When migrating your company email to Exchange Online, there is no shame in asking for help. Large enterprises cannot do this alone and often reach out to certified Microsoft partners such as Agile IT for assistance. While a migration may sound simple, it can grow to be a complex issue quickly when multiple mailboxes and large mail files are involved.
Moving to Exchange Online involves a methodology that some organizations are not equipped to manage on their own. Agile IT has helped several organizations move hundreds of thousands of users to Office 365 and Exchange Online and can even help fix what another “migration specialist” may have broken.
Here are some ways Agile IT can assist in your migration to Exchange Online.
Factors to Consider Prior to Migration
Like other types of migrations, moving to Exchange Online involves extensive planning, requirements for storage and network setup, configurations, and other variables that need to be performed. You could schedule a test set of mailboxes and users to find out how smooth the migration can be or if there are any hiccups along the way that need to be remedied before moving forward with a full migration.
Migration Challenges You Can Expect
Every organization’s journey to Exchange Online is different. For instance, your Exchange environment could have issues with corrupt data that need to be corrected prior to migration. Another factor is that your organization can’t afford downtime while migrating. Best practices are applied for this issue.
Slow network connections can hinder the upload of mailboxes to Exchange Online. This can be remedied by phasing data migration so a preliminary sweep will copy emails up to the Cloud over a scheduled period of time (typically either days or weeks depending on the amount of data). A final sweep will ensure recent emails are sent over to each mailbox.
Our cloud migration specialists have also encountered issues with hardened security. An Exchange environment can be locked down harder than Fort Knox, so default tools from Microsoft won’t allow the migration. Security features may require modification to allow the migration to occur. This step requires proper planning and coordination with an organization’s IT administrators to ensure the security is scaled back enough to allow the migration.
Firewalls can be also troublesome if not configured correctly. A misconfigured firewall can corrupt Exchange Web Services and SMTP traffic. This can cause disruptions in the planning of a migration, which is why a scheduled migration should include some additional time to work through potential roadblocks.
Common Issues When Fixing a Mishandled Migration
Agile IT has been pulled in from some organizations to correct misguided migrations or to complete an unfinished one. If the migration is moving much slower than expected, firewall and proxy configurations may need to be reviewed as well as security and migration servers. These are some of the most common issues organizations experience with a migration.
Another issue organizations may need assistance with is if the migration worked well in a test environment but not on a live network. Several best practices can be discovered from this situation. Lab connections and traffic are often different in a lab than a live network. Mailboxes setup in the test lab may be free from corruption opposed to corrupt mailboxes on a live network, which can cause issues. The security on lab servers is typically lighter than on network servers.
Email archives can also cause problems with your Exchange Online migration. If an organization has used a third-party archiving vendor, they may have no way to extract emails from the archives. This can lead to several years of email archives that need to be cut over to Exchange Online. Agile IT’s cloud consultants can help eliminate an old archiving situation and move nearly all email to Exchange Online since archive storage is practically unlimited.
A previous migration attempt may involve migrating the mailboxes but not the archives to Exchange Online. The cost of a third-party archived vendor solution adds to the complexity of a migration. The cost to keep an archive solution can be eliminated so everything is migrated to Exchange Online.
Get Trusted Assistance Migrating to Exchange Online
When migrating to Exchange Online, it is essential to understand that the process involves multiple steps, which could drag the migration on longer than you initially thought. This is where Agile IT can help.
Agile IT’s cloud-first consultants can provide a proper assessment and schedule to ensure a smooth migration. Through our experience with security, storage, firewalls, proxies, networking, Active Directory, and more, we are able to minimize risk and frustration in an Exchange Online migration. Whether the migration is being planned or a fouled migration needs correction, Agile IT is a certified Microsoft partner that can ease the stress and pressure organizations experience.