Google Apps Migration Tool for Microsoft Outlook – Migrate to Outlook 2013 in 2 Easy Steps
I have just been involved in a migration from Exchange 2003 to Google Apps for a company of about 20 users. They all connected to the old Exchange server on versions of Outlook 2003-2013. The main reason they switched was because Outlook 2013 was not compatible with Exchange 2003 (This Server is no longer supported anyway). Since the installation was only 20 users and it didn’t warrant the cost of a new Exchange Server and upgrading a lot of users to Office 2013. We decided to go the Google Apps route and worry about the Office upgrades later (considering the circumstances, this was the best option).
Once we got the mail domain switched over to Google, the mailboxes had to be configured and the mail had to be migrated over. I decided to do a mailbox at a time instead of the whole server – my reasoning – I am a bit of a skeptic and I would prefer Google apps to tell me one mailbox migration failed than a whole server migration. I had 75 GB of mail to migrate over and I would hate for it to fail after 20 hours. Even if you are doing this over a weekend, you do not want to run out of time!
The biggest problem I had was my Click-To-Run Installations of Office 2013. It seems the Google Apps Migration Tool for Microsoft Outlook does not work for this version of Office 2013 (Those who get Office 2013 through office365.com be warned!). If you buy and actual DVD or download and install from an .ISO, apparently you won’t have this problem. There are several workarounds but it all involved hacking the Windows registry and reinstalling Office with a downloaded version. You can convert your Click-to-Run Installation if you want. I had 6 installations at four different sites. I opted not to do this
Step #1 – Connect to the old Exchange server and export the user’s Mail File as a PST and a version of Outlook older than 2013
Even if the new email server is already accepting mail, as long as you still have the old Exchange server online and the ports still forwarded to it you can fake the computer out by putting the host name and the old IP address in the host file of the computer you wish to get the PST file. I also had an older version of Outlook (2010) connecting to the mailbox. Make sure you take this entry out of the host file when you are done!
I just chose the File Tab / Chose “Open” and the Import / Export File Button. I chose to export to a file or program, chose to export to a .pst file and made sure the top level of the email was chosen and “include sub folders” were checked (so I would get the whole mail file). Depending on how large the mail store is, it could take a while to export. I guess I was lucky. They were migrating away from an SBS version of Exchange. It caps mailbox size at 2GB. I also had everyone clean their mail out prior to the migration to help me out. Well almost everyone did :p.
Step #2 – Use the Google Apps Migration Tool for Microsoft Outlook
Once you get the .pst file, uninstall the older version of Outlook (It confusing Google Apps Sync). When you finally decide to install Google Apps Sync for this user, you will thank me! Note: If you still get errors getting Google Apps Sync to install and you know for sure you have only one version of Outlook installed on the machine, Go to Control Panel / Mail and delete all Exchange profiles from the machine. You will have to create one dummy profile in Outlook 2013. Google Apps Sync will work then.
Once you get the .pst file, take it to another computer and use the Google Apps Migration Tool for Outlook:
2. It will ask you to sign in with your Google account, your email address is your user name. Click “Continue”.
3. It will pop up a browser window asking to have access to your Google profile to do the migration, Click “Accept”.
If you haven’t logged in to this Google account on this machine before, it will asked you to do so now. If have already logged in before or you just have, you will see the screen in the next step…
4. Minimize the browser window and you will see the screen below:
5. Like the screenshot, please choose “From PST files(s) from the drop down box.
6. From here navigate to your where you stored the .pst file and choose the “Mail File” file.
7. It my case I chose “Migrate only new data”. You can choose “All” data if you want.
8. Click Next.
9. In my case, I only chose “Email Messages” but as you can see, there are many options you can choose then click Migrate.
10. You will see a screen similar to the one above. You can “pause” the migration at any time by clicking “Pause Migration”. To Resume the Migration, just click on “Resume Migration.”
11. If the Migration is successful it will tell you so. If it fails it will also tell you but also give you a choice to restart the migration or cancel. Click restart migration and it will begin where it left off.
Note: Even if only one message did not get migrated, The Google Apps Migration Tool For Microsoft Outlook will consider the migration a failure. To me it was a success! I just tell the user to mount the PST folder and Look through that file if the mail is really that important. OK if there were several thousand messages that failed to migrate, I would look into it but not 3 or 4! To, me, a failed migration is usually due to a network error and significant amount of mail did not get migrated.
When you install the Google App Sync Tool for the Outlook 2013 user, it pull down all their mail without any issue.