Best Practices for Migrating to Exchange 2016 and Office 365

To help you deliver a seamless, efficient transition to Exchange 2016 and Office 365, this white paper details the key steps you need to follow, along with associated best practices. With the right strategy, planning and tools, you can proceed with confidence and position your organization for success on your new Microsoft platform. Inside you will find details on each of the eight critical steps for a successful migration:

  1. Perform a pre-migration assessment.
  2. Optimize your Active Directory.
  3. Plan for coexistence.
  4. Evaluate migration solutions carefully.
  5. Implement and test your recovery solution.
  6. Run a pilot migration.
  7. Schedule migrations to minimize organizational impact.
  8. Initiate the migrations, track their progress and continue to communicate.

While this paper focuses on migrations to Exchange 2016 and Office 365, this methodology can also be applied in migrations to earlier versions of Exchange.

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Step 4: Evaluate Migration Solutions Carefully

Considerations to keep in mind Migration planning, of course, also includes choosing migration solutions. As you evaluate your options, be sure to consider:

  • Your source platform — You need a solution that can handle all the specific complexities of your source data, whether you’re on Exchange, GroupWise, Notes or another platform. Many of these platforms provide options for archiving and local content, include different calendaring features, and implement different sharing and delegation models.The solution you select must be capable of automatically translating these differences to match the format expected in the target platform.
  • Migration scope and options — Consider whether the solution offers a fixed migration process or can be tailored to your organization’s specific needs. For example, a fixed migration process might not include migration of legacy archives, PST files and public folders or the consolidation of multiple Exchange forests as part of the migration to Office 365. Be sure the solution you choose offers all the specific functionality and coverage your organization requires. 
  • Migration fidelity — Look for a migration solution that provides a complete migration that preserves all of your email and calendar data, including local content, delegations and access control lists (ACLs). For migrations to systems with different message and attachment limitations (like Office 365), the solution must provide automated methods of preserving attachment data and migrating content to other storage mechanisms such as personal archives and OneDrive for Business.
  • Migration architecture, throughput and efficiency — One of the single biggest factors affecting migration efficiency is the architecture of the migration solution.
    It is critical to choose a solution with a multi-threaded architecture, which
    allows a single migration server to migrate multiple users simultaneously. A multi-threaded architecture reduces the hardware requirements for the migration and increases migration speed, dramatically reducing the overall cost of the migration

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