How to make the move from Google Apps to Office 365

There's a new cloud on the block, so how do you migrate to it from the old cloud?

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Click New to begin the wizard and choose IMAP. Provide your IMAP server information (such as imap.gmail.com) and provide the basic connection information. Then provide a CSV file with the list of mailboxes to migrate (you can choose to exclude folders you don't need).

If you hadn't already pointed your DNS MX records to Office 365, do so now. The steps depend on the provider of your email DNS. Microsoft offers the mydomain.onmicrosoft.com domain to start with; if you have your own domain, add that to the Office 365 portal's settings and configure DNS management to set nameservers to Microsoft.

To migrate filters (aka rules), contacts, and calendars, you have to jump through a few additional hoops. For contacts, merge duplicates in Google Apps, export them from Gmail as an Outlook CSV file, and import them into Office 365's Outlook (or OWA). You need to do this individually for each account. Likewise, export calendars from Google Apps as ICS files and import them into Outlook as well.

The third-party migration option
The manual method quckly becomes overwhelming if you have many users. For enterprise-level migrations, consider using a third-party tool, such as Binary Tree's E2E Complete, Dell's Quest OnDemand Migration for Email, or BitTitan's MigrationWiz. They typically migrate not just emails but also contacts and calendars without a great deal of manual effort.

Over the last few years, I've seen many organizations move from on-premises Exchange to Google Apps. But now that Office 365 is available, it may be time to move to Microsoft's cloud, whether you're still on-premise or using Google Apps. The good news: The migration effort won't kill you.

This story, "How to make the move from Google Apps to Office 365," was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Read more of J. Peter Bruzzese's Enterprise Windows blog and follow the latest developments in Windows at InfoWorld.com. For the latest business technology news, follow InfoWorld.com on Twitter.

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