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Migration Manager for Exchange 8.15 - Product Overview

Migration Scenarios

Migration Manager supports a wide range of Exchange migration scenarios. The main question when planning the migration is whether you are:

  • Migrating Exchange only
    Users keep logging into the same forest that they were using prior to migration but now have their mailboxes in the new org.
  • Migrating accounts and mailboxes
    Users not only get a new messaging environment but also start logging into a new Active Directory forest.

In both scenarios the target organization (and the corresponding Active Directory forest) can be either a new, empty environment or an existing environment already being used (which is useful, for example, when two environments are merged as a result of a corporate merger).

Each of these scenarios is explained further below. For technical insights into the migration scenarios and the migration process, please refer to the Migration Manager Tips and Tricks document.

Migrate Exchange Only

In multi-forest Active Directory deployments, users from several forests might have mailboxes in one Exchange organization. This deployment type is sometimes referred to as Exchange Resource Forest or Multiple Forests/Single Org.

The main characteristic of such deployments is that users get authenticated in one forest and have their mailboxes in different forest. In other words, the security directory is separate from the Exchange directory.

Migration Manager supports migration and deployment of such configurations. The product will migrate the Exchange org so that users get switched to the new messaging system while remaining in their existing forest from a security perspective.

Migrate Accounts and Mailboxes

Starting with Exchange 2000, Microsoft has effectively merged Exchange directory and Active Directory. In most Active Directory and Exchange deployments, users get authenticated in the same directory that hosts their Exchange system. Thus, moving the users to another forest means moving both their security accounts and their mailboxes.

Migration Manager for Active Directory is a companion application to Migration Manager for Exchange. It handles the security part of migration while Migration Manager for Exchange handles all the Exchange data. When both products are installed, their administrative consoles are integrated into a single user interface, making the whole migration project easy to manage.

Specifically, Migration Manager for Active Directory allows you to migrate Active Directory security (such as synchronizing passwords and moving the security ID), move computers to the new environment, and re-permission (re-ACL) resources throughout the network.

Normally, this type of migration begins by establishing synchronization between the orgs, including directory synchronization. This makes the environments identical from the end-user perspective.

Then, as mailboxes get synchronized, you start the Active Directory migration: you divide users into groups and use Migration Manager for Active Directory to bring their security and Active Directory settings to the target environment, one group at a time.

Migration Process Overview

Exchange migration can be organized into the following steps that allow you to gradually include new pieces of Exchange infrastructure so that finally everything gets transferred to the target.

  1. Directory synchronization
    Directory synchronization is key to the Exchange migration process. All components rely on directory synchronization because all of them need information about the account correspondence between the source and target directories. For example, public folders need permissions translated correctly as their data gets transferred, and mailbox and calendar synchronization need to be able to locate the mailboxes to be synchronized.
    The goals of directory synchronization are to:
    • Synchronize the global address lists (GALs) for both organizations for a common end-user experience
    • Create user, contact, and group objects that are being migrated, or match existing objects
    • Keep the objects synchronized so administrators can make changes in just one of the directories
    • Set mail redirection so that mail is forwarded to the active mailbox no matter which organization it was sent from
  2. Public folder synchronization (optional)
    Public folder synchronization effectively sets public folder replication between the two organizations. Changes made in one organization get replicated to the other. Thus, users can share the same public folder space.
    However, the structures of the source and target public folders do not have to be identical. Migration Manager provides for on-the-fly restructuring of public folders.
    Permissions on public folders are also preserved and synchronized in both directions.
    Note that this step is optional.
    To learn how to migrate public folder data to Microsoft SharePoint, see the Quest Migration Suite for SharePoint documentation available on the Quest website (
  3. Calendar and free/busy synchronization
    Calendaring is a vital part of collaboration. Migration Manager allows you to synchronize calendar information independently from mailbox migration. That way you can ensure that both organizations have identical address books and calendar information is also available for any user in any organization. You can also synchronize free/busy information separately, making that as close to real-time as possible. For example, a user can always schedule a meeting with the users from another organization, or see whether another user is free or busy.
  4. Mailbox synchronization
    The main aim of Exchange migration is to move every user’s mailbox content unchanged to the new mailbox. When the user’s mailbox is switched to the target server, it should be an exact replica of the user’s source mailbox. This is achieved by mailbox synchronization.
    During mailbox synchronization, Migration Manager gradually transfers the mail data from the source to the target servers. All mailbox content (including messages with attachments, contacts, calendar information, and journal entries), is copied to the target mailboxes. OST data is also preserved during the synchronization.
    There is no interruption in user messaging and collaboration because users do not necessarily have to be disconnected from their mailboxes during the migration.
  5. Mailbox switch
    Migration Manager can automatically switch mailboxes as they become synchronized. Alternatively, the administrator can monitor the synchronization status and schedule the switch for a particular date and time.
    When a mailbox is switched, Migration Manager sets redirection to the opposite direction: all new mail sent to the old mailbox is automatically forwarded to the new mailbox in the target org.
    Migration Manager also marks the mailbox in a way that initiates Outlook profile update at the user’s next logon.
  6. Outlook profile update
    Migration Manager is shipped with the Client Profile Updating Utility (CPUU, formerly EMWProf), which handles Outlook profile update. Normally, administrators include the utility in user logon scripts for the migration period. CPUU scans Outlook profiles at each user logon to check whether any of the profiles point to switched mailboxes. If a switched mailbox is found, CPUU updates the profile so that it points to the new mailbox on the target server. If no profiles require update, CPUU just quits.
  7. Source organization decommissioning
    As users are moved from the source to the target organization source servers can gradually be decommissioned and freed up for another use.

For technical insights into the migration scenarios and the migration process, please refer to the Migration Manager Tips and Tricks document.

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