Hosted Exchange to Hosted Exchange Migration Guide

This article will guide you through the steps for migrating mailboxes from one Hosted Exchange Provider to another Hosted Exchange Provider. The versions of Hosted Exchange covered are Exchange Server 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016 as source, and 2013, 2016, and 2019 as destinations. 

There are some tools and resources that will make the migration easier.

Exchange questions and troubleshooting

Our Exchange Mailbox FAQExchange Migration Setup and Planning, and Exchange Mailbox Migration Troubleshooting guides contain a number of common questions and concerns, along with more information, guidance, and steps to resolve issues such as throttling.

First migration?

We’ve created a guide on scoping, planning, and managing the migration process for your use. If this is your first migration, we recommend reading this guide carefully.

DeploymentPro & DMA

DeploymentPro currently can only officially be used with migration projects where Office 365 is the Destination. If using DeploymentPro with Exchange (either On-Premises or Hosted) as a Destination, then a Proof of Concept should be run first. We do recommend using DeploymentPro in this scenario.

Exchange environments can have complex AutoDiscover settings, along with UPN and SMTP address mis-matches, which can require troubleshooting and reconfiguration before DeploymentPro can be made to work against such environments.

DeploymentPro is included with the User Migration Bundle license. DeploymentPro cannot be purchased as a standalone service license, and it cannot be added to the single-use mailbox migration license. If you wish to remotely configure Outlook mail profiles using DeploymentPro after a migration, purchase the User Migration Bundle license.

The DeploymentPro Guide and DeploymentPro FAQ will guide you through the proof of concept, as well as any other DeploymentPro questions, while the DMA Installation and Introduction to DMA articles provide resources and guidance on DMA.

MigrationWiz

MigrationWiz is a migration tool, not a syncing tool. If changes are made at the source after migration, they will not sync to the destination, nor will changes made at the destination sync to the source. We do not have “live” monitoring of changes (as with a sync agent) and we cannot handle scenarios such as conflict resolution without user interaction.

MigrationWiz supports the capability to share migration projects across a Workgroup. When the Project Sharing feature is turned on, all Agents besides those who are Inactive can view all migrations projects. 

We are not able to support migrations with two-factor or multifactor authentication. 

Prepare the Source Environment

Create access account

Ask the Hosted Exchange Provider to create an account for migration purposes (e.g., named MigrationWiz) and grant full access rights to each mailbox, by running this PowerShell script against the newly created account:
Get-Mailbox -ResultSize Unlimited | Add-MailboxPermission -AccessRights FullAccess -User MigrationWiz

Some Hosted Exchange providers allow this access to be granted via their web portal. In this case, you could log in to each mailbox via their portal and then grant the migration account (e.g., MigrationWiz) to have read/write access to each mailbox. This is laborious and time-consuming, and so it is preferred that the Hosted Exchange provider run the PowerShell script above, particularly if you have a large number of users.

Some Hosted Exchange Providers will not grant this access. If that is the case, then you can request credentials from your end users during the migration. 

Request user credentials

Create a project without admin credentials, and request credentials from users.

  1. Create a MigrationWiz mailbox migration project. When entering the Source information, do not click on the checkbox to enter admin credentials.
  2. Click on the green bar Bulk Add.
  3. Click on the checkbox I don't know the login name and password for the Source mailboxes.
  4. Click on the Upload bar.
  5. Click on the Choose File button, and select and upload your CSV file that contains the list of mailbox names.
  6. Click on the Save button.

When you submit the mailbox for migration, we will send an email with a secure link in which allows the end user to provide their credentials directly to the system. The sequence of steps are as follows:

  1. You submit the item for migration.
  2. An email is sent to the email address configured with a secure link to provide the credentials.
  3. The end user clicks on the provided link, which opens a secure web page.
  4. The end user provides their credentials directly to our system.
  5. The credentials are verified.
  6. The item is immediately submitted for migration.

The status of the migration will remain as "Waiting For End User" until the end user provides their credentials to the system.

Optional - Large Projects

If this is a very large project, the best results will be achieved by setting the project to use impersonation at the Source. In order to enable this, the PowerShell script below needs to be run by your Hosted Exchange provider, if they are willing.
New-ManagementRoleAssignment -Role ApplicationImpersonation -User <admin_user_name>

The second part of this process is to set your MigrationWiz project Advanced Options to use impersonation at the Source. This step is included in the MigrationWiz section in this guide.

Prepare Mailboxes

  1. Test mailbox access
  2. Export mailboxes to CSV file(s).
    • Ask the Hosted Exchange provider to provide them. 
    • If the provider has an admin console which includes this capability, run their tool to export the user list (and, if necessary, the passwords) to the CSV file.
    • If you have admin credentials on the Hosted Exchange environment, you only need a list of the email addresses. You do not need the password for each mailbox being migrated (because MigrationWiz will use delegation and perform the migration based on the admin credentials).
    • If you do not have admin credentials on the Hosted Exchange environment (which is common), you must obtain all the email addresses and passwords for the users.
    • If the list of mailboxes and passwords from the Hosted Exchange provider is not available, request that the users send these to MigrationWiz as part of the migration process.

Prepare the Destination Environment

Follow the steps in Prepare the Source to: 

  1. Set up user accounts.
  2. Ask the Hosted Exchange provider to create an account for migration that has full access permissions to all mailboxes.

If you do not provide an admin account when setting up your Destination endpoint, it will be necessary to provide SMTP email addresses, login names, and passwords when adding Destination users to your MigrationWiz project. If you do provide an admin account, you only need to provide the SMTP email addresses.

Below is an example PowerShell script which grants full access rights to an account called MigrationWiz. Your Hosted Exchange provider needs to change the user to match your admin account before running the script.
Get-Mailbox -ResultSize Unlimited | Add-MailboxPermission -AccessRights FullAccess -User MigrationWiz

 

MSPComplete Steps

Create Customer

  1. Click the Add button in the top navigation bar
  2. Click the Add Customer button on the All Customers page
  3. In the left navigation pane, select the appropriate workgroup and then click All Customers.
  4. Click Add Customer.
  5. Enter the new customer’s information in the Add Customer form. Primary Email Domain and Company Name are required. The rest are optional.
  6. Click Save.
  7. Repeat steps 1 through 4 for each customer you want to add. 

Purchase licenses

We recommend that you purchase the User Migration Bundle license for this migration scenario. User Migration Bundle licenses allow multiple types of migrations to be performed with a single license. They also allow DeploymentPro to be used to configure Outlook email profiles. For questions on licensing, visit MigrationWiz Licenses

To purchase licenses:

  1. Sign in to your BitTitan account. 
  2. In the top navigation bar, click Purchase.
  3. Click the Select button and choose User Migration Bundle licenses.
  4. Enter the number of licenses you want to purchase. Click Buy Now.
  5. Enter a Billing address if applicable.
  6. Click Next.
  7. Review the Order Summary and enter a payment method.
  8. Click Place Your Order.

Apply licenses

  1. Select the correct workgroup on the top of the left navigation pane. This is the workgroup that the customer and migration project were created under. Your account must be part of the workgroup if the project was not created under your account.
  2. On the left navigation pane, click Customers.
  3. Click the customer that employs the user to whom you want to apply a User Migration Bundle license.
  4. Click the Users tab at the top of the page.
  5. Check the box to the left of the email for the user(s) to whom you want to apply a license.
  6. Click the Apply User Migration Bundle License button at the top of the page. It is recommended that users be added to the Customer page with the vanity domain. Then have the User Migration Bundle Licenses applied, before editing to show the .onmicrosoft domain, if the .onmicrosoft domain will be used for the migration.
  7. If there is at least one unassigned User Migration Bundle license available for each selected user, click Confirm. Important: If there are no User Migration Bundle licenses currently available to be assigned and your role in the workgroup is Manager or higher, the form that appears provides all the necessary information and will walk you through the steps of purchasing User Migration Bundle licenses.

GPO is the recommended methodology because no end user interaction is required. However, DMA may also be deployed via email, which requires users to manually install it on their computers.

Via GPO
  1. Download the DMA setup file from MSPComplete.
    1. In MSPComplete, click on All Customers from the navigation sidebar. 
    2. Click on the customer name for which you wish to deploy DMA.
    3. On the horizontal menu bar, click Users.
    4. Click Add Users, and then click Add Users via Device Management Agent
    5. On the Add Users via Device Management panel, click Device Management setup file to download the DMA setup file to your local drive. Please note that this file should not be renamed or altered in any way or it could cause issues when DMA is installed. These instructions are more detailed than those listed in the Add Users via Device Management Agent panel. 
  2. Step 2: Create a network share that is accessible to all of your customer’s computers and put the DMA setup file in the share folder.
    1. Log on to the file server as an administrator.
    2. Click Start and search for Server Manager.
    3. Click Server Manager from the search results.
    4. Click File and Storage Services
    5. Click Shares
    6. Next to Shares, click Tasks
    7. Click New Share
    8. Continue through the New Share Wizard prompts until finished, then click Create
    9. Right-click on the new share in Server Manager, and click Open Share
    10. Put the DMA setup file in the share.
    11. Write down the share's network path. This will be needed when creating the scheduled task.
  3. Step 3: Create a Group Policy Object that forces the domain joined computers in a security filter to execute the DMA setup file through a scheduled task.
    1. Log on to the Active Directory Domain Controller as an administrator.
    2. Click Start and search for Group Policy Management.
    3. Click Group Policy Management
    4. Right-click on the desired Active Directory domain, and then click Create a GPO in this domain, and link it here.
    5. Enter a name for the GPO, and then click Ok. By default, the GPO will apply to all users and computers that successfully authenticate to the Active Directory domain.
  4. To narrow the scope of computers that install DMA, select Authenticated Users, and click Remove
    1. To confirm the removal, click Ok.
  5. To add a new security filter, click Add.
    1. Type the name of the security group that the target computers are a member of and click Check names
    2. Click Ok.
  6. Right-click on the new GPO, and then click Edit
    1. In the console tree, under Computer Configuration, click PreferencesControl Panel > Scheduled Tasks.
    2. Right-click Scheduled Tasks and click on New, and then click on Immediate Task (At least Windows 7).
    3. Enter a name and a description for the Scheduled Task.
    4. Click Change User or Group
    5. Type "system" in the Object name text box.
    6. Click Check Names. Make sure that the system object name resolves to NT Authority\System.
    7. Under Security options, click Run whether a user is logged on or not and add a check next to Run with highest privileges.
    8. In the Configure for drop-down menu, select Windows 7, Windows Server 2008 R2
    9. Click the Actions tab
    10. Click on New.
    11. In the Action drop-down menu, select Start a program
    12. In the Programs/script text box, enter the network path for the DMA setup file. If you use the Browse button to find the location of the script, then it will add the path as c:\xxxx. This is incorrect since the script needs to include the UNC path and not the local path. Be sure to replace the c:\ format with the \\servername\sharename\ format.​
    13. If the customer's computers use a proxy, you must add a command line parameter into the Add arguments field to ensure that DMA is able to transmit data through the proxy. Read the How do I deploy the Device Management Agent on computers that use a proxy?​​ article for more information.​
    14. Click Ok.
    15. Click the Conditions
    16. Add a checkmark next to Start only if the following network connection is available, and then select Any connection.
    17. Click Ok
  7. Close Group Policy Management Editor, and then close Group Policy Management.
  8. The DMA setup file will execute on user computers at the next Group Policy refresh, typically every 90 minutes, with a random offset of 0 to 30 minutes.
Via Email

To deploy the BitTitan Device Management Agent (DMA) through email, you ask users to manually install the agent. We recommend installing DMA through a group policy object because it’s automated and non-intrusive.

  1. Click Customers on the navigation sidebar.
  2. Click the customer name for which you wish to deploy DMA.
  3. Click Users.
  4. Add a checkmark next to the user(s) that should receive the email.
  5. Click the Enable Device Management Through Email button.
  6. In the Enable Device Management via Email panel, enter your email address in the Reply-To Address field.
  7. Confirm that all of the users you chose are listed in the To field.
  8. To personalize the email message that the customer's users will receive, type your changes into the message body text box. If the customer's computers use a proxy, you must add instructions to run the DMA installer with command line parameters that ensure DMA is able to transmit data through the proxy.
  9. Click Send Agent Email.
  10. Important: DO NOT change the name of the DMA setup file sent via email, or let users share the file. Each file is only for the user and machine it is sent to.
  11. The customer’s users will receive the email asking them to manually install the agent.​ The users and their computer information will start populating in MSPComplete under the customer’s context soon after the agent is installed and running.

Once DMA has been deployed to users, check the Users tab in MSPComplete. This will be populated with the user accounts that have DMA installed.

DeploymentPro Steps

  1. Launch DeploymentPro.
    1. Enter the Domain.
    2. Select the Destinations endpoint.
    3. Checkmark the Auto-populate box.
    4. In the Client Interface Configurations section, upload your company logo and add supporting text. We strongly recommend doing this, because this is the logo and text that end users will see in a desktop pop-up when they are prompted to reconfigure their Outlook profiles. If you do not upload your own logo, the default BitTitan logo will be included instead.
    5. Save and continue.
    1. Go to All Products > Device Management, click on DeploymentPro on the far left and follow the prompts to launch.
    2. Select a customer from the list by clicking on the customer name. The status column will show Enabled when a customer account has had DMA deployed to users.
    3. Configure the customer DeploymentPro module:
  2. Activate DeploymentPro module for users.
    1. Either select all users or select individual users.
    2. DeploymentPro is included with the User Migration Bundle license. DeploymentPro cannot be purchased as a standalone service license, and it cannot be added to the single-use mailbox migration license. If you wish to remotely configure Outlook mail profiles using DeploymentPro after a migration, purchase the User Migration Bundle license.
    3. Click the Schedule Cutover button.
  3. Schedule the profile cutover date.
    • Set the date and time for the Outlook profile configuration to occur, and click the Schedule Cutover button.
      • The DeploymentPro module will install on user devices immediately and then run silently until this date.
      • The profile cutover date should be set to a date and time that is shortly after MX record cutover.
  4. On the profile cutover date, users will be guided through the reconfiguration of their Outlook profile.

MigrationWiz Steps

Create a Mailbox Migration project

  1. Click the Go to My Projects button.
  2. Click the Create Project button.
  3. Click on the type of project that you wish to create. For this migration:
    • Mailbox: Mailbox projects are used to migrate the contents of the primary user mailbox from the previous environment to the new environment. Most mailbox migrations can migrate email, calendars, and contacts.

For mailbox migrations, use administrative credentials to access mailboxes​. In most migration scenarios, the admin account needs to have full access rights to the Source mailboxes. 

  1. Click Next Step.
  2. Enter a Project name and select a Customer.
  3. Click Next Step.

Endpoints

Endpoints are now created through MigrationWiz, rather than through MSPComplete. The steps for this section outline how to create the endpoints in MigrationWiz.

If you are selecting an existing endpoint, keep in mind that only ten endpoints will show in the drop-down. If you have more than ten, you may need to search. Endpoint search is case and character specific. For example, Cust0mer will not show up if the search is customer. We recommend keeping a list of endpoints you have created, along with any unique spellings or capitalization you may have used.

You may either use existing endpoints, or create new ones. 

To create a new source endpoint:

  1. Click Endpoints
  2. Click Add Endpoint
  3. Click + Find My Service Provider button
  4. Click the down arrow in the Service Provider field, and select the Hosted Exchange Provider (taking care to select the correct version of Exchange that the customer is running). This will auto-populate the Outlook Web Access URL with their verified URL.
  5. Or, instead of clicking on the + Find My Service Provider button, click the Exchange Server 2003+ button and manually enter the Outlook Web Access URL.
  6. It is necessary to add all domains that will be part of the migration on either the Source or the Destination. This means that, if there are users in one project with domain names Sourcedomain.com and Destinationdomain.com, it is important to ensure that both of these are added under “Your Domains” when creating the endpoints. When adding a domain, you need to click the "+" button.
  7. Click the Provide Credentials radio button and enter the admin account credentials. These are the credentials that you obtained from your Hosted Exchange Provider when following the steps under the "Prepare the Source Environment" section of this guide.

To create a new destination endpoint:

  1. Click Endpoints
  2. Click Add Endpoint
  3. Click + Find My Service Provider button
  4. Click the down arrow in the Service Provider field, and select the Hosted Exchange Provider (taking care to select the correct version of Exchange that the customer is running). This will auto-populate the Outlook Web Access URL with their verified URL.
  5. Or, instead of clicking on the + Find My Service Provider button, click the Exchange Server 2003+ button and manually enter the Outlook Web Access URL.
  6. It is necessary to add all domains that will be part of the migration on either the Source or the Destination. This means that, if there are users in one project with domain names Sourcedomain.com and Destinationdomain.com, it is important to ensure that both of these are added under “Your Domains” when creating the endpoints. When adding a domain, you need to click the "+" button.
  7. Click the Provide Credentials radio button and enter the admin account credentials. These are the credentials that you obtained from your Hosted Exchange Provider when following the steps under the "Prepare the Source Environment" section of this guide.

Add Users

Add the user accounts that will be migrated to the project. MigrationWiz allows you to bulk import mailboxes into the system.

Use the Bulk Add option, and import from the CSV file that you prepared under the Prepare the Source section of this guide. If the list of mailboxes and passwords from the Hosted Exchange provider is not available, request that the users send these to MigrationWiz as part of the migration process. 

  • If the list of mailboxes and passwords from the Hosted Exchange provider is not available, request that the users send these to MigrationWiz as part of the migration process.

To import one or more mailboxes:

  1. Sign in to your MigrationWiz account.
  2. Select the Project for which you want to perform the bulk import.
  3. Click Add.
  4. Click Bulk Add.
  5. Follow the instructions on the page.

Add Advanced Options

Under Support/Support options:

  • If using impersonation, the value for Maximum concurrent migrations​, under the Performance section, can be set to a very high value, e.g.,1000. There is no limit for this value if using impersonation.
  • If not using impersonation, we recommend that you set the Maximum concurrent migrations​ value to a low number, such as 20.
  • If this is a very large project, the best results will be achieved by setting the project to use impersonation at the Source (as documented in the Prepare Source Environment section of this guide). However, many Hosted providers will not accommodate this request. If they do, checkmark the box for Use impersonation at source. Exchange impersonation (not delegation) utilizes per-user throttling quotas, which allows for a very large number of users to be migrated concurrently.

Run Verify Credentials

  1. Open the Project containing items you wish to validate​.
  2. Select the items you wish to validate.
  3. Click on the Start button in your dashboard.
  4. Select Verify Credentials from the drop-down list.

Once complete, the results of the verification will be shown in the Status section.​ 

Notify Users

Notify users that a migration is occurring. Send email to all users telling them the time and date of the migration.

Run Migration

Pre-Stage pass

  1. Select the users you wish to migrate
  2. Click the Start button from the top
  3. Select Pre-Stage Migration
  4. Under the Migration Scheduling section, from the drop-down list, select 90 days ago
  5. Click Start Migration.

MX Record Cutover

Change over MX records on the DNS provider's portal.

Also, include the AutoDiscover (CName) setting.

If you are migrating in batches and mail coexistence is required, you will not be cutting over the MX records until your final batch of users has been migrated, and you must set up mail forwarding.

Mail Forwarding

If you are not cutting over an entire domain/organization at once by changing the MX records, you can perform a phased migration and set up coexistence by setting up forwards on the mailboxes you wish to migrate.

This can be done either through the use of PowerShell scripts, or through your Exchange Management Console. We do not recommend setting up Exchange email contacts and a DNS Internal Relay for this, since this will not allow for any Delta Migration passes to be made afterwards because the mailbox no longer exists.

By PowerShell:

Forward email to internal recipient and DON'T save local copy.

PowerShell command syntax:

Set-Mailbox -Identity <Identity> -ForwardingAddress <Office 365 User Email Address> -DeliverToMailboxAndForward $False

  • Example: Set-Mailbox -Identity John -ForwardingAddress Suzan@o365info.com -DeliverToMailboxAndForward $False
  • The email address specifed on the 'ForwardingAddress' parameter should exist as a Mail Contact.

Because you set DeliverToMailboxAndForward to false, a copy of the email will NOT be kept in the on-premises mailbox. When setting up forwards, make sure that you do NOT save a local copy before the forward. If you do save a local copy, then when you peform Delta passes, MigrationWiz will migrate the items that it previously hasn’t migrated (and watermarked). This will cause duplicates at your Destination.

Through Exchange Management Console:

The first step is to create the forwarding objects in your local Active Directory. These forwarding objects will be hidden from the address book, and will be used purely to forward mail for mailboxes that are migrated. Note that these objects are created but not used until you set the forwarding, so these steps can be done ahead of time.

  1. Download our script to create forwarding objects to a computer that is joined to the domain.
  2. Modify the script in a text editor (like Notepad) and change the forwarding domain in the top of the script to the temporary domain in the new environment, for example, company.onmicrosoft.com.
  3. Run the script. You will know the script is complete when you see a confirmation.

The next step is to set up forwarding for mailboxes prior to migration. Before submitting a mailbox for migration, set the forward by performing the following:

  1. Launch the Exchange Management Console from the Start Menu.
  2. Expand the Recipient Configuration note from the navigation tree.
  3. Click the Mailbox node from the navigation tree.
  4. Right-click on the mailbox to set the forward for and click Properties.
  5. Click the Mailbox Flow Settings tab.
  6. Select Delivery Options and click Properties. Do not select the option "Deliver message to both forwarding address and mailbox". This is important to ensure that Delta passes do not cause duplicates. If you do save a local copy, then when you perform Delta passes, MigrationWiz will migrate the items that it previously hasn't migrated (and watermarked). This will cause duplicates on your Destination.
  7. Click the checkbox Forward to, then click Browse.
  8. Select the name of the user that contains the prefix (External Forward) in the display name. This is the forwarding object created previously.
  9. Click OK.
  10. Click OK​.

Notify users

Send email to end users to let them know what to expect for their Outlook profile reconfiguration. Samples and screenshots can be found in our DeploymentPro documentation.

Enable AutoDiscover again, so that users can create new profiles via AutoDiscover, or use DeploymentPro to automate the configuration of new Outlook profiles. 

Full (Delta) pass

  1. Select the users
  2. Click the Start button from the top
  3. Select Full Migration
  4. Click Start Migration

Run Retry Errors

Look through the user list and click any red "failed migration" errors. Review the information and act accordingly.

If problems persist, contact Support.

Outlook Configuration

If not using DeploymentPro, users must create new Outlook profiles, and set up their signatures again, and reattach any PST files that were attached to their previous profile.

Request Statistics

Click the pie chart icon in the MigrationWiz dashboard to receive an email containing all the project migration statistics.

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