Migrate Exchange 2010 to Office 365 Using Cutover, IMAP & Automated Migration Approach
This writeup describes the multiple ways, using which you can easily migrate Exchange 2010 to Office 365. The motive behind this was to create a comprehensive guide that can assist in the technical migration process. Go through the step-by-step different approaches mentioned below.
Microsoft ended its support for Exchange 2010 in October 2020. If you are still in the same on-premise environment, it’s high time that you plan to migrate Exchange 2010 to Office 365.
Talking about methods to perform the migration, then there are numerous ways available. Some of them are provided by Microsoft(manual approaches) that use PowerShell commands.
However, if you wish to carry out the overwhelming process without worrying about executing any complicated commands, then you can always opt for professional software i.e. SysTools Exchange to Office 365 Migration Tool.
5 Quick Steps to Migrate Exchange 2010 to Office 365
- Step 1. Download, & Run Tool on PC.
- Step 2. Select Workload & Apply Date Filter.
- Step 3. Use Exchange Server Details to Login.
- Step 4. Login with Office 365 Admin Credentials.
- Step 5. Vlidate Permissios & Click on Start.
Anyway, the question might have come to your mind: when it comes to migrating from a hosted environment, why does Office 365 come into the picture? Let’s find out!
Why Choose Office 365 When Migrating from Exchange 2010 Environment?
Technically speaking, Office 365 is proved to be a better option than the Exchange server in many aspects. It has several benefits both technical and financial.
- Office 365 is a cloud-based interface, so, you don’t have to worry about maintenance costs.
- unlike an On-premise Exchange server, Microsoft ensures 99.99% uptime for Office 365 suite. That clearly signifies that your data is available to you almost always.
- In addition to that, Office 365 automatically takes care of the security updates whereas for Exchange servers the admins have the responsibility to look for the updates and all. So, when you use Office 365, the IT admins of your organization can focus on other important tasks.
- Besides, Microsoft 365 comes with a flexible subscription plan for its users, so you have the freedom to choose a plan that suits your organization.
Above all, Office 365 plays an important role and helps in increasing the productivity of an organization to an extent.
However, you can experience all these perks if you successfully execute the migration process. And, to do so, you need to choose an appropriate method!
Now, let’s talk about various methods to migrate Exchange 2010 to Office 365.
What Options Do You Have To Perform Exchange 2010 to Microsoft Office 365 Migration?
Basically, for Microsoft Offered methods, you can take the help of the Exchange Admin Center(EAC) in Microsoft 365 to migrate Migrate Exchange 2010 to Office 365.
The options for migration vary depending on the source environment and the result that the user wants. The options(supported by Microsoft) for transferring data in Office 365 are;
Staged migration supports migration from on-premises Exchange 2003 or Exchange 2007 only. This kind of migration is targeted at users who are willing to establish a permanent mail coexistence with Exchange Online and their on-premises environments. It demands that users implement directory synchronization when they deploy Exchange Online. This option is applicable for users who have Enterprise Exchange licenses only. For the migration, IT admins have to provide a list of users to migrate in each batch by using a comma-separated values (CSV) file.
The cutover migration option is for users who want to migrate their whole environment in one go. However, it can migrate less than 2,000 mailboxes and is aimed at business users who are running Exchange 2003 or later versions. This option is available to Office 365 Enterprise users and Microsoft 365 Apps users. Though Cutover migration supports the migration of 2000 mailboxes, Microsoft recommends migrating 150 users or fewer at once.
IMAP migration is for users who want to migrate only emails from their current environment. It allows the migration of a maximum of 500,000 items from a user’s mailbox. Further, the maximum size that can be migrated is 35 MB. IT admins need to provide a list of users to migrate in each batch by using a CSV file to carry out the migration.
Since Staged migration doesn’t support the migration of Exchange 2010, we’ll not elaborate on the process. On the other hand, will discuss the other two procedures in detail.
Minimal Hybrid to Quickly Migrate Exchange 2010 Mailboxes to Microsoft 365
- Must Use Exchange 2010, Exchange 2013, and/or Exchange 2016 server on-premises.
- Must be planning to migrate to Office 365 over the course of a few weeks or less.
- Must not intend to continue to run directory synchronization to manage users
Steps of Minimal Hybrid Migration
- Step 1. Verify You Own the Domain.
- Step 2. Start Express Migration with Minimal Hybrid
- Step 3. Create Users in Office 365 by Running Directory Synchronization
- Step 4. Assign Microsoft 365 Licenses to Your Users
- Step 5. Start User Mailbox Data Migration.
- Step 6. Update DNS Records to Mail Flow.
Let’s dive in.
Also Read: How to Perform Office 365 Tenant to Tenant Migration Step By Step?
Detailed Cutover Migration to Migrate Exchange 2010 to Office 365 using PowerShell
In this section, we’ll walk through the step-by-step procedure to carry out a cutover migration using PowerShell.
- Start Preparing for Cutover Migration :
- Add on-premises Exchange organization as an accepted domain
- Configure Outlook Anywhere on the on-premise Exchange server
- Verify whether you are able to connect with Outlook Anywhere or not
- Assign necessary permissions to access mailboxes in Exchange
- Deactivate Unified Messaging(UM)
- Create Migration EndPoint:
Office 365 uses a migration endpoint for connecting and communicating with the source email system. For creating a migration endpoint, first, you need to connect to Exchange Online.
Then, try executing the following commands in Exchange Online PowerShell;
$Credentials = Get-Credential
New-MigrationEndpoint -ExchangeOutlookAnywhere -Name CutoverEndpoint -ConnectionSettings $TSMA.ConnectionSettings
- Create a Cutover migration batch:
- Specify the admin user account credentials for the Exchange server.
- If the connection settings are not detected by the Autodiscover service, then try entering the following information.
The fully qualified domain name(FQDN) of the Exchange server that hosts the mailboxes that you’re migrating and the FQDN of the proxy server for the Exchange server.
- Give a name for the migration batch and hit Next.
- List the admins who should receive the report and select whether you want to manually or automatically start the migration.
- Start the cutover migration batch:
Run the following command to start the migration batch named ExampleCutoverMigration to migrate Exchange 2010 to Office 365.
Start-MigrationBatch -Identity ExampleCutoverMigration
- Route your mail to Office 365:
Once the migration process is complete, you need to make sure that the MX record is pointing to Office 365 previously which was pointing to the source email system.
By confirming this, you will be absolutely sure that your emails are successfully delivered to the destination.
- Remove Cutover Migration Batch
Once everything is in its place, notify the users that their emails are now in Office 365. After that, you can delete the cutover migration batch by running the following PowerShell command.
Remove-MigrationBatch -Identity ExampleCutoverMigration
- Start assigning users licenses before they get expired.
Complete IMAP Migration Process to Migrate Exchange 2010 to Office 365 Including PowerShell
As you already know IMAP migration is applicable to migrate emails only. However, there are certain tasks you need to consider before the migration.
- Prepare IMAP migration
- Add on-premises Exchange organization as an accepted domain
- Add each user to Office 365 so that they will have a mailbox
- Obtain the fully qualified domain name(FQDN)
- Set up the firewall requirements
- Assign the administrator permissions
- Sign in and import the cmdlets to use Exchange Online PowerShell
- Create Comma Separated Value(CSV) file for IMAP migration
- Determine the users whose mailboxes you want to migrate
- Each row contains certain attributes such as Email Address, User Name, and Password which are necessary for the migration
- Create IMAP migration endpoint
Office 365 uses a migration endpoint for connecting and communicating with the source email system. The migration endpoint also defines the number of mailboxes to migrate concurrently and the number of mailboxes to synchronize simultaneously.
Run the below command to create a migration endpoint in order to migrate Exchange 2010 to Office 365;
New-MigrationEndpoint -IMAP -Name IMAPEndpoint -RemoteServer imap.contoso.com -Port 993 -Security SSL
To verify whether it worked or not, run the below command;
Get-MigrationEndpoint IMAPEndpoint | Format-List EndpointType,RemoteServer,Port,Security,Max*
- Create an IMAP migration batch
- Prepare a CSV file: In the CSV file that you will use to migrate, make sure that the content of users’ mailboxes contains a row for each user.
- On the “Select the mailboxes” screen, locate the CSV file that you prepared in the previous step, and then click Next. Refer to the following screenshot:
- Next, on the IMAP Configuration screen, specify the connection settings for the server from which you want to migrate mailbox data for a smooth migration. Have a look at the screenshot below:
- Provide a name for the migration batch, and click Next.
- Choose an option whether you want to manually or automatically start the migration.
- Route your mail to Office 365:
Previously MX record was pointing to the source email system, so once the migration process is complete, you need to make sure that the MX record is pointing to Office 365.
By confirming this, you will ascertain that your emails are successfully delivered to the destination.
- Remove IMAP Migration Batch
Once you are absolutely sure that everything is in its place, notify the users that their emails are now in Office 365. After doing that, you can delete the cutover migration batch by running the following PowerShell command.
Remove-MigrationBatch -Identity IMAPBatch1
[Note: Usually, a large-sized migration process is been accomplished in batches. You have to create multiple batches. So, how would you manage migration batches in Exchange Online?
Well, it’s simple. Admins can use the E-mail migration wizard in the Exchange Admin Center by using Exchange Online PowerShell. Admins can also control when a migration batch is started.]
As you can see that whether it’s Cutover migration or IMAP migration, the execution process is very lengthy and time-consuming.
Hence, it’s suggested to opt for the next method which is a comparatively easy and quick approach when migrating Exchange 2010 to Office 365 migration.
Let’s have a look at the approach.
Best way to Migrate Exchange 2010 to Office 365 Using the Below Tool
If we talk about migrating Exchange 2010 mailboxes to Office 365, then choosing a tried and tested solution is a must. Any unfortunate incident during the process can cause serious harm to an organization.
If you looking to migrate from offline EDB files to Office 365, then, we recommend users go with SysTools Exchange Recovery Tool which permits users to migrate Exchange 2010 mailboxes into Microsoft 365. The users just need to load the EDB file containing Exchange mailboxes into the software and choose Office 365 as the export option. This utility offers numerous advanced sets of features that ensure that the migration process is completed without any hassle.
You can download a free trial version of the software on Windows OS to get an overview of the working features of the software.
Migrate Exchange 2010 to Office 365 Using the Professional Tool
As mentioned at the beginning of the write-up, the tried and tested tool is proved to be the straightforward and easy-to-understand interface for carrying out this overwhelming process.
Just a few clicks and the rest leave it to the software. Let’s go through the working steps of the tool.
Step 1. Download from the given link. Follow the guidelines and run it on your computer.
Step 2. Select the Source and Destination as Exchange & Office 365 respectively. Further, click on the workloads(such as Emails, Contacts, and Calendars) that you want to migrate.
Step 3. Go to the Source tab, and select the Exchange server version as required. Then, fill out the necessary fields.
Step 4. Next, navigate to the Destination tab, and enter the Office 365 Admin Email and Application ID. After that, validate the permission.
Step 5. Go to the Users tab, Fetch source users through various options, and map them with the destination.
Step 6. At last, click on Start Migration to migrate Exchange Server 2010 to Microsoft Office 365.
If you have hosted Exchange, and you want to migrate from hosted Exchange to Office 365, then follow this guide.
Additional Benefits of Using The Above Software:
- The tool allows you to easily transfer emails, contacts, and calendars without a single loss of data.
- It preserves the folder hierarchy of the source account even after the migration.
- Additionally, it maintains data integrity throughout the process.
- In addition to that, you can migrate the ‘n’ number of Exchange mailboxes to Office 365. And, the tool does not put any limitation on account size and no. of mailboxes.
- It provides you with various smart features such as Workload Selection and Date Filter.
- This software also facilitates ‘Re-run Exchange Migration’ so that you can retry the migration of failed items.
- Also, with the ‘Stop & Start Migration’ function, you can easily pause and resume the process any time you want.
Also Read: How to Migrate from GoDaddy to Microsoft 365? Complete Guide
On-premise Exchange server has a major limitation that can’t be denied. And, that is Exchange servers work on a fixed life cycle. After that, Microsoft stops the end support. This means you will be able to continue running the Exchange version(in this case Exchange 2010) but after it reaches the end support it will no longer fix bugs or update security features. Hence, to keep your crucial on-premise data protected it’s advisable to migrate Exchange 2010 to Office 365 using an appropriate method.
Frequently Asked Queries
Q1. Why is Office 365 better than Exchange?
Microsoft Office 365 offers a cloud storage facility, which is fairly beneficial for users, in terms of collaboration, accessibility, and productivity. With Office 365, you get professional business communication software like Microsoft Teams, Skype for Business, etc along with email solutions of Exchange Online. Being a subscription-based model, users find it more appealing than the Exchnage server. These are only a few factors that set Office 365 above the Exchange server.
Q2. How long does it take to migrate Exchange 2010 mailboxes to Office 365?
It depends upon various factors such as the total size of data to migrate, the approach to perform this migration, system configuration, network bandwidth, etc. For instance, if you have to migrate 1TB of data to Office 365, and you choose a manual method, then it can take days to complete. Whereas, if you choose the above-mentioned software then you can migrate the data to the destination within the same day.
Q3. How to decommission Exchange 2010 after migration to Office 365?
Before decommissioning Exchange 2010, you should not use the Exchange Server 2010 for at least 2 days (1 week or 2 is suggested).
Follow the below-listed steps accordingly:
Step 1. In the very first step, you have to remove Public Folders.
- Go to Toolbox >> Public Folder Management Console >> Remove Public Folders.
Step 2. Now, you have to remove Exchange Mailboxes.
- Navigate to Exchange Management Console >> Remove User Mailboxes
Step 3. Then use below PowerShell cmdlets to Remove Arbitration Mailboxes in Exchange Management Shell
- Get-Mailbox -Database -Arbitration | Remove-Mailbox – Arbitration –RemoveLastArbitrationMailboxAllowed
Step 4. Now you have to delete the Public Folder database and Mailbox Database.
- Go to Server Configuration >> Mailbox location in the Exchange Management Console >> Remove Public Folder database and Mailbox Database.
Step 5. Then you have to delete or remove Offline Address Book details from Organization
- Navigate to Configuration >> Mailbox >> Offline Address Book tab located in the Exchange Management Console.
Step 6. Now you can uninstall the setup of Exchange Server 2010 from the Control Panel of your system.
Step 7. If you want to remove Exchange Server roles, then use the below listed PowerShell commands and administrator.
- setup.com /mode:Uninstall /roles:HT