Google Groups can be migrated as part of your entire migration plan or as an independent project, depending on your business needs. You can choose to migrate each group to an Office 365 group or to a shared mailbox.
By default, the Cloudiway platform migrates a group to an Office 365 group. An Office 365 group is used to communicate, collaborate, and schedule events from within a user’s inbox, in an area dedicated to groups. In comparison, an Office 365 shared mailbox is used when a group of people need to monitor and send email from a common email address rather than from individuals.
You can override the default on a per-group basis with the Cloudiway group migration platform. As a result, you can achieve total flexibility during a Google Groups migration to Office 365.
The path to migration is straightforward. In five steps and with very little setup, your Google Groups will be migrated to your intended target. The steps are:
We take your privacy and security seriously at Cloudiway, and we have invested significant effort into making our platform and your data secure. Cloudiway provides a cloud-based application hosted in Windows Azure. It means that the software and data are centrally hosted and accessed by clients using a web browser and internet connection. In addition, Cloudiway’s SaaS benefits from Windows Azure’s certifications, ensuring security of the infrastructure, network and physical security layers of the Cloudiway cloud.
For total assurance, Cloudiway provides auditing tools, secure, authenticated data connections and a logging system. More specifically:
*For the delta pass mechanism, the URL of the source group is used. This ensures that no data is duplicated, and for efficiency, only the changes are propagated. We automatically delete inactive records after 90 days, or upon request.
In addition, because the Cloudiway platform needs credentials to connect to the source and the target, you define connectors to connect to them and enter credentials that will be used for the connection. These credentials are stored encrypted using AES 256.
For complete peace of mind, we recommend that you create a temporary migration account during your migration which you can delete at the completion of your project.
Cloudiway’s software platform has been designed and developed to support large migrations.
The on-demand migration engine is able to allocate the migration capacity that you need to migrate the volume of data of your choice in the time slot that you have allocated for your migration.
Please bear in mind that Office 365 can heavily throttle users. When you perform too many calls, Office 365 begins throttling and decreases the number of calls that can be performed each minute, thus reducing the migration throughput. Cloudiway constantly attempts to work at the maximum capacity allowed by Office 365 and is able to achieve excellent throughput.
The Cloudiway platform doesn’t use any Google APIs so there are no limitations imposed. The speed of migration will only be limited by internet speed and the transfer protocol (HTTP).
4.1. What can be migrated
When migrating from Google Groups, all of the following items can be migrated:
During migration, Cloudiway creates the target objects (Office 365 group or shared mailbox) and automatically adds its existing members and their roles.
4.2. Migration considerations
Some content from Google Groups cannot be migrated:
It’s important to distinguish between attachments and embedded files. When a file is attached to Google Groups content, it is migrated. However, embedded files and folders are not migrated during Google Groups migration. As a result, their links will continue to work after the migration is complete. If you choose to migrate Google Drive files separately, bear in mind that any embedded files in a migrated group will continue to be accessed from the source rather than the target.
The Cloudiway platform doesn’t use any Google APIs to access Google Groups. To perform the migration, you will need to create a new Google user to use during migration and manually give it manager permission to each source Google group that you wish to migrate.
If any of your users have created a group, they will also need to add the new Google user to the group with manager permission. It’s therefore important that you notify your users that any groups they have created cannot be migrated unless this new user is added.
Delta passes can be used with group migration to ensure all batch migrations are completed. The Cloudiway platform uses the URL of the source group as the unique ID during migration. This ensures a group is only migrated once. However, this also means that a new reply on a group that has already been migrated will never be migrated.
This guide is aimed at experienced system administrators who are capable of connecting to remote systems and using a variety of administration tools.
Although we provide support for our own products, we do not provide support for third-party products such as PowerShell or server administration of Google or Exchange.
If you are concerned you might have any difficulty completing these steps, please consider a solution with our consulting team, contactable via firstname.lastname@example.org. This will ensure a fast, cost-effective and stress-free implementation.
5.1. Before you start
Before you start, you will need to ensure you have the details outlined in the following table.
|Cloudiway login||Stores details and provides communication between the systems you already use.||https://apps.cloudiway.com|
|Knowledge base access||Our extensive knowledge base is always accessible, with videos, troubleshooting tools, samples and more.||https://kb.cloudiway.com|
|Google account with group management rights||This standard Google account must have group management rights to each Google group you wish to migrate. It must also have its default language set to English for migration to work.||We recommend you create a migration account especially for migration. After all migrations are complete, simply delete this account.|
|Office 365 account with exchange admin rights||Used to create security groups and manage membership. This doesn’t have to be the tenant’s admin account. However, it must be an administrator account if you wish to migrate the permissions. The account must be able to bypass SSO and authenticate using username/password credentials with the format: email@example.com (with a password set to never expire).||We recommend you create a migration account especially for migration. After all migrations are complete, simply delete this account. We provide steps below to help you set up an account if you don’t already have one.|
5.2. G Suite — Set up migration account with manager access
For the Cloudiway platform to connect to each of your Google Groups, it will use a standard user account which has been granted manager access to each of your groups. You will need to add the user’s credentials to the Cloudiway platform, so we recommend that you create a new G Suite user especially for migration, then delete the user when migration is complete.
5.3. Office 365 — Set up an account with impersonation privileges (only if you migrate to Shared Mailboxes)
An account with impersonation privileges can access up to 100 groups concurrently. Therefore, by default, Cloudiway allows you to migrate 100 groups concurrently.
Below are the steps to show you how to set up impersonation using the Office 365 Exchange Admin Center. If you don’t already have impersonation set up, please follow the steps below.
6.1. Create your Google Groups source connector
For Cloudiway to migrate your groups, it needs to be able to communicate with both your source and target domains. To do this, Cloudiway uses connectors, which are configured on apps.cloudiway.com. You will need to set up a connector for each source tenant you wish to migrate and each target tenant. Follow the steps below to configure a Google Groups source connector.
6.2. Create your Office 365 target connector
With the source connector now configured on the Cloudiway platform, it’s time to create and configure the target connector. Follow the steps below to configure an Office 365 target connector.
Each account with impersonation privileges can access up to 100 groups concurrently. Therefore, by default, each Cloudiway connector can migrate 100 concurrent users. If you wish to speed up your migration, you should set up additional Office 365 target connectors on the Cloudiway platform and associate different accounts with admin access to each one.
6.3. Import groups with the Get Groups command
The Cloudiway platform provides a tool called Get Groups which returns a list of all your groups that have had the Google migration user added. This is a useful tool to run after your end-users have had time to add the Google migration user to their own groups as it will provide you with a complete picture of groups to be migrated.
You should therefore run this tool after an agreed deadline with your end-users, and prior to group migration. The output will be used as your default group migration list. This is by far the simplest method of listing the groups to be migrated because no other steps are required.
The tool will return a list of all groups that the ‘migration’ user has been added to with manager access. The list will appear in the Group List area of the Cloudiway platform. From this list, you can check what is due to be migrated prior to migration, edit target URLs, change target recipients and delete any groups that don’t need to be migrated.
You can also download the results in CSV format for your own records or to make editing changes, and then upload the updated CSV file to the Cloudiway platform as your final list of groups to be migrated.
Note: you cannot add new entries to the CSV file: they must exist on the Cloudiway platform already. If you need to add a new Google Group, either re-run the Get Groups command (which will add newly-available groups to the existing list) or add a site manually using the steps below.
6.4. Add a Google Group manually to Cloudiway
You can manually add the details of a Google Group to your list on the Cloudiway platform. Due to the lengthy URLs, we recommend you only use this option if it’s impossible to rerun the Get Groups command.
You might wish to test migration on a test group you’ve set up especially for that purpose. In this case, adding the group manually might be preferable to using Get Groups.
6.5. Import or create your user details
In order to migrate access rights for the list of users who have subscribed to the Google group, a mapping table of users must be defined. A list of mail users is used as a mapping table as it defines who has access to the different groups.
If you have already migrated mail via Cloudiway, your users will already be available on the Mapping Table menu of Cloudiway’s group migration. If not, you can upload a user list via CSV, or manually add each user on the Cloudiway platform.
You can add a user to the mapping table without assigning a migration license. Each user will, however, need to be assigned a license type — Standard or No License (used for adding users to your mapping table regardless of migration plans).
6.5.1. Option 1: CSV import
If you have a CSV file of all your groups, you can upload the file to Cloudiway. The file must have the following fields in the header row:
A sample CSV file is available for download during the steps outlined below. If you perform more than one upload, any user data already uploaded will not be overwritten by following uploads. Therefore, duplicates can occur.
6.5.2. Option 2: Create a single user
Many of our first-time customers create a single user for testing purposes. This provides a means of watching the migration process without affecting all users. Single users can also be created for migrations affecting just a few users.
6.6. Activate and monitor your migration
Now that you have performed all the pre-migration steps within your tenants and within Cloudiway, you’re ready to migrate. We recommend you run a test migration on a single group first to check that your configuration produces the outcome you expect.
To start your migration, select the group(s) or batch you wish to migrate and click on the Start button on the Migration menu at the bottom. Your batch will be scheduled and will begin as soon as resources are available. By default, a hundred migrations can be run concurrently.
Cloudiway provides an extensive knowledge base with many resources, including common error messages, video guides and downloads.
Please visit the entire knowledge base here (where you can search for keywords or read through topics): https://kb.cloudiway.com/
The knowledge base also contains information on how you can ask for further support, should you require it.