Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Manual Method for Google Apps to Office 365 Migration

Hello everybody, today we are going to discuss about Google Apps to Office 365 Migration process. It is not an easy task to perform so I will suggest that you first backup Gmail to Hard Drive before proceeding with the migration process. You should backup data because it may help you in case of any unforeseen situation taking place like data loss, power failure, etc.

Prerequisites for Migration

  1. Make sure IMAP is enabled in Gmail Account: You can check this by logging into Google Mail Account and then you have to go to Settings followed by Forwarding and POP/IMAP tab and now you will see IMAP Access section where IMAP Status will be displayed. Select Enable IMAP radio button if IMAP is not enabled and save changes. You can refer to fig 1 and fig 2 for this step.
    Figure 1: Settings

    Figure2: Accounts and Import
  2. Create a Google App Password: It is necessary to establish connection between Google Apps and Office 365. Gmail considers Outlook as a less secure App, which is why it does not allow straightaway connection to establish between Google Apps and Office 365 with one time verification. You will learn about this in the next section.
  3. Make sure that Google Apps user account is able to turn on 2 Step verification process. We will discuss about it in the next section.

Connect Google Apps to Office 365 and Outlook Account

Before establishing connection between Google Apps and Office 365 Account, you have to prepare Google Account for this by turning on its 2 Step verification process and creating Google App password.

2 – Step Verification

  1. To turn on 2 - step verification process, go to your Google Apps account and select My Account. You can see fig 3 for reference.
    Figure 3: My Account
  2. In My Account click on Select Sign in & Security and then click on 2-Step Verification in Password & Sign-in section and then click on Get Started to setup your cellphone with Google Apps. See fig 4 and 5 for reference.
    Figure 4: Sing-In & Security
    Figure 5: 2-Step Verification

  3. It will ask for Sign-in again. Just Sign in and enter your cellphone number and verify your phone number by entering sent code through text message on your cellphone.
  4. Now in Trust this Computer step click on Next, and confirm Turn on 2-step verification.

Create an App Password

  1. Again follow the same process until Sign in & Security and Password & Sign-in method select App Passwords and log in again.
  2. Now you have come to App Passwords page, here click on the Drop down List, select Other (Custom Name), and click on Generate button.
  3. Now you will see the 16-Character password generated. You can use this password without space to access your Google Apps.


Now we will proceed towards the migration process. Steps of migration are described below:
  1. Verify Your Domain
    First, you have to verify Office 365 Domain and then, Google Apps Domain.
  2. Add Users to Office 365
    Users can be added with license either one or more than one at a time.
  3. Create Google App Mailbox Migration List
    You have to create list of mailboxes for migration. You just need to know the Email ID, User Name and Password for each mailbox. You can migrate in batch of at the most 50000 mailboxes and the migration file should not be larger than 10 MB. You have to create a list of mailboxes in Microsoft Excel or any other Spreadsheet with three columns (Email ID, User Name and Password) and save Spreadsheet with .csv file format. You can see fig 6 for reference. Make sure that you haven’t added more than 50000 rows in migration file.
    Figure 6: List of Mailboxes with Credentials
  4. Connect Office 365 to Google Apps
    Now you have to connect Google Apps Account to Office 365 for communication between both the accounts. Office 365 comes with a tool for this, which is called Migration Endpoint. Follow below described steps for connection.
    1. Open Exchange Admin Center.
    2. Now to Go to Recipients and then Migration and then click on Symbol and select Migration endpoint. You can see fig 7 for reference.
      Figure 7: Migration endpoints
    3. Now click on + symbol to create a new Migration endpoint.
    4. Select IMAP on Select the migration endpoint type page.
    5. Set IMAP server to and leave all settings as default on configuration page and click on Next to proceed. If everything works well then you will see Enter general information page.
    6. Now in General information page enter Migration endpoint name and click on New to create Migration endpoint, you can see fig 8 for reference.
      Figure 8: Enter General Information
  5. Migrate Google App Mailboxes
    I would recommend you to go for a test to migrate 5 to 10 mailboxes at a time and analyze about how long it could take to migrate all mailboxes from Google Apps. It will be a better practice for you to proceed for a large number of mailbox migrations.
    So, let’s proceed for Google Mailbox migration to Office 365:
    1. Select Admin Centers and then Click on Exchange as shown in fig 9. 
      Figure 9: Admin Centers
    2. Now select Recipients and then Migration and then click on + symbol and then select Migrate to Office 365. See fig 10 for reference.
      Figure 10: Migrate to Exchange Online
    3. Now select IMAP migration and click on Next to proceed and you will be at Select the Users page.
    4. Now click on Browse to locate the .csv file for migration, in which you have mentioned all credential for mailboxes to be migrated.
    5. Now Office 365 will validate and check for any error in migration file and if everything goes well then it will display the total number of mailboxes, which you want to migrate. Just click on Next to proceed from here. You can see fig 11 for reference.
      Figure 11: Select the users
    6. Now select Migration endpoint which you have created and click on Next to proceed.
    7. Now in configuration page leave everything as default and click on Next to proceed.
    8. Now in Move migration page type a new name migration batch name and click on Next to proceed. You can also specify any folder which you want to exclude during migration here. See fig 12 for reference.
      Figure 12: Move configuration
    9. Now you will have landed to start the batch page. From here you can send migration report to anybody and even yourself. You just need to click on Browse and enter your email id to get migration report. Select Automatically start the batch and then select new to start migration process. You will see status as Syncing during migration. After successful completion of migration process you can verify whether all mailboxes have migrated or not. You just need to go to Recipients and then Migration where you will find the status of migration is Synced or not. See fig 13 for reference.
      Figure 13: Status of Synchronization
  6. Set Route from Google Apps to Office 365

    Now you have to change DNS record from Google Apps to Office 365 Account. It is also called MX record. Just follow below steps to change DNS record.
    1. First of all you have to Login to Office 365 Account and then go to Domains through left panel in Office 365 admin center. See fig 14 for reference.
      Figure 14: Domains
    2. Now select your domain, click on Fix issues, and select the option - What do I fix? Keep following the given instructions. You can see fig 15 for reference. It may take up to 70 hours to change MX record completely. Therefore, I will suggest you not to go for stop synchronization before 70 hours after completion of migration.
      Figure 15: Fix issues

  7. Stop Office 365 Synchronization with Google App Account
    Before preceding towards this step first make sure that each user mailboxes has migrated and synchronized successfully and no errors are received while sending/receiving mails.
    To stop Office 365 Synchronization you have to delete migration batch. After deletion of migration batch each information will be deleted from migration dashboard of Office 365.
    To delete migration batch just go to Migration Dashboard then select the batch and click on Delete. You can check whether migration the batch has been deleted or not by going through migration dashboard. If it is still listed at Migration Dashboard, it means Migration batch hasn’t been deleted and if it is not that means the migration batch has successfully been deleted.


We have discussed about Google Apps to Office 365 Migration Process in this post. It is very useful for those who want to move from Google Apps to Office 365 Account. The procedure is not a typically technical to perform but it is very risky. So, I will recommend you to first go for migration of 5 to 10 mailbox to check whether it is working or not. If you find any errors through the migration then try to remove them and migrate again. You have to keep your eyes on a couple of things before migrating like migration file (.csv file) creation, internet bandwidth, allowed permission to Google Apps account by Admin of Domain, etc. If you don’t want to go through these lengthy procedures for migration then you can use any third party tool to migrate from Google Apps to Office 365 Account. When using a third party tool, you just need to provide the credentials of Google Apps and Office 365 Account for migration.


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