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Archive Migration | A Beginner’s Guide

An archive migration is an important aspect of your cloud migrationworkspace-home. Not all archives are created equal, and there are many considerations during your migration. You have many options to maximize the benefits of your migration for the specific needs of your end users and your company. When you choose to migrate to Office 365, don’t forget about moving your archives with you in the best way possible for your business.

Historically, email archiving was expensive and difficult. The now outdated, proprietary systems needed a very specific tool to migrate the data. Now, with the prevalence of archiving, there are standards for the format of the data that makes it much easier to migrate your archives. Additionally, there are better, inexpensive tools that make the process much more efficient.

There are two migration paths available: central repository archive versus in-place. Choosing a CRA for your archive migration is the more traditional option. Your mail is copied from its original location to a repository where it cannot be changed beyond the actions of the compliance officers. The other option is an in-place migration, where the archive is the original mail in the original location.

The Purpose of an Archive Migration

For some companies and industries, it is required to keep archived records for a specific period of time. For example, archiving is a requirement for HIPAA-compliant organizations and financial firms. For others, it is a necessary precaution and a corporate mandate. An important function of an archive migration is the ability to find and serve data at a later time. For example, a historical record would be important to reference in the event of a lawsuit.

A function of this migration is not only keeping the information, but purging information as well. A retention policy sets a rule that deletes emails based on certain specifications: date, sender, size, etc. This is useful for freeing up storage and getting rid of outdated, irrelevant information.


An archive migration is an efficient way to manage your old and new data together. The data is processed so that it maintains metadata and allows you to search through it more thoroughly. You have the option of integrating your old information into your new cloud service and the ability to take advantage of the new tools with it.

End User Considerations

For your end users, there are a few things to consider when migrating your archived data. One consideration is the planning that goes into this process. Depending on the amount of data to be migrated, this will take time and bandwidth. Since there may potentially be a time that data is unavailable during your migration, information needs to be prioritized by the user and the date. This ensures that the more important information will be accessible sooner to the end user.

Another consideration is end user access to the data. There are a few options for end user access that you can choose based on your organization’s needs. The archive can be entirely dependent of the individual. Another option is giving the user the option to make their own retention policies or archive data themselves. The migration can be customizable to fit the needs of your organization and the roles of the users within.

End user training is another important consideration. Accessing the archives after your migration might be a completely different process than the previous one in place. Having support is necessary to train your end users to use the new archive and minimize disruptions and frustrations. End user training will help them understand how it works and continue their business without interruption.

An experienced Microsoft Partner is the perfect way to get started with your Office 365 migration. Whether your focus is migrating archives, security management, or documents, let Strategic SaaS address your Office 365 management needs.

Learn more about your migration options with a free Office 365 consultation and cost comparison!



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