For effective migration to Hosted Exchange 2010, you must implement a proper plan and for that, you need to have a clear understanding of your current network and messaging infrastructure. After that you can take a decision as how much amount of data should you want to migrate to the hosted service. This decision of yours is vital because this will determine the migration methods that would be appropriate and the time that the whole migration project would take. The larger your organization, the more investigation, analysis and information gathering you will require. One important thing to consider while migrating to Hosted Exchange 2010 is the compatibility of the third-party applications. Some of the third-party applications and add-ons that you are using with the messaging system of your current server may pose a problem while integrating with the hosted exchange. • Have a back-out plan: Prior to having a migration service contract with the hosted exchange service provider, you must have a back-out plan. This is because any type of issue may arise in the future regarding the service such as budgetary issues, changes in the organization’s security requirements, legal compliances or any type of dissatisfaction with the service providers. So, make sure that you draft a well-defined back-out plan in coordination with your prospective hosted exchange service provider during the service contract.
• Create Hosted Exchange account: Now that you have made a deal with your chosen hosting provider, the first step is to create your account. Next, you have to export your current Active Directory configuration using CSVDE. Now, the hosting provider imports your Active Directory objects to populate your new hosted exchange account.
• Modification of mail routing: In this step, the mail delivery address is changed from the older account to the new hosted exchange account.
• Verification of account configuration: After all the previous account configuration is migrated to your new account, you need to confirm it to your hosting provider. This step is vital and you have to thoroughly investigate. Login to your new hosted exchange 2010 account and check out the contacts, distribution lists, exchange mailboxes and resource mailboxes etc. to make sure that everything has been configured properly into the new account.
• Managing passwords: The old passwords are not transferred on to the new account. You can create new passwords for your mailboxes, contact lists etc. You can set your passwords manually and can also provide the hosting provider with a CSV file containing passwords, so that they can set the passwords in bulk.
• Copying of mailbox content: This is another vital step, in which you have to move the contents of your mailbox to the new exchange server. There are various methods of doing it and a hosting provider can suggest better depending upon the specific requirements of yours. After all the relevant data is migrated to the new account, the migration process is complete.
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