Read time 11 minutes

Summary: The article discusses migrating from Hosted Exchange to On-Premises Exchange, highlighting the need for careful planning due to the lack of a predefined method. It outlines a step-by-step procedure for the migration and compares the costs and benefits of both hosting solutions. The article recommends using Kernel Migrator for Exchange Server, a migration tool, for a smoother and more secure transition.

Hosted Exchange presents an ideal solution for small-sized businesses with relatively modest data management needs. It offers robust communication security and ensures instant data accessibility. However, as an organization expands, the cost of managing hosted Exchange data can escalate, and the vendor must continually adapt to accommodate the growing data load. In such circumstances, on-premises hosting becomes a compelling choice for business owners looking to migrate data to an in-house environment. With on-premises hosting, you gain complete control over your data, eliminating the need to rely on the vendor for implementing desired changes promptly.

Hosted Exchange to On-Premises Exchange Migration Strategy

Herein lies the challenge for Exchange Administrators: migrating hosted Exchange mailboxes to an on-premises Exchange Server lacks a pre-defined method. Therefore, meticulous planning of the migration strategy becomes imperative. Let’s initiate the process with a methodical, step-by-step procedure:

  1. Analyze your hosted Exchange data: Prior to embarking on the migration process, it is essential to conduct a comprehensive analysis of your requirements. Assess whether your burgeoning infrastructure can be effectively managed within the hosted Exchange environment. While it’s true that migrating may come with an associated cost increase, it’s crucial to consider the added benefits such as enhanced data availability, heightened security measures, adherence to Service Level Agreements (SLAs), and ensuring compliance with regulations like SOX between the client and vendor. If these hosted services align with your needs, it may be prudent to refrain from initiating a migration. It’s important to keep in mind that the cost of services can escalate as you expand, due to the necessity of obtaining a Client Access License for each instance of Microsoft Office.
  2. Manually create the data to a separate text file: When transitioning to a dedicated Exchange Server, your initial challenge lies in accessing mailboxes on a hosted platform that you don’t own. This platform may not facilitate direct data transfers between Exchange Servers. Instead, you’ll need to manually create user profiles, contacts, distribution lists, and their respective members, painstakingly documenting these details in a text file.
  3. Create a forwarding email address and contact address for each user: Establish forwarding email addresses for each user originating from distinct email domains. This step is crucial to ensure uninterrupted email communication, as the propagation of MX Records can take a significant amount of time. Additionally, craft a corresponding contact address for each forwarding email at the destination. Lastly, seamlessly integrate the contact address with the forwarding email, enabling the seamless receipt of emails.
  4. Save mailbox data in PST and import it to on-premises Exchange: Once you’ve successfully set up users, contacts, distribution lists, conference rooms, meeting rooms, and all the necessary mailbox components, the next step is to populate them with data, a straightforward process. Begin by saving mailbox data in a PST (Personal Storage Table) file within the Hosted Outlook application. Following this, import the PST file into the onsite Exchange Server profile. After completing the migration, provide users with instructions on accessing their accounts on the new server and ensuring the seamless forwarding of their email addresses from the hosted environment to the on-premises Exchange Server.

Prior to embarking on the migration process, it is essential to conduct a comprehensive assessment of the significance that both on-premises and hosted Exchange solutions offer to your business. A detailed comparison table outlining key parameters that influence usage, requirements, and the associated benefits of each platform should be consulted.

On-Premises Exchange Hosted Exchange
Purchase Cost You need to pay a single amount while purchasing the license. You can pay the provider on a monthly or annual basis.
Maintenance Cost The additional hardware and software cost are required along with the maintenance support from the IT Administrator. He provider charges you as per your usage and subscription plan. You can also ask for any change in the environment flexibly.
Storage Cost No additional storage is required once the hardware specification has met the requirement. You need to ask your provider regarding upgrading the server size limits.
Deployment cost A capital amount to required to deploy and create whole exchange environment. You are dependent on your service provider that how quickly it can create the environment suitable for your business.
IT environment management cost A dedicated IT team is required to constantly monitor and upgrade the server changes. You require the minimal task needs to perform at your side as the provider will make sure of availability and security of data.
Scalable Scaling up and down means changing the hardware and software resources. You need to mention your requirement to the provider, and it will take of all the changes.
Administrative requirement A well-established Exchange server environment will require only to take backup and upgrade based on your need. You are dependent on the service provider and its team for all the administrative tasks.

This comprehensive procedure outlines the migration process from a hosted Exchange environment to an on-premises Exchange server. It necessitates manual intervention by the Administrator for each mailbox, involving the transfer of data in PST format to the target account. It’s essential to note that this method is not officially endorsed by Microsoft and is susceptible to encountering various errors and warnings at each stage. Additionally, there is a risk of data imbalance, where data from one mailbox might inadvertently end up in another. Furthermore, this approach does not guarantee data consistency or security. Therefore, it is strongly recommended to seek the assistance of a professional tool capable of seamlessly accessing hosted Exchange mailboxes and transferring them to a new on-premises Exchange Server for a smoother and more secure migration process.

Kernel Migrator for Exchange Server

Introducing Kernel Migrator for Exchange Server, an exceptional Exchange migration tool designed to seamlessly facilitate mailbox migration across a variety of Exchange server scenarios, including cross-forest migration, intra-forest transitions, hosted environments, hybrid setups, and on-premises configurations. With this versatile solution, you gain the ability to effortlessly select specific mailboxes, apply custom filters, conveniently schedule migrations, and ultimately receive comprehensive migration reports. In the following sections, we will walk you through the step-by-step process of utilizing this powerful software for your migration needs.

  1. Start the software and click the option to create a new migration project.Start Exchange migrator software
  2. Input a new Project name. click OK.Input a project name
  3. Create a new job for the mailbox.Create a job for mailbox
  4. Select the Project name and then provide a name to the migration job. Click Next.Provide a name to the migration job
  5. Select the Hosted Exchange from the drop-down. Provide the username and password. Click Next.Select the Hosted Exchange
  6. Provide Exchange Server name, its connecting URL and its log on activity. Then click Next.Provide Exchange server name
  7. Select the Exchange Server as the destination. Input its IP address and credentials. Click Next.Select the destination
  8. Select the Mailbox and Public Folder where you want to save the data. Click Next.Select the mailbox where you want to save
  9. The tool will try to map the source and destination mailboxes. But if it does not find the similar mailbox, then it will show the message.Map the source and destination mailboxesClick Yes if you want to manually create the objects.
  10. Manually create the objects in the target Exchange.Create the object
  11. You can add the suffix to the domain name of the object. The new object will have the same name suffixed by the selected domain name. If you select the copy option, then the destination object will have the same password as source object’s password. Also select the target container for the new objects.Add the suffix to the domain name
  12. A message shows that new objects are created. Click OK.New objects are created
  13. Map the source and target objects. Click Next.Map the source and target objects
  14. Select the permissions and storage limits to migrate. Click Next.Select the permission
  15. Map the email suffixes between source and target. Click the Add button.Map the email suffixes
  16. Select the source email address, and target email address suffix. Click OK.Select the source and email address sufix
  17. Click Next.Click next
  18. Input the names of the accounts which will get the notifications at various stages.Input the name of account
  19. Verify the details and click Next.Verify the details
  20. Schedule the time when you want to start the migration. You can also choose to run the migration immediately. Click Finish.Schedule the migration job
  21. If you choose to run the migration immediately, then a message will ask you to start the migration. Click Yes.Start the migration process
  22. The Mailbox Configuration tab shows the status of the mailbox migration job.Status of mailbox migration
  23. You can also check the properties of the migration with whole migration job and source and target details. Click OK.Process completed

Final Words

Kernel Migrator for Exchange efficiently manages all aspects of your migration process, providing you with peace of mind by mitigating the potential risks of data loss or corruption. Instead of navigating through various permissions required from your hosted vendor prior to initiating the migration, our tool streamlines the process, ensuring a seamless transition of data from on-premises to Hosted Exchange migration and vice versa, all with remarkable speed and precision.

Kernel Migrator for Exchange