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GroupWise to Office 365 (Outlook) - Migration Details

This is a detailed list of what is and what is not transferring over when the college migrates from GroupWise to Microsoft Office 365 (Outlook). The items that are not transferring over are denoted in red.

Groupwise to Office 365 Migration Notes


All shared content such as calendars, folders, address books will be transferred, but the sharing links will need to be setup in Office 365.


Rules and Vacation Rules do not migrate.   Clients will be responsible for recreating their mailbox rules.

Signature Blocks

Signature Blocks do not migrate.

Message Size

Office 365 does not allow message sizes over 25MB.   Any messages over 25MB will not be migrated to the Office 365 system by Netmail Archive.   An error for that specific will be generated by the software when the EWS service of Office 365 rejects the message due to size restraints. 

Address Books

Address books are being migrated to Exchange, however there are slight differences between how contacts and address books are handled.   All address books are migrated except system address book as Contact Folders in Outlook.

Frequent Contacts:  In GroupWise, the system maintains an address book called “Frequent Contacts”.  This is a system generated address book and tends to be unorganized and contain a lot of redundant and internal addresses.  While we can migrate this address book, the recommendations are that this address book not be migrated and that users move all contacts they wish to keep to their personal address books.  In addition users should look to delete duplicate contacts or consolidate contact information so that duplicate entries are not created in Exchange.   If multiple contacts for same user are found in same address book they will be merged and some information may be lost.

Shared Address Books:  Address book shares are not migrated.  Users will have to re-share their address books in Outlook.

Personal Groups:   A personal group or personal distribution list is a collection of named contacts consisting of either internal or external users.   When viewing membership of a group from the source mail system, group members and their attributes such as phone number, company, etc… are visible.  These properties are displayed because the names in the Group are linked to the contact information within the address book.  When Groups are migrated, the migration process can only read object information contained in the Group object which consists of the Group Name, Group Member Name and Email addresses.  No other information is extracted or migrated and links to the original contacts are therefore broken.   The Netmail migrator will perform a validation against the Exchange Global Address List (GAL) and relink any internal accounts it finds but it will not relink personal address book contacts for external contacts.  Users will have to re-add these users to the Group in Outlook to reestablish the link and subsequent contact details.   Migration of nested groups is supported.

Organization Contacts:  In GroupWise, one can create an Organization contact and apply contact information against the organization.  Organization contacts are migrated as personal contacts, showing up in Outlook at a regular contact.

Resource Contacts: GroupWise allows user to create a resource contact, however, since resources are generally system defined objects such as meeting rooms and equipment and are present in the GAL, no resource contacts are migrated.


GroupWise was very flexible with respect to working with appointments.   An appointment could be saved in any folder in the GroupWise client and the appointments or task would be displayed in the GroupWise Calendar.   This is not the case in Exchange.   In Exchange; only accepted appointments in the Calendar folder are shown in the calendar view.   Messaging Architects has implemented a feature whereby any appointment which exists in folders other than the Calendar will be automatically accepted and moved to the Calendar folder of Outlook.  

1. Deleting a migrated appointment will send a rejection notification to all recipients but will NOT delete the appointment from all recipient mailboxes even if the user is not the original organizer of the appointment.

2. Reoccurring appointments will be migrated as individual appointments.  Deleting or modifying a migrated appointment will not automatically modify all other reoccurring appointments. It is advised to migrate only a finite   number of future appointments 1-2 months and force users to recreate appointments in Outlook to make use of Outlook recurring appointment features.

3. All links between appointments and recipients will be broken during migration so that any modifications or changes to an appointment will not automatically update appointments in the recipients’ calendar.

4. We will be migrating all past and 2 years of future of calendar data.

Email Messages

Email message content and basic metadata is migrated to Exchange.   The following items will not be migrated:

a. User defined Subject Line (will migrate with original subject line)
b. Personalization Notes applied against email messages will be lost
c. Linked Contacts and Categories will not be transferred to Exchange
d. Sent Items Status Data will not be migrated as Exchange does not support this

Unconventional Folder Structures

Since Migrator must match root level folders with their equivalent counterparts in Exchange, the product assumes that root level folders such as MAILBOX, CALENDAR, TRASH, WORK IN PROGRESS are all stored as ROOT level folders.  If user has moved any of these folders under another folder, they will be migrated to Exchange as sub-folders, but the contents will not be inserted into the matching Exchange root level folder.

Users should move these folders back to their original locations prior to the preliminary archiving. Document 50709 is unavailable at this time.

TRASH and JUNK MAIL folders will not be migrated.

GroupWise Notes

GroupWise notes are migrated to Exchange as “All Day” personal appointments and placed in the calendar.  

Proxy Rights

Proxy rights differ significantly between GroupWise and Exchange.   GroupWise manages proxy by message type whereas Exchange manages proxy by folder through delegation rights.  By default, Migrator can only migrate proxy rights as delegate rights to the Inbox and Calendar but no other folders.   Customers are going to have to re-assign delegation rights based on required account access permissions.

Shared Folders

There is no concept of shared folder management in Exchange.  Users can elect to give permissions to a folder or folders but the system does not provide notification of that share, nor does the recipient have the ability to place that folder anywhere  within the existing folder system.  For every folder or mailbox shared, the account which it was shared from will be displayed in the Outlook folder navigation window and must be navigated independently to view folders and items. 

All shared folders will be migrated to Exchange as a personal folder in the account of the user owning the folder.    There is a provision if requested to archive content for each user accessing the share and migrate content to each user as a personal folder.  Once migrated they can be shared through delegate rights but there is no concept of shared folder.

Tech Service Desk: Contact and Hours

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Keywords:transfer transferring archives calendar GW email changes notes address book contacts signature shares rules Microsoft microsoft MS ms   Doc ID:50838
Owner:Sara S.Group:Parkland College
Created:2015-04-24 14:48 CDTUpdated:2016-09-21 16:18 CDT
Sites:Parkland College
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