This article describes the Onboarding process in detail.

Brief overview of the process is described in the Knowledge Base article Onboarding from IMAP server: Overview.

Phase 1. Account Creation
Phase 2. Data Migration
Phase 3: Delivery And End-User Cutover

 

PHASE 1. ACCOUNT CREATION

STEP 1: CREATE Smarsh Hosted Services HOSTED EXCHANGE ACCOUNT. First, create your new Hosted Exchange account. 

STEP 2: MIGRATION PLANNING. Once your new Hosted Exchange account is created,  Smarsh Hosted Services will contact you to discuss the migration process. If possible, please review this entire document prior to the call so that we may answer any questions you might have.

STEP 3: PROVIDING INFORMATION ABOUT CURRENT IMAP SERVER. There are several options for moving your mailbox content to your new Exchange server. Smarsh Hosted Services can connect to your current IMAP server. To do this, customer needs to provide with the following settings:

IMAP Export tool If you are migrating from IMAP server we will connect to it and pull the data from mailboxes. Please note that this way we can pull only mail items; contacts and calendars are to be migrated manually as IMAP protocol does not provision for these items.
Read the Knowledge Base article on Requirements for IMAP Export Tool for more onformation.

STEP 4: CREATING ACCOUNT OBJECTS. Smarsh Hosted Services creates mailboxes on the Exchange account after you provide a list of mailboxes.  We recommend using a template to create mailboxes.
Read the Knowledge Base article on What Active Directory user properties can I import from a CSV File? for more information.
You may also use a special template to import Distribution Lists. Contact Support for more information.

STEP 5: VERIFY ACCOUNT OBJECTS CREATED CORRECTLY. Smarsh Hosted Services will contact you once your account is set up and items created.  You will need to confirm that the account is configured correctly. It is vital that all the mailboxes and other addresses such as distribution lists exist so MX record propagation later in the process will work smoothly.

  1. Log in to your new Hosted Exchange account and review the list of mailboxes created to make sure the account has been configured properly.  Though user mailboxes will be created, passwords are not transferred to the new account.  Mailboxes will be assigned random passwords. New passwords are sent to Account Owner.
  2. Make note of any items that are missing or were not set up properly.  Provide detailed information about any discrepancies so we can quickly correct them.
  3. Contact Smarsh Hosted Services and inform us of whether the account is set up correctly. 
  4. When setup is confirmed, we will proceed with the migration.

STEP 6: ACTIVATE OPTIONAL ADD-ONS. Items like wireless devices and other additional services will need to be activated manually for the users that need them. If you have any questions on whether you need to activate something or need assistance with a activation of a service in CONTROL PANEL, don’t hesitate to contact Smarsh Hosted Services.

STEP 7: MODIFY MAIL ROUTING ON EXCHANGE ACCOUNT. Smarsh Hosted Services changes the mail routing on your Hosted Exchange account to deliver to your current IMAP server by enabling Mail Filter Redirection.Mail Filter Redirection will route mail sent to your new account to your current mail server (usually the current MX record) to simplify the migration process and limit the impact of changing MX records. This step will allow MX record propagation to occur seamlessly for your users. When we perform the cutover, mail will be routed to your new account instantly.
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Warning: This mail filter redirection will only forward email for addresses that exist on your Smarsh Hosted Services account including distribution lists and mail enabled public folders. If you have changed the naming convention for your email addresses you must add the old address as an alias for the user. If there is an address not being migrated over to Smarsh Hosted Services, this address will no longer receive mail once the mail filter redirection is in place and MX records are switched. 

Note:  If you are is using third-party filtering solution and would like to continue using it after cutover, instead of changing MX records now, you need to change the forwarding from filtering solution to Smarsh Hosted Services MX records at the point of cutover. Mail Filter Redirection is not being used in this case.

STEP 8: CHANGE MX RECORD. You will need to change your MX records to point to your new Exchange account and create Autodiscover record.

Note: It is extremely important that the MX records are created correctly to ensure mail delivery is not interrupted. Check and double-check the records as they are changed to ensure there are no issues. If you need assistance ensuring the change was made correctly, any of Smarsh Hosted Services support engineers can assist you.

  1. To find the target for the MX record, log in to CONTROL PANEL for the new 2010/2013 account and navigate to Home > Exchange servers and settings
  2. Change the MX record with your Registrar or the host of authoritative servers to point to the new account.  The administrator of your Registrar or the host of authoritative servers should be able to assist you with this.
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To create your Autodiscover record, contact your Registrar or the host of your authoritative servers and have a subdomain created for autodiscover.yourdomainname.com (insert your domain name instead of yourdomainname.com). Create a DNS CNAME record for this subdomain that points to Smarsh Hosted Services autodiscover address. You can find this address in CONTROL PANEL under Home > Exchange servers and settings. Read the Knowledge Base article on What is an Autodiscover record and why do I need one? for more information.

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PHASE 2. DATA MIGRATION
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STEP 9: COPY MAILBOX CONTENT. There are several options for moving your mailbox content to your new Exchange server. We will summarize the various options here in order of preference. If you will not be bringing mailbox data to Smarsh Hosted Services, you can skip this step. Smarsh Hosted Services can connect to your current IMAP server and perform data pull. To do this, you need to provide the following settings:

IMAP Export tool If you are migrating from IMAP server we will connect to it and pull the data from mailboxes. Please note that this way we can pull only mail items; contacts and calendars are to be migrated manually as IMAP protocol does not provision for these items.
Read the Knowledge Base article on Requirements for IMAP Export Tool for more onformation.

If end-users have contacts, calendars or any locally stored data to migrate, migration of these items will have to be done manually client-side as IMAP protocol does not provision for these items. Read the Knowledge Base article on Data migration from POP hosting to Smarsh Hosted Services for more information.  
Note: If you have data that you have to move manually, in some cases it may be more convenient to move data only once after cutover on the Step 15. Otherwise you will need to export and import data twice: before and after cutover.

STEP 10: VERIFY MAILBOX DATA COPIED SUCCESSFULLY. As soon as initial data pull is complete, you will get a notification asking to verify that your mailbox data has copied correctly.

  1. Check the mailboxes on your new Hosted Exchange account to ensure that there is data in them as appropriate. We recommend checking a few different mailboxes via Outlook Web Access to ensure there were no issues with the import.
  2. If there was data that did not get migrated or any other issues, please gather the details and relay the details to Smarsh Hosted Services.
  3. Notify Smarsh Hosted Services if the data migration is complete. If there are issues with the migration of data, we will work with you to resolve them.
  4. A date and time of cutover to the new account should be confirmed at this point. 

STEP 11: PRE-CONFIGURE OUTLOOK PROFILES. We recommend that you pre-configure a second profile on all your users' Outlook clients to connect to the new Exchange server. This allows you to spread the work out rather than having to touch every end-user machine when we do the cutover.
Important: Outlook 2003 is not supported in the Exchange 2010/2013 environment. Please make sure that a newer version of Outlook is installed for all users.
If you are using Outlook provided by Smarsh Hosted Services, it can be downloaded from CONTROL PANEL > Home > Downloads. Have users run the Outlook Profile Helper from the new account to create a new profile. This will connect them to the new mailbox. Outlook will then synchronize with the mailbox.  This will take some time, depending on the mailbox size and bandwidth.
Read the following Knowledge Base articles for more information:
What is Outlook Profile Helper? How Do I Use It?
How do I manually connect Outlook 2003/2007 to Exchange 2003/2007/2010 Server?
Outlook 2011 for Mac Setup Instructions

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PHASE 3. DELIVERY AND END-USER CUTOVER

 

STEP 12: CHECKING MX RECORDS. Smarsh Hosted Services checks if MX records have already been propagated through the Internet and customer is ready for cutover.

Note: If you are using third-party filtering solution and would like to continue using it after cutover, you need to change the forwarding from filtering solution to Smarsh Hosted Services MX record at this point.

STEP 13: CUTOVER TO NEW ACCOUNT.

  1. Smarsh Hosted Services will modify mail routing to deliver incoming mail to your Exchange account by disabling Mail Filter Redirection. 
  2. Customer makes final changes to DNS records for domain names listed under the account:
  3. You will need to configure all of your mail clients and devices to connect to the new server. We recommend creating the appropriate Autodiscover record first. Details on the clients or devices configuration can be found below.

ENTOURAGE/OUTLOOK 2011 

If you are using Outlook 2011 provided by Smarsh Hosted Services, it can be downloaded from CONTROL PANEL > Home > Downloads. We highly recommend using an Autodiscover record for the setup.
Read the Knowledge Base article on Outlook 2011 for Mac Setup Instructions for Outlook 2011 configuration.
Note:
Entourage users must have Entourage Web Services Edition installed in order to connect to an Exchange 2010/2013 server.  Once the necessary version is installed and set up, it should connect to users' mailboxes.  This will take some time, depending on the mailbox size and bandwidth.
Read the Knowledge Base article on Setting up Entourage Web Services for installation and setup instructions. We highly recommend using Outlook 2011 instead of Entourage because of improved stability and avoiding potential mailbox corruption.

OUTLOOK

Important: Outlook 2003 is not supported in the Exchange 2010/2013 environment. Please make sure that a newer version of Outlook is installed for all users. If you are using Outlook provided by Smarsh Hosted Services, it can be downloaded from CONTROL PANEL > Home > Downloads. Have users run the Outlook Profile Helper from the new account to create a new profile. This will connect them to the new mailbox. Outlook will then synchronize with the mailbox.  This will take some time, depending on the mailbox size and bandwidth.
Read the following Knowledge Base articles for more information:
What is Outlook Profile Helper? How do I use it?
How do I manually connect Outlook 2003/2007 to Exchange 2003/2007/2010 Server?

You may also want to do the following:

ACTIVESYNC

For ActiveSync devices, remove the old ActiveSync account and create a new one.
Read the following Knowledge Base articles for more information:
How do I set up an email account on iPhone using Microsoft Exchange?
Setting Up ActiveSync On Android Devices

BLACKBERRY

For BlackBerry devices, the user will need to wipe the device to remove old policies and then activate the new account using Enterprise activation. We recommend using the BlackBerry desktop manager to backup any vital data on the blackberry. Upon activation, the device will synchronize the contacts and calendar along with recent mail. The device will only synchronize the last 7 days or 350 mail items.
Read the following Knowledge Base articles for more information:
How do I enable my BlackBerry using wireless Enterprise activation?
Troubleshooting BlackBerry activation issues (Exchange 2007/2010)
BlackBerry® 10: ActiveSync Set Up

STEP 14: COPY DIFFERENTIAL MAILBOX DATA. With all mail now delivering directly to your new Hosted Exchange account, Smarsh Hosted Services will perform a final export and import of mailbox data to capture any new data since the initial copy.

STEP 15: MANUAL DATA MOVE OF CONTACTS, CALENDARS AND LOCAL DATA. If you have contacts, calendars or any locally stored data to migrate, data migration of these items can be done manually client-side.
Read the Knowledge Base article on Data migration from POP hosting to Smarsh Hosted Services for more information.

STEP 16: VERIFY MAILBOX DATA. You will need to verify that the data copied correctly.

  1. Verify that the data migration is complete.  Check the mailboxes on the new account to ensure that there is data in them as appropriate.
  2. Note if the migration of data was successful.  If there was data that did not get migrated, gather the details and relay the details to Smarsh Hosted Services.
  3. Notify Smarsh Hosted Services if the data migration is complete.  If there are issues with the migration of data, we will work with you to correct the issue.

STEP 17: VERIFY MIGRATION IS COMPLETE. As a final step to the actual migration process, Smarsh Hosted Services will contact you to verify that all your users are on the new account, your data is all available, and the service is behaving as expected. Once you have verified that you are in production on the new account, the migration will be marked as complete. Please contact Support if you have any further issues.

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