Email Archive Migration: Challenges, Best Practices and Solutions

August 19, 2019 by Jatheon

Organizations have been archiving email for almost two decades. This means that the vast majority of companies already have some kind of a legacy email archiving system in place. But what happens when a company decides to change the archiving provider or upgrade to a new solution? How can you future-proof (and continue using) your existing archived data?

The Problems with Old Email Archives

Managing older data to cope with updated technologies can be challenging. Some email archiving vendors offer only basic tools to cope with migrating older email archives to new technologies.

When companies need to migrate massive amounts of data, such as when one company merges with another and needs to unify the archives, or when one email archive system is being replaced or upgraded, the process often turns out to be much more difficult than expected.

When companies need to migrate massive amounts of data, the process often turns out to be much more difficult than expected. Click To Tweet

Sometimes email archives are incompatible with new technologies, or the old vendor does not provide support to migrate the old data. This can leave organizations feeling that their data is locked into old technology.

What Is Data Ingestion and How Does It Work?

Data ingestion essentially means collecting data from previous sources and moving it to long-term storage – in this case the email archiving appliance or a cloud-based solution. It’s a process which allows you to import previously processed data into the archive – data being tens of millions of old emails that need to be transferred one hundred percent and without obstacles. This is one of the major challenges in email archiving.

To ensure error-free migration, an email archiving solution needs to be developed in a way that ensures easy migration of high volumes of data from the legacy system into your new system. Legacy data typically consists of PST or EML files which have to be ingested into your archive in order for users to be able to access, search and retrieve them later.

Your email archiving solution needs to ensure an easy migration of high volumes of data. Click To Tweet

How to Handle Different Types of Migrations

In email archiving, there are several types of migration scenarios. There could be a problem with the current email archiving solution in terms of outdated functionalities, clunky user interface and performance issues. Perhaps the product is reaching EOL and the migration is the only solution. Finally, your organization might simply want to end the current contract for whatever reason.

In practice, the way you and the archiving vendor will approach the migration process can depend on whether you’re staying or leaving that specific vendor. Even if you’re staying faithful to your current provider but migrating data from e.g. the hardware solution to the cloud, there are vendors who still charge extra for such migrations.

Why Not Entrust a Third Party with Your Archive Migration

Manually migrating email archives can take months and is a waste of time that most organizations can’t afford. To speed up the process, especially if they’re stuck with an old hardware archive containing an enormous number of emails comprised of old, poor-quality data, organizations often hire third-party companies to handle the migration for them.

The problem with this approach is that such companies have experience with some email platforms and some archiving systems. Each archiving vendor has their own technology that they know best. For this reason, it’s best to leave the migration process to the archiving vendor to which you’re migrating.

Migrating to Jatheon from a Legacy System

At Jatheon, we offer a specially designed turn-key migration program from other email archiving systems. After 15 years of experience in email archiving, we have migrated our customers from almost every major archiving platform.

In Jatheon, for instance, there is a team of software and tech support engineers that specialize in migrations. Upon receiving a migration project, the team first provide the analysis of the legacy data and propose the migration process. Next, they create a detailed migration plan based on the customer’s infrastructure and work together with the customer until the migration is completed.

The only thing the customer needs to do is prepare the legacy data (as PST or EML) and place it on a network drive so that the Jatheon solution can mount the drive and start importing email. If necessary, Jatheon can assist during the export process and extract PSTs for specified date ranges. Jatheon products are compatible with all major platforms, which ensures a smooth and a 100% error-proof migration process.

How Quickly Can We Migrate Your Legacy Data?

To be honest, it’s difficult to tell. The process itself is easy – the ingestion is started at a single click. The actual ingestion time depends on various factors such as the number of emails, size and type of attachments, as well as the number of duplicates. An average Jatheon client has approximately 30 million messages, and it typically takes between one and two weeks to migrate that amount of legacy data into Jatheon.

By migrating your legacy data, you will not only unlock old email archives you previously thought lost, but also centralize your email archiving efforts, ensure full compliance by having all email secure and searchable in one place and avoid all the risks and resource usage associated with manual archive migration.

If you’d like to learn more about how to migrate your current archive to Jatheon, contact us or schedule your personal demo.

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