24 June 2006

Migration from Lotus Notes to Exchange 2003 the swiss Army

I am currently making a migration from Lotus Notes 6.5.5 to Microsoft Exchange 2003. We have about 125 Notes users and a few Notes applications.
I will try to give here the tracks i went trough to migrate correctly.

To start with, i am going to list the big steps i did:
-Upgrade the AD & Forest to native 2003
-Install the first exchange node (cluster).
-Upgrade to Exchange 2003 native mode.
-Install another exchange temporary server, which will host the Microsoft Lotus Notes connector.

-I followed the great Guide from Microsoft to get the exchange connector working with Lotus:
Click here

Again the big steps are:
-Create a dedicated account to the MS connector and a foreign domain on Domino
-setting up the connector (which server, Notes Domain, which users to sync...)
-Install a server tasks on the Domino server (small exec from MS)

The MS Connector only migrate the Mails & calendar info, no archive and no contact!!!

I created an exchange user to test the communication between Exchange & Notes.

Our main problem is to keep the Lotus account, since we are doing a smooth migration. But the mail & co must go to the exchange mailbox when the user is migrated.

To migrate a Notes users, i do:
-Create the Exchange Mailbox
-Set up a permanent forward on the Notes account to firstname.lastname@Exchange
-Turn off the sync of user account in others directory
-I use the MS Wizard to migrate the mails & agenda.
-I rename the Notes account to _exchXX. The Notes users only see the exchange account to send mail to the users. But the users remain members of Notes groups, no acl to do again :)

The users reads mail & agenda on outlook, and can open Lotus to see the mails & agenda before the migration, use lotus applications or work on base documents.

The remaining problems concerns the archives & contacts.

about the contacts:
-We created a special view in notes, which allow to correctly export the Notes contacts to CSV and then import to Outlook. The downside ? It's manual and the groups aren't migrated.

about the archives:
I couldn't find a free issue for the archives. I think we could replace the Notes mailbox by the archive one and launch the MS Wizard, but i didn't try it yet.

We just bought the Quest Migration suite, which can migrate mail,agenda, contact and archives. It's not cheap (11€/users).

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