Migrating Local Mail Server to Google Apps
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BY webmaster
11 years ago
Technical-Solution
0 comments comment
We had a query from one of our customers to help them migrate their local mail server to Google Apps. They wanted to do this because they did not have the sufficient in-house capability nor have the funds to get paid external capability to support an internal mail server. One hurdle that they were facing was that they had around 40GB of mail left on the local mail server that they wanted to migrate to the new mail accounts they created on Google Apps.

One of the problems was that the local IMAP server kept on crashing whenever they tried the bulk import and then there were frequent authentication errors. We took up the project and completed the migration process within a week. The migration took that long because the complete 40GB(not quite because Google rejects huge attachments) had to be uploaded to Google over an unfavorably biased upstream channel.

The local mail server was dovecot and it was a pretty old version of dovecot too - pre 1.0. The IMAP server used to crash erratically during the bulk migration process but we worked around this by running a small script to restart the IMAP server if it went down after checking every minute. One good thing about the migration process with Google was that the bot was very patient and would retry on accounts that fail. So this 1 min interval ensured that the mail in the accounts from which import was happening at the time of crash always reached the Google server once the IMAP came back on.

Another problem was that there were quite a lot of authentication failures. It seemed that the mailserver was restored from a backup after some recent crash and this messed up the users and their uids leaving lot of mboxes orphans without valid users associated. Since the mboxes were named username we simply ran a script to move ownership back to the user with the same name. To add to the mess the local server was already compromised and was running a full scale spam relay service. We did not fix this issue as the server was going to be put to sleep after the migration. We worked around this issue by stopping all the unnecessary processes on the server other than the IMAP server.

Once the initial hiccups were sorted out the migration went smoothly and Google neatly imported the complete set of accounts and their mails from the local server. Google recognized the IMAP folders and labeled the emails accordingly while being imported into Google Apps. Other than the small concern that Google is going to have complete access to all your organizations mails there are no other reason that I could think off that should prevent small educational institutions in moving to Google Apps.

Google Apps offers free services for educational institutions. For commercial establishments a lite edition is free for use but the full and heavier version requires you to pay Google subscription charges. If you are a small user it might be better for you to avail the Free Services from Google and as you grow you can decide between the Free vs Paid services from Google or alternatively start looking at getting support externally initially and the finally hiring internal capability to manage your local servers.

Our Server Support Services and Migration Services

We however are happy to offer to any interested customers our services in remote administration of existing servers, i.e. if you are planning to get external help or if you are finding that paying for internal capability for the same is not entirely worth the money. For those who are looking to migrate to Google Apps, you can avail our services to have a hassle-free migration experience.


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on 04th April 2007 / by webmaster
Linux is the epitome of the FLOSS model. Technical Solution Linux installation Leave a reply Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked * Dewey J. Corl (not verified) access_time 15 Jul 2020 - 14:41 Linux is not ready for the general public! (I am a Ubuntu user). For proof, 1. try to simply print labels on a Dymo label printer. It takes a LOT of work to get to the ease of label printing already available in Windows and Mac. 2. try syncing a modern Palm based PDA. Yes, jpilot and others will sync the main data, but pictures and midi files do not get transferred without a lot of extra setup. These are examples of applications that are not ready for the general public. Since an operating system only supports applications, Linux is not ready to be a common desktop for the general public. While we are waiting for the applications to catch up, keep up the good work!! Anoop John (not verified) access_time 15 Jul 2020 - 14:41 Dewey Yes you may be right. But these are not applications that a common man would use. A common man would use one of these applications - Internet browser, Chat Client, Email Client, Document Writer, Presentation Creator, Spreadsheet Editor, Movie Viewer, Music Player, CD/DVD Writer. Both examples you cited are more specific applications that only a small percentage of the whole population uses. It will take time before those hardware vendors identify the need from their perspective to address the Linux community. Krishnadas (not verified) access_time 15 Jul 2020 - 14:41 Dear Mr Anoop, Thank you very much for the free installation of LINUX done in my PC. I am getting immersed in the LINUX and seeing the versatility. To my surprise, I am able to read one of my old backup CD(wherein lot of my valuable file exist) done in DIRECT CD wizard (a custom cd writing software of Easy Cd creator in WIN98) which could not be read in XP. Installation of old version of easycd creator/direct cd program was not possible in XP. I thought that possible i lost all data. Very pleasant start! Srikanth N. S. (not verified) access_time 15 Jul 2020 - 14:41 Hi Anoop, My friend is thrilled with Ubuntu. One of his grouses with windows was that after OS installation, everything else is to be installed separately which is a real headache. WHereas if u install Linux, everything is installed as a package and he is thrilled to bits! Let linux installation spread in Trivandrum and your service in this direction is highly appreciated. Kepp up the good work Regards. PDA Freak (not verified) access_time 15 Jul 2020 - 14:41 Is it possible to install linux on a packardbell notebook ? Pagination Current page 1 Page 2 Next page Next › Last page Last » Add new comment
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