Lantronix_1
1 Copper

Decomissioning EmailXtender

Hello,

We have EmailXtender 4.81.564 with Centera as backend storage and single Exchange 2003 SP2 as source mailbox server. We're trying to determine what is the most cost effective option to move away from this product. Looks like we have no choice but spending $30K+(Just for migrating) to migrate old email archive to either SourceOne or any other Email archive systems (Symantec EV and etc...). Unfortunately our management doesn't want to spend a penny on migration and start fresh with new archiving software (non-EMC). They don't mind losing last 7 years of email journal and good portion of user emails. I'm doing my best to justify why we shouldn't be pursuing that option. At this point, they are willing to take the risk of not having last 7 years of historical emails and ready to make an announcement to all user communities that some user will lose some emails as consequence. Before we do this I'd like to make sure a few things. My questions are;

  • I have good understanding of how journal works but unable to identify which mail boxes are being archived by how. Is there a place where I can find a list of archived mailboxes and related archiving policies?
  • Is there a way to re-import user mailbox archive back to the Exchange mailbox to eliminate the shortcuts?
  • EmailXtender is being the biggest hurdle for upgrading it to the newer technologies such as Exchange 2010/2013... Is it possible to co-exist with 2010/2013?
  • What if we uninstall EmailXtender completely (without migrating email archive), what will happened to all existing short-cuts? Will we encounter an issue when we try to migrate mailbox to the new Exchange server (2010/2013)?
  • Is there anything else that we should be aware of(technical perspective) after uninstalling EmailXtender?


Thank you in advance for all your help!

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5 Replies
Gary_Reardon
3 Argentium

Re: Decomissioning EmailXtender

Are you just journaling everything or have done a combination of Journaling and Historic?

You can run an Analysis Task in EmailXtender to get an idea what you have.

There are also SQL Queries that could be run to determine what's there.

Yes, you can run a job to restore existing shortcuts or search and either restore mail by users or export it to PST.

Shortcuts will just not be retrievable, no issue otherwise.

If you plan on recovering the Centera space there is a whole procedure that is required and usually done as part of the Migration.

My big question is, if they don't mind losing the existing email why are you archiving at all?

You don't necessarily have to lose ALL of your existing mail to move to a new solution.

You can dispose of some of it based on a determined retention period and migrate the remainder.

If you don't have a defined retention policy then that should be your first step.

You can migrate EmailXtender data to SourceOne without a migration product, it's just a huge amount of manual work.

The bottom line is the Migration Tool saves you tons of manual labor.

What is your time worth?

How much data do you have in EmailXtender and how much do you want to migrate?

We can have a private discussion about all the options available to you.

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Lantronix_1
1 Copper

Re: Decomissioning EmailXtender

Hi Gary,

Thanks for your response.

We're definately doing both but not sure where to check what options are enabled. I can see we have specific journaling account in exchange server and some mailbox databases to archive all messages sent or received.

I've seen some users had vault icon 'shortcut' on their Outlook so I know mailbox archive were enabled for sure but not sure how many users we have.

You can run an Analysis Task in EmailXtender to get an idea what you have.There are also SQL Queries that could be run to determine what's there.

Can you please elaborate with more details?

Yes, you can run a job to restore existing shortcuts or search and either restore mail by users or export it to PST.

That's great! Is this something I can do from management GUI?

Shortcuts will just not be retrievable, no issue otherwise.

Perfect, Thank you!

If you plan on recovering the Centera space there is a whole procedure that is required and usually done as part of the Migration.

We're also trying to stay away from Centera but hosting archived data in the SAN (or much inexpensive storage)

My big question is, if they don't mind losing the existing email why are you archiving at all?

You don't necessarily have to lose ALL of your existing mail to move to a new solution.

You can dispose of some of it based on a determined retention period and migrate the remainder.

If you don't have a defined retention policy then that should be your first step.

This system was implemented 5-6 years ago. No one knows why we have this system. We’re archiving email because it’s there.

Personally I don’t want to lose any of them but move/keep them with the new system.

You can migrate EmailXtender data to SourceOne without a migration product, it's just a huge amount of manual work. The bottom line is the Migration Tool saves you tons of manual labor. What is your time worth?

I understand there’s no easy way to migrate archive to SourceOne. However I wasn’t aware of that it can be done without using a migration product. Can you please elaborate with more details?

I’m not against using professional services to perform migration. The problem is that our management doesn’t agree with me and they’re OK with losing all historical emails (Journal archive & some user emails).

Gary_Reardon
3 Argentium

Re: Decomissioning EmailXtender

Do you have a Legal Requirement or an Internal Policy to keep any specific mail?

Do you have a written Email Policy?

The primary reasons archiving is used are:

Long-Term Retention to confirm with a Legal Requirement or Internal Policy

Retention for E-Discovery use during Litigation and the ability to put specific emails on "Legal Hold" to prevent them from being deleted when related to litigation.

Controlling the size of a user's mailbox by shortcutting or "stubbing" older attachments so that don't consume expensive storage.

You should have the EmailXtender Product documentation on the server somewhere depending on who did the install and it's also available on powerlink.emc.com.

Going through the Product Manual will get you more familiar with its operation and capabilities so you can get a grasp on how it's configured in your environment.

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KatwalR
3 Zinc

Re: Decomissioning EmailXtender

Greetings,

Here are some of the things I could think of:

1. If you have valid EX support contract you can work with your account manager to have those converted to SourceOne licenses.

2. If you do not want to spend money on migrating data from EX to SourceOne then you can still have EX in the read only mode to co-exist with SourceOne. SourceOne allows data being read from EX for searches and shortcut retrieval. Point to be noted is that EX is in its extended support period.

3. EMC has introduced new product called In Place Migration (IPM). This allows data to be moved from EX to SourceOne eventually allowing EX to be de-commissioned. This will save on the licensing fee you paid for DiskXtender. EMC Certified partners and EMC consulting team can help you with the quotes. You would not have to worry about shortcuts as those will continue to resolve.

4. If you do not want to use IPM there is a time consuming part in built into SourceOne which allows you to search emails from one archive system (EX in your case) and copy emails to other archive (SourceOne based). For IPM to work you still need to have SourceOne and EX to coexist to start with. Once migration completes then you can turn off EX server.

5. SourceOne Supported Exchange 2010 from quite some time. Offline Access client supported Outlook 2003, Outlook 2007, Outlook 2010 (32bit and 64bit). This was a separate product to be bought with EX and now included in SourceOne. This allows users to have shortcuts cached on their machines and can be controlled by group policies.

6. If you already moved to Exchange 2010, you can leverage SourceOne to restore shortcuts to users mailboxes even though those were shortcutted by EX.

7. SourceOne support vast variety of storage systems as the destination archive location.

8. No new email archiving system are going to come for free (at least to my understanding) unless they are bundled with something else.

Now coming to exact answers to your queries:

  • I have good understanding of how journal works but unable to identify which mail boxes are being archived by how. Is there a place where I can find a list of archived mailboxes and related archiving policies?

On EmailXtender there is an program called EmailXtract, that you can run for analysis or you can run simulated shortcut restore option to see what it is going to do when you run against all users. It does not support Exchange 2010 as I mentioned above that part will be through SourceOne.

  • Is there a way to re-import user mailbox archive back to the Exchange mailbox to eliminate the shortcuts?

As I mentioned above.

  • EmailXtender is being the biggest hurdle for upgrading it to the newer technologies such as Exchange 2010/2013... Is it possible to co-exist with 2010/2013?

SourceOne is compatible with Exchange 2003, 2007, 2010, 365 at the moment. Exchange 2013 support has not been GA.

  • What if we uninstall EmailXtender completely (without migrating email archive), what will happened to all existing short-cuts? Will we encounter an issue when we try to migrate mailbox to the new Exchange server (2010/2013)?

Emails with shortcuts would not resolve. I am aware of some customers who went from one Exchange version to 2010 with having mailboxes shortcutted. I personally do not they had any issues. Some of the customers in fact shortcutted as much data as they can before moving mailbox to 2010 because that way mailbox size was quite small. You can always test with some test mailboxes and see how those go and then plan accordingly.

  • Is there anything else that we should be aware of(technical perspective) after uninstalling EmailXtender?

If you have legal department find out if your company needs to maintain archived email for certain amount of time. I am unsure which country you belong to but US being the most strict in terms of emails retention. It costs a lot if you were meant to have an email and that is missing. I am not an expert in that area but from my experience different companies, their location, laws applicable in their field of work will be the deciding factor if not the options for users to be able to search deleted emails and space claimed back on Exchange after shortcutting emails.

NOTE: I am not from any kind of sales team so I would not know any $ figures involved. All I shared is what I have seen or learnt from experience.

Best regards,

Rajan

KatwalR
3 Zinc

Re: Decomissioning EmailXtender

Please read “This will save on the licensing fee you paid for DiskXtender.” AS “This will save on the licensing fee you are paying for DiskXtender.” in the update above.

Thanks,

Rajan