Top 10 reason why you should use a Hybrid Migration over a Staged migration (Exchange Online)

I published this lists few years ago. But I think is still very relevant, that is why I decided to review it and put it on the top again. This is by far my preferred migration method.

  1. Secure mail routing between on-premises and Exchange Online organizations. Require TLS authentication
  2. A unified global address list (GAL), also called a “shared address book.”
  3. Free/busy and calendar sharing will continue working between on-premises and Exchange Online.
  4. Centralized control of inbound and outbound mail flow. Costumer can configure all inbound and outbound Exchange Online messages to be routed through the on-premises Exchange organization.
  5. A single Microsoft Office Outlook Web App URL for both the on-premises and Exchange Online organizations. User will continue visiting OWA and they will get redirected from there to the cloud if needed.
  6. The ability to move existing on-premises mailboxes to the Exchange Online organization without interrupting the end-user.
  7. Exchange Online mailboxes can also be moved back to the on-premises organization if needed.
  8. Centralized mailbox management (Cloud and on-premises mailboxes) using the on-premises Exchange admin center (EAC).
  9. Message tracking, MailTips, and multi-mailbox search between on-premises and Exchange Online organizations will continue working
  10. No need to reconfigure the end-users’ profile. User will keep rules, signature and .n2k files in their outlook.

Exchange Online Backup, permanently deleted items policy

Our customer are always asking us about the best options to backup Exchange Online. Sometimes, there is even a confusing between litigation-hold, archive, journaling, and backup. Let keep in mind that these services are different and should be implemented based on the specific needs. In this post, we will only focus on back up. Basically, what happen after a user completely remove an item (mail, contact, calendar, and tasks) from their mailbox or Outlook and they need restore that item back to the mailbox. The good think is that with the new Exchange 2016 Exchange CU6 now you can restore items to the original folder as mentioned in one of my previous post (June 2017). Natively, Exchange is set for 14 day retention for deleted items. However, you can extend the retention and administrative recovery to 30 days. If you want to support recovering message beyond 30 days, you would need to use a 3rd party service for the backup.

Here are the examples on how to change how long permanently deleted items are kept. (Only available in PowerShell)

Example 1: Set Emily Maier’s mailbox to keep deleted items for 30 days. In Exchange Management Shell, run the following command.

Set-Mailbox -Identity "Emily Maier" -RetainDeletedItemsFor 30

Example 2: Set all user mailboxes in the organization to keep deleted items for 30 days. In Exchange Management Shell, run the following command.

Get-Mailbox -ResultSize unlimited -Filter {(RecipientTypeDetails -eq 'UserMailbox')} | Set-Mailbox -RetainDeletedItemsFor 30

For more information about this blog, please contact our experts at or submit your question via twitter to @SkyBridgeUS.. We will be happy to assist you or provide any help.

Third-Party Exchange Online Migration Tools

Over the last 5 years we have migrated thousands of mailboxes from on premise systems to Microsoft Office 365 – Exchange Online. During those years, we have been able to identify many tools from third parties that facilitate and automate the migration processes. They use distinctive protocols and approaches to conduct email migrations from email platforms like Exchange, IBM Lotus Notes, Zimbra and Novell GroupWise.

Here are some of our favorite third-party migration tools that can assist with Exchange migrations from either Exchange or other third-party platforms:

  • Binary Tree: Provider of cross-platform messaging migration and coexistence software, with products that provide for the analysis of and the coexistence and migration between on-premises and online enterprise messaging and collaboration environments based on IBM Lotus Notes and Domino and Exchange and SharePoint.
  • BitTitan: Provider of migration solutions to Office 365. This is one of our preferred tool and is very cost efficient. Supports multiple platforms and it also has a new tool support outlook reconfiguration (DeploymentPro).
  • Dell: Provider of on-premises and hosted migration and coexistence software, including pre-migration analysis and complete user and application coexistence. Also known as Quest Migration Tools. Full-featured migrations from on-premises Exchange, IBM Domino, Novell GroupWise, Zimbra, and other environments to Office 365, and SharePoint Online. The main drawback of these tool are the cost. Not recommended from the SMB market.
  • Metalogix: Provider of migration solutions to Office 365 and SharePoint Online.
  • SkyKick: Provider of automated migration solutions to move on-premises Exchange, Gmail, POP3, IMAP, Lotus Notes to Office 365. The end-to-end migration tools help partners with the sales, planning, migration, management, and onsite phases of the migration project.
  • TransVault: Provider of migration solutions to Office 365.

For more information about the migration tools and process, please contact our experts at We will be happy to assist you or provide any help or submit your question  via twitter to @SkyBridgeUS.