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Advanced Way to Migrate Exchange Server 2016 to Office 365 – Guided Solution

by Aditya29

Several firms have started to Migrate Exchange Server 2016 to Office 365. But they don’t know the exact process.

Nowadays cloud services have immensely increased within a few years. More users and organizations have accepted this as it makes it easier for the users to save data on the cloud.

On the other hand, the Exchange server seems complex setup and it also needs to maintain the server. Many hardware components like Disk, server racks, RAID, Power, backup, cooling facility etc. are used to run the exchange server. And it cost very high when it comes to installing and maintenance.

There are more things that users should know while setting up an exchange server. To avoid all that headache. Organizations are moving towards the cloud-based platform to get rid of the server setup process.

But some of the firms are not able to find the best way to migrate Exchange server 2016 to Office 365.

So, in this article, we will explain the perfect way to execute this process without losing any data.

Types of Migration for Exchange Server – Manual Methods

Now let’s understand each type of migration briefly before choosing the suitable type to Move on-premises Exchange to Office 365.

  • Cutover Migration

It is used as direct migration in which users can directly migrate source exchange mailboxes to the destination email account of Office 365. With the help of this migration process users can move all their mailboxes to Office 365 at once and few days.

Using a cutover migration, the user is allowed to migrate mailboxes up to 2000. But users are recommended to use this process to migrate 150 mailboxes in batch migration.

The cutover migration process is available for exchange server 2003 and later versions. Users should have licenses for all their mailboxes that are migrated to Office 365.

  •  Staged Migration

Staged migration will be a suitable migration process for the on-premises Exchange Server 2003 and 2007. This process follows the same work as the cutover migration. But in Staged migration, it takes the help of a CSV file to add a number of mailboxes to move mailbox from on-premises Exchange to Office 365. In this user does not have to enter the mailbox IDs manually.

  • Hybrid Migration

The Office 365 hybrid migration allows organizations to combine Office 365 with their On-premises Exchange servers. As an outcome, users can sync and manage user account mailboxes in both environments.  Using hybrid migration, users can pick and move selective mailboxes from on-premises to Office 365 with the same password.

It provides a single sign-in option to make it convenient to operate both environments. But it is important to have On-premises Exchange 2010 or 2013 version to Move on-premises Exchange to Office 365. As it is not going to work for 2003 & 2007. As hybrid migration works on version 2010 and later. And to use this migration users need more than 2000 mailboxes.   

  • IMAP Migration

IMAP is different from the other three migration types, all three types of migration depend only on Exchange, while IMAP migration authorizes the users to move their mailboxes from Gmail or another email client which supports IMAP migration.

An IMAP migration retrieves email data from source mailboxes and passes it to office 365. However, IMAP migration only passes the emails. Other data items like calendars, notes, tasks, contacts etc. does not include in this migration.

In an IMAP migration, before initiating the email migration, the admin has to create a mailbox for every user. It has a limit of 50,0000 mailboxes and 5,000,000 items.

As we have discussed the types of migration, now it depends on the users to choose the migration option to migrate Exchange server 2016 to Office 365 or any other exchange server version.

Now let’s move to another technique to execute the above-mentioned process.

Alternative Solution to Move Mailbox From On-Premises Exchange to Office 365

Users can opt for any of the following migration types. However, if the user wants to make their job easier then, they can use the Best-in-Class Exchange to Office 365 Migration Tool which is capable to migrate bulk mailboxes from the exchange server to Office 365.

Initially, install and run the exchange migrator tool. Then, choose “Exchange” and “Office 365” as the source and destination platforms.

In the Workload section, choose the categories to migrate and apply the date filter if needed. Then hit on the Next button.

Group mapping: This feature allows group mapping from source to destination.    

In the source window, the user has to enter the credentials (Exchange server version, admin email and password, Active Directory IP). After entering all the details press Validate button.

Apart from that, the user can tick the “Include Subdomain” in case if a user wants to migrate data from the subdomain of the exchange server.

In the next stage, after validating, permissions will be granted to the source users, then select the Next button.

Next, in the destination window, enter the admin email and application Id, hit on Validate button for permission validation, then press the Next button.

Coming on the “Users” screen, several options are available to add users from the source account that needs to migrate. Like, Fetch User, Import Users, Download Template.

After that, user will see a list of users’ email Id , then press the Validate button to authorize the source and destination resources.

Finally, after the successful validation, select the Start Migration button to initiate the process to Move on-premises Exchange to Office 365.


In this write up, we have explained different types of migration that users can implement to migrate Exchange server 2016 to Office 365 depending on the versions. Moreover, we have explained the expert-recommended tool to perform the same operation without putting in much effort.

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