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Cloud Services Thread, Google Apps migration in Technical; As our Exchange 2007 server grows older, and our user drives are running out of space - I am thinking ...
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    BassTech's Avatar
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    Google Apps migration

    As our Exchange 2007 server grows older, and our user drives are running out of space - I am thinking of migrating all users to Google Mail & Google Drive, but still using outlook as a front-end for email.

    I've been experimenting/dipping my toe in the water and it almost seems too good to be true - all the space, all the services, for free! Basically, are there any things that I should look out for?
    Is it really as easy as Google say it is to switch?
    If you've done it, how did the users react? Any features from Exchange that were noticeably missed?
    Is it better than Microsoft office 365? The thing I like with Google is that you get everything together - all your eggs in one basket if you will.

    Thanks

    Lee

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    We did it and ditched outlook. Never looked back!.

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    How did staff find it? Did they pick it up easily, did you provide any training?
    My main concern is the staff here don't take to change too well, especially ICT systems.. So I want to ensure it will go as smooth as possible!

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    You lose most of the benefits of Google apps if you still use outlook.

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    BassTech's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nicholab View Post
    You lose most of the benefits of Google apps if you still use outlook.
    Ah ok, I'm willing to ditch outlook if that is the case!
    What about SSO - Do your users have to login to windows, then their mail separately? I can't see that going down well!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lee91 View Post
    How did staff find it? Did they pick it up easily, did you provide any training?
    My main concern is the staff here don't take to change too well, especially ICT systems.. So I want to ensure it will go as smooth as possible!
    They picked up the mail pretty quickly. We offered a bunch of training time and utilized the training video resources provided by Google.
    Some still go stuck on things like filters, but that's no different than exchange.
    Drive was a little harder concept, but most of them now see that it is easier to find work in google drive than on mapped networked drives.

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    We use this for single sign on: SAML 2.0 and SAML 1.1 SSO Products - SSO Easy
    but there are a bunch of other ways to do it,.

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    BassTech's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CyberNerd View Post
    They picked up the mail pretty quickly. We offered a bunch of training time and utilized the training video resources provided by Google.
    Some still go stuck on things like filters, but that's no different than exchange.
    Drive was a little harder concept, but most of them now see that it is easier to find work in google drive than on mapped networked drives.
    Nice, they do have a good selection of videos on there so that will defiantly help us with regards to training.
    Drive looks very interesting, with 25gb space per user!

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    plexer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lee91 View Post
    The thing I like with Google is that you get everything together - all your eggs in one basket if you will.
    Not quite sure what you mean by that?

    Ben

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    Quote Originally Posted by plexer View Post
    Not quite sure what you mean by that?

    Ben

    check out the integration options for education.

    https://www.google.com/enterprise/marketplace/?pli=1

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    Rolled it out a couple of years back; ran a trial for some staff from Easter to summer break, then migrated everyone over during the summer break. Minimum training, couple of questions popped up more than once ('how do I mark an email as important?' and 'how do I sort by sender?') but easy as anything. Ditched Outlook except in a couple of cases (finance system needs MAPI connection so use Google Sync for Outlook to connect to a 'finance' email). Didn't go down SSO as didn't want logins to be reliant on our internet connection; really need to use Google Password Sync to change Google passwords when domain one does, but haven't tested/deployed yet. Device Management and Two Factor Authentication available and implemented for key users, using Drive to share markbooks, school policies etc. from central point so no regrets here!

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    BassTech's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by plexer View Post
    Not quite sure what you mean by that?

    Ben
    I meant, if we go with Google we would go with all of their services - Mail, Drive, Calendar etc so most of our 'services' would be in one place.

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    How do you intend to do backups

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lee91 View Post
    I meant, if we go with Google we would go with all of their services - Mail, Drive, Calendar etc so most of our 'services' would be in one place.
    All of which are also provided by O365?

    Ben

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    We moved over recently, again from an aging exchange 2007 server. Once everything is set up it's pretty much fit and forget (Password sync and directory sync) I do directory syncs manually thought as there's never really many changes through the year.
    No outlook here either except for a few departments (admin, and finance) that won't change the way they do things (mail merge etc.) There were a few whiners when I launched it, I got a lot of flak from some users but they seem to have settled down now (well the whining has gone at least). They love the calendars and are really starting to see the benefits of Drive.
    Only things I wish that the admin panel could do was actually admin, at the moment it's just a way to manage users and apps. I would like the panel (in the interests of safeguarding) to have the ability to browse student drives and mailboxes when SLT request it - we've had a few instances of bullying by email that I couldn't really do anything about.
    It's pretty easy to switch once you get your head around directory sync and get that set up correctly, I set up our domain and just played around before I went live. Google documentation and technical support are really good too.

    Other wishes I'd like, google drive integration, make users home folders their google drive for instance.

    Edit, I tried O365 in the early days and just didn't like it as much, maybe that's changed - too late now.
    Last edited by caffrey; 24th October 2013 at 07:52 AM.



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