Microsoft released a new migration tool, as announced during Ignite 2017 last September.
Over the past few years, Microsoft has shown its commitment to helping everyone move to the cloud. For example, the company launched a Migration API in 2015 and a free SharePoint Migration Assessment Tool in 2016.
The new SharePoint & Office 365 Migration Tool is also free. If you need additional migration support, you can get help from Microsoft’s FastTrack team.
A Short Summary
Migrating your files to SharePoint is often a time-consuming process, and this new tool focuses mostly on files. In particular, the tool streamlines the most common types of migration: File Share to Office 365 or OneDrive for Business.
Microsoft’s new tool uses the Migration API to quickly upload files to Office 365 – reducing the amount of time that you must spend on your migration. You can choose file Shares, your on-premises SharePoint 2013, or a CSV file as the source. Then, select a SharePoint Site or OneDrive in Office 365 as your destination.
Keep in mind, the tool doesn’t offer a server installation.
After you begin a migration, the minimalist UI will show your progress. You can view in-depth information on your migration through CSV logs that show you any problems. While still in very early preview, the software is quite capable for one of the most common migration needs: File Share to Office 365 or Onedrive for Business.
The Complete Picture
If you are thinking about migrating, you likely have questions about this new release. For example, which items does the tool support? What are its limitations? Can you perform a bulk migration? Does it come with additional support?
Check out the chart below to see – at a glance – what the Migration Tool can and cannot do. Then, you can set a date for your migration, put the right resources in place, and start to reap the benefits of the cloud.
File Share & SharePoint 2013 to Office 365/OneDrive for Business
SharePoint 2010 & SharePoint 2016 on roadmap
Destination: Site collection administrator
Lists: On roadmap
Preserve authors and timestamps on files: Yes
Metadata: Basic metadata only but more support on roadmap
Content types: currently only native Document CT but more support on roadmap
Structure and settings: No
Users and Groups: No
Welcome Pages: No
Library (or folder) level only
File upload through O365 Migration API
Pause, Resume previously running session, Retry (Incremental)
Migrate to/from specific Subfolders
Bulk Migrations: load a list of src/dest pairs through CSV file
Pre-migration scanning: Yes
Mappings: Users mappings only
Filters: Created / Modified Date, Extension, Hidden files (Y/N), Invalid file names
API / PowerShell: No
Content Export: No
Bulk Edit: No
Destination Library must already exist
One running instance per machine
Note: Because the tool currently only migrates files using the Migration API, there is no throttling by O365. This will change when the tool supports more items.
CSV and text files on disk, no search or filtering on previous sessions. But since they are flat files on disk, you can use Windows Explorer.
As a free tool, none. Support is possible through FastTrack or paid MS Support offerings.
We expect that Microsoft will add new features to the Migration Tool and support more cases in the future.
Microsoft has already stated that it wants to add SharePoint 2010 and 2016 as sources, along with the ability to migrate list items. These features would better support metadata and content types. But since the tool’s primary audience is customers with a straightforward migration to Office 365, do not expect many advances in areas such as content transformation, reporting, or bulk management.
If you have a complex migration or would like guidance, you may benefit from third-party SharePoint migration tool, such as Sharegate.