T-Systems Carries Out 300 TB Migration to Microsoft® SharePoint® 2010 and SharePoint Online with DocAve®

Critical Needs

  • Full-fidelity migration to SharePoint 2010 from multiple legacy systems
  • Staged migration to SharePoint Online
  • Seamless content management within a SharePoint Online environment
  • Customer Location Munich, Germany
  • Industry Technology
  • Platform SharePoint 2010, SharePoint Online
  • AvePoint Solutions Migrator Cloud

Success Highlights

  • Migrated 50 terabytes (TB) of data and stayed on schedule to finish 300 TB migration by 2013
  • Migrated data from previous versions of SharePoint and other legacy systems with full fidelity – including all metadata, security settings, and version histories
  • Reduced number of connection paths required to migrate to SharePoint Online by performing a staged migration
  • Planned migration with help from AvePoint Partner Services (APPS) team, accessing knowledge and experience from the world’s largest SharePoint-exclusive research and development team
Working with AvePoint’s technical support team has been one of the best product support experiences I’ve ever had.
Parthasarathy Thandavarayan Migration Architect, T-Systems

The Challenge

T-Systems was engaged by a global company to carry out a major SharePoint migration in 2010. The customer had been previously utilizing Microsoft Office SharePoint Server (MOSS) 2007 in order to facilitate collaboration for its various project teams and external partners. With a new version of SharePoint available, SharePoint 2010, company executives felt it was an optimal time to not only migrate its existing SharePoint environment to SharePoint 2010, but also to migrate content from its other legacy sources to the platform. This included OpenText LiveLink, Microsoft Exchange Server Public Folders, and file shares. “The customer wanted a single place to store intellectual property,” said Christoph Bernhardt, Head of Project Center ECM Enterprise and Public Solutions at T-Systems. “In addition to finding content easier by implementing FAST Search Server 2010 for SharePoint, the company could lower storage costs by using SharePoint’s content lifecycle management functionality for more of its data.”

The migration was no small undertaking. With 150,000 end-users, the customer had approximately 300 TB of data to migrate. With so much content being migrated into the new system and SharePoint’s important role in the organization, it was vital that the customer’s data retain its full fidelity on the new platform. SharePoint’s native migration abilities, however, did not ensure this would happen. “When you move to a new system, its functionalities are beneficial, but you do not want to lose the history of your data,” said Parthasarathy Thandavarayan, Migration Architect at T-Systems. “That history is very important.”

In addition to SharePoint 2010, the customer also wanted to implement Microsoft Office 365 and SharePoint Online. “Utilizing Microsoft’s cloud services, the company aimed to standardize its environment,” Bernhardt said. “Office 365 would enable the customer to drive down total cost of ownership for its technology investments.” Moving the customer onto a hybrid SharePoint deployment, with the platform hosted both on-premise and in the cloud, T-Systems required a tool to assist its efforts with both migrating to Office 365 and effectively managing the content that resided in the cloud.

With full-fidelity migration of an extremely large amount of data from multiple legacy systems and content management in the cloud both necessary, T-Systems began a search for a top caliber SharePoint solution to meet its needs.

The AvePoint Solution

T-Systems compared several solutions and ultimately chose to implement the DocAve Software Platform by AvePoint, the world’s largest provider of enterprise-class governance and infrastructure management solutions for SharePoint since the platform’s inception in 2001. The DocAve Software Platform integrates more than 30 independently deployable modules which function within a unified, browser-based interface and fully distributed architecture, but can also be purchased and deployed independently. “For such a large migration job, we required a toolset with a proven record,” Bernhardt said. “We felt AvePoint had the biggest footprint in the marketplace and would best support us in the long run.”

T-Systems implemented DocAve Migrator, which enables organizations to move off of legacy systems and onto SharePoint 2010. In addition to its ability to enable full-fidelity content migration and migrate from all of the company’s legacy platforms, T-Systems also benefitted from DocAve’s mapping and reporting functions. “The ability to map elements of a migration from their source to their destination is a major need for any SharePoint 2010 migration,” Thandavarayan said. “DocAve’s SQL logs have also helped us report on our progress throughout the job both for the customer and our own internal records.”

For the customer’s cloud environment, T-Systems made use of DocAve for SharePoint Online. DocAve provides organizations with the most comprehensive solution for migrating enterprise content to SharePoint Online and managing hybrid SharePoint deployments. “We’re carrying out a staged migration to the cloud in order to reduce the number of connection paths required,” Bernhardt said. “DocAve allowed us to migrate content from the source environment to the staging environment, and then directly to the cloud production environment.”

To migrate to Office 365, T-Systems also needed to send the customer’s content databases to Microsoft. During this period of time, it was required that the databases be set to “read only” mode. When the databases were provisioned for Office 365 and taken out of “read only” mode, T-Systems needed to move newly created content to the database swiftly and with full fidelity. “With DocAve, we could move any content the user created during the time the content database was in ‘read only’ mode seamlessly to SharePoint Online,” Thandavarayan said.

During the planning phase of the migration, T-Systems worked closely with AvePoint Partner Services (APPS) team. APPS enables partners and customers to utilize AvePoint’s vast developer resources – the world’s largest SharePoint-exclusive group of its kind – to deliver custom-built solutions, services, and applications that meet organizations’ specific business objectives. “The APPS team’s knowledge of the migration project and its challenges was a valuable tool for us,” Bernhardt said. “They helped us set up process, and even participated in meetings with the customer to help present the migration service during its conceptual phase. We received all of the special product features we needed for the project from the APPS team, and support was outstanding.”

Whenever challenges arose throughout the migration process, T-Systems relied upon AvePoint’s technical support team. “Working with AvePoint’s technical support team has been one of the best product support experiences I’ve ever had,” Thandavarayan said. “The team is very good at resolving issues and properly classifying support requests.”

The Bottom Line

Faced with the need to migrate a large amount of data from legacy systems to both SharePoint 2010 and SharePoint Online, T-Systems required a proven toolset. Through AvePoint, T-Systems found not only the software solution, but also the experience, longevity, and enterprise-class service required to carry out such a large-scale, business-critical project for its customer. The powerful combination of DocAve solutions with support from APPS and AvePoint’s technical support team helped T-Systems properly plan and begin to execute the SharePoint migration according to schedule.

About T-Systems

T-Systems is Deutsche Telekom’s corporate customer arm. Using a global infrastructure of data centers and networks, T-Systems operates information and communication technology (ICT) systems for multinational corporations and public sector institutions. With offices in more than 20 countries and global delivery capabilities, T-Systems serves companies in all industries – from the automotive industry to telecommunications, the financial sector, retail, services, media, energy, and the manufacturing industry all the way to government agencies and the healthcare sector. Approximately 47,600 employees worldwide use their industry expertise and ICT know-how to provide top-quality service.