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Mail Migrations with Movebot

Learn about Mail, Calendar and Contact migrations in Movebot


Movebot takes an unusual approach to mail migrations, using the same mechanics of Storage Migrations for mail, calendar, and contacts. Because of this, we recommend that you read through Data Migrations with Movebot as a precursor to reading this.

Supported Systems

Movebot currently has support for:

  • Email from individual users and shared mailboxes

  • Private and shared calendars

  • Contacts

  • Tasks (Coming Soon)

In the following platforms:

Key Concepts in Movebot for Mailboxes

When configuring a mailbox migration in Movebot, there are a couple of key concepts that we have adopted to help make the process simple. It's useful to quickly skim through them to understand how we approach mailbox transfers differently.

Mailboxes are Built on Movebot

Using Movebot to perform email, calendar, and contact migrations uses the same process as with Data Migrations with Movebot.

Migrate Mail the Same Way as Files and Folders

Movebot extracts email, calendars, and contacts so that they behave like files and folders. This approach is a bit unusual, but has some key benefits. One benefit is that mailbox migrations support delta migrations natively, another is that mailboxes can be transferred to normal file storage, allowing you to back up mail with Movebot.

A major advantage to our approach is that Mailboxes can be cherry-picked. Because Movebot works with your mailbox as if it's a filesystem, you can pick and choose what content you move and use Movebot to reorganize and ignore certain folders inside mailboxes. This means you can include/exclude based on a filter or move mail between labels, users, and inboxes.

Delta Migrations

Deltas move new emails automatically, without a hard cutover

The delta functionality in Movebot is an overlooked gem. Most migration tools require a hard cutover, but with Movebot, the cutover process can be managed by the admin in a way that best suits them.

In Movebot, delta migrations iteratively migrate changes that have occurred since the first transfer using the modification time and some other smarts by looking at a scan of both the source and the destination.

During a delta migration, Movebot will only transfer emails that have either been updated or newly created in the source.

Deltas can be ran as many times as needed, including months after the project was initially set up.

Quick Start Guide

Because transferring or migrating mailbox data uses the same process as files, simply follow the existing guide for Data Migrations with Movebot.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I manage cutover?

With Movebot, cutover is simplified by delta migrations. Migrations and transfers can be run continuously until the customer has stopped using the data in the source.

Do I need a separate migration project for mail?

Yes. Mail, calendar, and contact migrations require a separate project to data migrations because they require a different level of access.

How does billing for mailboxes work?

Mail migrations are billed exactly the same as data migrations: per TB of data transferred.

Do emails retain their read/unread status?

All emails will show as "read" in the destination.

Should I separate my mail migration from my calendar migration?

You can migrate mail and calendars together, but your migration will go faster if you separate them into their own projects.

What's the speed like?

The scan stage can take a while to scan many small files. Once the scan is done the mail migration can progress very quickly, at a rate of 200-300 emails per minute. With approximately 50 users, each having under 10 GB of emails, the migration is estimated to take around 7 days.

What will happen to my meeting room, shared mailbox, etc?

These will be treated as normal mailboxes.

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