Google Offers Migration Tool for Microsoft Exchange Data

The Internet giant released a tool to help Microsoft Exchange customers move their e-mail, calendar and contact data to Google Apps, the company's latest assault on Microsoft in a brewing collaboration software war. The tool works with Exchange 2003 and 2007 for both on-premise and hosted versions. By offering a migration tool, Google appears to be courting more Exchange users in an effort to move them to the Google Apps cloud.

Google is ratcheting up its efforts to woo Microsoft customers with what it says is a simple, four-step migration process to its cloud-based suite of applications.

The search giant's Google Apps Migration for Microsoft Exchange, launched Wednesday, is a server-side tool designed to migrate a company's e-mail, calendar and contact data from Microsoft's (NASDAQ: MSFT) popular e-mail server to Google Apps without making the process a time-intensive chore for administrators. In a presentation on Tuesday, Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) showed just four screens an IT administrator must complete to perform a migration, and pointed to businesses that used the tool successfully to leave Exchange.

"It's a complicated effort to move between two enterprise systems," Myles Weber, director of professionals services at Business Process Management software supplier Appian, said in a statement. "Google Apps Migration for Microsoft Exchange allowed us to migrate 10 years of e-mail, calendar and contact data for every current user from Exchange 2003 to Apps with limited resources in a tight time frame."

Google Apps Migration for Microsoft Exchange works with Exchange 2003 and 2007, and both on-premises and hosted Exchange. Google said it's free to Google Apps Premier and Education Edition customers.

The release is the latest effort by Google focused on facilitating migration from competing business productivity suites to Google Apps. Last June, Google released Google Apps Sync for Microsoft Outlook, a plug-in that lets seasoned Outlook users maintain Outlook's interface as a front-end to Google Apps. The Google Apps Sync for Microsoft Outlook tool was met with mixed reviews by IT admins, according to eWeek's Google Watch column.

A month later, Google debuted Google Apps Migration for Lotus Notes.

Google also recently updated its Google Apps Connector for BlackBerry Enterprise Server, which allows mobile IT managers to synchronize BlackBerry apps with Google Apps e-mail, calendar and contacts.

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Google Goes After Microsoft Exchange Server Customers