OIT Upgrades Central E-mail System, Begins Phased Account Migration

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The much anticipated hardware and software upgrade of Ohio State's central webmail/e-mail system is complete and OIT has begun a phased migration for all central "@osu.edu" accounts. The new system is designed to be more robust, have improved functionality, and it includes a redesigned webmail interface.

This upgrade and migration is not associated with the earlier announcement that student e-mail services may be outsourced this fall.

Starting March 3, OIT will begin a phased approach for migrating all central e-mail accounts to the new system and will steadily increase the number of daily migrations to approximately 4,000 @osu.edu mailboxes each day. At conclusion, OIT will migrate more than 75,000 active accounts during the month-long migration period. OIT will not migrate accounts throughout finals week, to mitigate any risk during this critical time.

The e-mail migration schedule includes:

  • Staff migration will start March 3
  • STOP FOR FINALS WEEK
  • Faculty migration will occur March 19 after grades have been posted
  • Student migration will start March 20 once the grade roster has been completed
  • Other affiliated groups – alumni, consultants, others will occur the end of March

This migration strategy is designed to be transparent, having minimal impact on users. No significant system downtime is expected during the March migration window. One impact that users will experience throughout this period is that all OSU Webmail users will be required to enter their lastname.# into a “Migration Assistant Webpage.” This page will direct users to the correct web server to access e-mail while the migration process is underway.

Another change is that OSU Webmail will have a different look. The OSU Webmail login page will remain the same, but the actual webmail pages will be different from the current system, with additional functionality.

People only using OSU POP and IMAP to check mail, e.g., Eudora Pro, Outlook or Thunderbird, will not see the Migration Assistant Webpage. These users will not experience a different mail interface or functionality. For those users, this upgrade will be transparent. They will, however, be notified by OIT that they are being migrated to the new e-mail server prior to their migration date.

Individual account migration, occurring in batches, is anticipated to take about 15 minutes, depending upon the amount of the data stored in the mailbox. When e-mail is in route during the migration of individual accounts, the e-mail will be queued and delivered after their mailbox migration has been completed.

To check your individual migration status, go to acctmgt.service.ohio-state.edu and select the osu.edu E-mail tab, then select View account settings. For additional information about the new webmail/e-mail system and the status of the migration process and your individual migration situation, go to 8help.osu.edu/migration.

Activating e-mail forwarding available from the OSU Account Management site can improve service delivery during the migration timeframe. Select the Change delivery tab. Forwarding activation must be completed before your account is migrated. You will also be able to use this website to change the mail delivery back after you have been migrated to the new system.

Migration is one of the most complex elements of any deployment project. Data integrity is critical and OIT is taking steps to ensure that all mail accounts, stored messages, and associated personal information and preferences (for example, address books, passwords, and custom settings) are accurately retained in the new e-mail system. Our goal is for this migration to be as transparent as possible.

Finally, quotas for storing e-mail on the central server will not change. Quotas are set at 30MB (megabytes) for full-time faculty and staff and 15MB for everyone else. E-mail quota includes the space taken by messages in your Inbox and Trash folders, as well as any messages in IMAP folders that have been created. Users can check their quota usage in webmail.

If you have questions, contact 8help by sending e-mail to 8help@osu.edu, visit 8help.osu.edu/migration, or call 688-HELP.

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