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    OneDrive tenant-to-tenant migration

    #microsoft 365, #onedrive, #Office 365, #migration

    OneDrive tenant-to-tenant migration refers to the process of transferring files and data from one Office 365 or Microsoft 365 tenant to another in the context of OneDrive for Business.

    This article is part of a series. Check out our full Microsoft 365 tenant-to-tenant migration Guide


    OneDrive is a simple-to-use online cloud storage platform from Microsoft built for small businesses, enterprises, and everything in between. It is a recommended storage solution for saving your personal work files. OneDrive for Business storage is provisioned on a per-user basis and is designed to serve the needs of individual users. With OneDrive for Business, every person can easily store, access, and share their work files in their personal online storage space in the cloud.

    OneDrive tenant-to-tenant migration can become a significant challenge if a company plans to combine tenants after a merger or an acquisition. OneDrive is a part of Microsoft 365, which allows you to share and collaborate on work documents with co-workers, so it is essential to perform the file migration with minimal downtime for your employees.


    Before you start with a OneDrive tenant-to-tenant migration, there are several prerequisites that need to be met to ensure a successful migration. Here are some of the key prerequisites:

    1. Both the source and target Microsoft 365 tenants must be set up and active before starting the migration process.
    2. The migration account must have the necessary permissions to access and migrate OneDrive data in both the source and target tenants. This includes administrative permissions, access to the SharePoint admin center, and access to the migration tools.
    3. A stable and reliable network connection is required to move data between the source and target environments. This may involve setting up a virtual private network (VPN) or ensuring that there are no firewalls or network restrictions that may prevent data transfer.
    4. The target tenant must have the necessary licenses to support the OneDrive migration: Microsoft 365 licenses for all users and any additional licenses required for third-party migration tools.
    5. The appropriate data migration tool(s) should be selected based on the specific needs of the organization, such as the SharePoint Migration Tool or third-party migration tools.
    6. The migration plan must include a detailed data mapping process that identifies the location and ownership of each OneDrive file and folder to be migrated.
    7. Clear communication with end-users is crucial to guarantee that they are aware of the migration process and any potential impact on their OneDrive data. This may include providing training materials or scheduling downtime to minimize disruption.

    Migration process

    OneDrive tenant-to-tenant migration is the process of moving OneDrive data from one Microsoft 365 tenant to another. Before the migration starts, it is essential to review the current OneDrive environment and identify any potential issues that may arise during the migration process. Here are the steps to follow for a successful OneDrive tenant-to-tenant migration:

    Step 1. Plan the migration

    • Define the scope of the migration and create a plan that outlines the migration approach, timeline, and resources required.
    • Identify the users and data that will be migrated.
    • Choose the migration method, and the data mapping process.

    Step 2. Prepare the target environment for migration

    • Create user accounts.
    • Set up permissions and policies.
    • Configure OneDrive settings.

    Step 3. Prepare the source environment for migration

    • Ensure that all data is backed up.
    • Identify any customizations that need to be migrated.
    • Disable user access to OneDrive during the migration process.

    Step 4. Perform the data migration

    • Review the required permissions and prerequisites.
    • Choose the appropriate migration method and tool, including using the SharePoint Migration Tool, PowerShell scripts, or third-party migration tools.
    • Migrate data from the source OneDrive tenant to the target tenant.

    Step 5. Post-migration tasks

    • Verify the migration.
      After the migration is complete, it is important to verify that all data has been migrated successfully and that users have access to their OneDrive data in the target environment.

    • Communicate with users. It is important to communicate with users throughout the migration process to keep them informed of any changes or downtime that may occur.

    • Clean up the source environment. Once the migration is complete and verified, the source environment can be cleaned up by deleting any unnecessary data and disabling user accounts.

    Overall, OneDrive tenant-to-tenant migration requires careful planning and execution to ensure that data is migrated successfully, and users have uninterrupted access to their data throughout the process.

    Challenges and common issues

    OneDrive tenant-to-tenant migration can present several challenges and common issues that organizations should be aware of. Here are some of the most common challenges and issues that can arise during the OneDrive tenant-to-tenant migration process:

    Network and Infrastructure Considerations. Network and bandwidth limitations can cause migration to take longer than expected or even fail to complete because of the substantial amount of data to be migrated.

    Data Consistency and Transfer Speed. OneDrive migration requires careful data mapping and transfer, which can be a complex and time-consuming process. There may be issues with data loss, duplication, or incorrect permissions during the transfer.

    Third-Party Integrations. Customizations and third-party apps in the source environment may not be compatible with the target environment, leading to issues during migration.

    User Disruptions and Communication. OneDrive tenant-to-tenant migration may cause user disruption, especially if users are not adequately prepared for the migration. Users may lose access to their data or experience downtime during the migration process.

    Retention and Compliance. Security and compliance policies may differ between the source and target environments, leading to issues with data security and compliance during migration.

    Additional licensing and costs. Organizations may need to purchase additional licenses or pay for third-party migration tools, which can add to the overall cost of the migration.

    To mitigate these challenges and issues, it is important to plan the migration carefully and thoroughly, involve all stakeholders in the process, and communicate clearly with end-users. Organizations should also consider engaging with a third-party migration specialist to ensure a successful migration.

    Learn more about other types of services that almost always require data migration:


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