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How to Migrate from Plesk to Office 365?

Plesk is a widely used commercial web hosting and server data center automation solution. It has an intuitive control panel that many Linux and Windows-based retail hosting service providers use to render their services to end-users. Some users use the solution to manage their webmail services. As their business grows, they need more features and functionalities that are available in a full-fledged productivity suite such as Microsoft 365/ Office 365. Let us explore how to migrate from Plesk to Office 365/ Microsoft 365.

What Are the Advantages of Plesk to Office 365 Migration?

While the Plesk mail server simplifies mailbox and mailing list management, businesses still have to rely on their mail server software for email services. Here are the advantages of migrating from your on-premises mail server with Plesk to Office 365.

  • Office 365/ Microsoft 365 plans include Exchange Online that does not depend on your on-premises server for email service. As a fully managed service by Microsoft, there is no management overhead.
  • In addition to the mail services, users get access to other applications and services such as Word Online, Excel Online, and Microsoft Teams.
  • Management of accounts, users, devices, and services is much simpler using the Microsoft 365 admin center.

In addition to these advantages, migrating from a self-hosted email server with Plesk to Exchange Online can help you take advantage of better spam filtration services, distributed nodes, a widespread network, and a better reputation with blacklist service providers.

How to Migrate Mail Services from Plesk to Office 365?

If you are using Plesk for DNS services for your mail hosting, you will have to configure Office 365 to migrate your services from your existing mailing solution with Plesk to Microsoft Exchange Online.

Here is what you need to do to configure your domain to change to Microsoft Office 365 as your mail service provider.

Domain Verification in Office 365

  • The first stage of configuring Office 365 as your mail service involves domain verification.
  • Open the Domains page in the Admin center after logging in to your Office 365 account.
  • Add the domain that you will be using for the mail service with Office 365 and click on Start setup.
  • Once you navigate to the Verify domain page, select Add a TXT record instead, and then click on Next.
  • This TXT verification record will have to be used in the Plesk control panel to redirect emails to your Office 365 mailboxes.

Configuring Plesk Server for Office 365 Mail Services

Once the domain verification is complete, you need to redirect mails to Office 365 servers and configure the existing server to stop accepting mails on behalf of your domain. Here are the steps to do this.

  • Type in the TXT verification record you generated in the previous step in the Plesk Edit DNS Zone screen.
  • Similarly, update the MX, CNAME, and SPF records.
  • Remove all the conflicting records and click on the Update button.
  • Once the DNS propagation is complete, return to the domain’s properties page.
  • Uncheck Activate mail service on this domain for disabling mail services on the old DNS server.

How to Migrate Email Content from Plesk to Office 365?

While the DNS update will ensure that emails go to your Office 365 mailboxes, the Plesk to Office 365 migration is not complete without moving the contents of the existing mailboxes to Office 365. The simplest way to do that is by using IMAP migration. However, you will not be able to migrate calendar items, contacts, and other components with this method.

The second option is to use Office 365 connectors. These will allow you to control the mail flow between the Plesk server and Office 365. The disadvantage of this method is that you cannot decommission your on-premises server and may only be able to use Office 365 Group shared inboxes with the connectors.

The last option is to use third-party migration tools. These tools can migrate all mailbox contents, generate detailed migration logs, and provide advanced tools for streamlining the migration process. However, you will still have to plan the migration and set up accounts for your users.

Apps4Rent Can Help with Plesk to Office 365 Migration

Migrating from a self-hosted server with Plesk to Office 365 is a step in the right direction for businesses adopting a cloud-first approach. As a Microsoft Certified Gold Partner and Tier 1 CSP for Office 365, Apps4Rent provides 24/7 phone, chat, and email support for Office 365/ Microsoft 365 migration services. Contact our consultants today for plans and migration support.

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