Migrating to a Microsoft Exchange Hybrid Environment

Firstly, if you want to perform an intra-org migration, refer to the Can CloudM Migrate support an intra-org migration (On-Premises Exchange to Cloud hosted Microsoft 365)? article.


If you are working with AD synchronization tools (e.g. Azure Active Directory Connect) in your environment (e.g. a hybrid Exchange one), there is a high probability that you applied a default configuration for the synchronization process. If so, among various synced AD attributes there is also msExchMailboxGuid.

You will receive an error in Microsoft 365:


Users OnPremises Mailbox Not Migrated

In such a case, assigning an Microsoft 365 license to synced on-premises users will not result in creating mailboxes. You will be able to create an Microsoft 365 mailbox only with Microsoft migration tools, which excludes any possibility of using third-party migration tools like CloudM Migrate.



If you would like to migrate via a third-party migration tool (such as CloudM Migrate), you need to either set the msExchMailboxGuid attribute to NULL or rebuild the synchronization service for on-premises users from scratch, removing the msExchMailboxGuid attribute from AD synchronization.

Keep in mind that after the mailboxes are migrated, Microsoft 365 users are synchronized with your on-premises AD environment. Due of that, you need to manage Microsoft 365 mailboxes (e.g. change their email addresses) through the on-premises Exchange server.

If you delete the mailboxes in your on-premises organization (or decommission the on-premises server), you will not be able to modify or delete their cloud counterparts in Microsoft 365 unless you disable the directory synchronization.


How to (re)configure AD synchronization tools for migration to Microsoft 365

To (re)configure your AD synchronization for migration to Microsoft 365 via third-party software, you need to exclude the msExchMailboxGuid attribute from the syncing process. Follow the steps below.

This example shows a solution for Azure AD Connect, but the general idea is similar for all other AD syncing tools.
  1. Open Azure AD Connect Installer
  2. Click the Configure button to proceed to the next section (Tasks/Additional tasks).
  3. Choose Customize synchronization options from the list and click Next.
  4. In the Connect to Azure AD section, provide your Azure credentials.
  5. In the Domain/OU Filtering step, choose Organizational Units (e.g. HybridUsers) that you want to synchronize and click Next.

  6. Proceed to the Azure AD Attributes step. Select I want to further limit the attributes exported to Azure AD and clear (uncheck) the msExchMailboxGuidcheck box

  7. Click Next to proceed to the last section (Configure). Ensure that the Start the synchronization process when the configuration completes check box is selected.
  8. Click Configure to start full synchronization.

After the synchronization is finished, all the synced accounts will not have their msExchMailboxGuid attributes synced anymore.

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