This is a guest blog from Eduardo Fernandez of MigrationBox, a SoftLayer Tech Marketplace Partner specializing in simplifying the process of transferring email and other types of data between services.
Tech Partners Marketplace: http://www.softlayer.com/marketplace/migrationbox
Take Control of Your Cloud Data
Online services are great, but moving your data to the cloud and moving it between cloud services is very difficult and time-consuming. Think about all the data that you have online: email, contacts, calendars, documents ... What happens when you want to switch to a different provider? Maybe your company changed names or is acquiring another company or you want to move to a cheaper or better email provider. It's really difficult to move this data, especially when you're talking about hundreds or thousands of accounts.
I first ran into this problem about a year ago. I was doing consulting work for a client, and he asked me to move their company email to Google Apps. I found out that it's really hard to transfer email in bulk. I'm a hacker, so it didn't take me too long to come up with a tool that did a pretty good job at transferring the accounts one-by-one. Then I thought I could just make a product out of this tool so that other people could use it as well.
At that point, I found it wasn't that easy.
Processing email at scale is challenging. You see problems like buggy protocol implementations, unreliable network connections and bandwidth throttling. I had to bring people to the team like our Chief Architect Carlos Cabañero, and it took us several months to come up with an scalable migration platform. The good news is that we made this platform service-agnostic, so it's not only able to transfer email, it also transfers any type of data - we only have to write connectors to deal with various services.
At the moment, we're focusing on email and the Google Apps suite, but we will be expanding our offering to support popular business applications like Microsoft Exchange and SharePoint, and consumer apps like Flickr and Delicious.
Vendor lock-in is a growing concern when companies move to the cloud. Our objective is to give you control of your data, so you are free to move it to another service. With MigrationBox, you are not locked in anymore.
When our customer base started to grow, we ran into scalability problems ourselves. Data migration is a bandwidth-intensive process that requires lots of RAM and computing power. Fortunately, with SoftLayer we have more raw server power and automation capabilities than we'll ever need.
The wave of moving your data online is just getting started. The cloud is popular, but only 5% of enterprises have moved their email into the cloud so far. This is just the beginning, and email is just one service. Everything is moving to the cloud: CRM, storage, document management ... Cloud migration problems are going to grow and grow over the next five years, and MigrationBox will be there to help.
-Eduardo Fernandez, MigrationBox
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