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Thread: Useful, actual migration from Entourage to Zimbra - How?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
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    Default Useful, actual migration from Entourage to Zimbra - How?


    I'm going to preface this post by saying that most of my migrated users are having a great migration experience. All of the new Zimbra users that I have moved from an existing MerckMail webmail system onto Zimbra's web interface went perfectly, the Outlook users using POP migrated perfectly using the .pst converter and the Outlook Sync Connector, and for about 90-95% of the users, their new Zimbra life is filled with rainbows and unicorns.

    However - not for the Mac users migrating from Entourage. Not at all.

    I'm not even going to begin dealing with the hassle of moving old e-mails from Entourage into Zimbra, as far as I am concerned that is a non-issue that we won't even deal with, those e-mails are going to be kept in Entourage and referenced thru Entourage as needed, and moved on a need-by-need basis.

    But here's the big issue that is causing a huge problem in our studio... How in the world can you effectively get your contacts out of Entourage and into Zimbra? I've tried the following, all of which were suggested on this board...

    1. Suggested: Export each individual vCard out of Entourage and into Zimbra. Actual: Zimbra will not import vCards exported out of Entourage.

    2. Suggested: Install Zimbra's iCal Sync, then sync Entourage with iCal, then import contacts from iCal into Zimbra. Actual: Contacts come in all kinds of jacked up, with all data in different fields than the ones in which they were created (ie: names come in in "Other" fields, phone numbers in address fields, etc).

    3. Suggested: download shareware (suggested in one of the threads in this board, don't remember what the name of that one was) which would transfer all contact info from Entourage into Address Book, then sync Address Book with Zimbra via iCal Sync. Actual: contacts again come in extremely jacked up and disorganized, but in a completely different way (but equally disorganized way) than jacked up in Method #2. Now I have a user that has literally THOUSANDS of useless, jumbled contacts in their Zimbra Contacts. Fun, fun.

    On top of the jacked up contacts, here's what else I've got going on - one user who HEAVILY relied on Calendars in Entourage spent an entire day transferring a few months of data to new shared Zimbra Calendars yesterday. Today, Mac boots up, iSync starts up, and the sync completely overwrote all - repeat ALL - of the calendars that had been created and shared with about twenty other users. "ANGRY" doesn't really do justice to the flurry of profanity I heard coming out of that office.

    So here I am with a studio filled with people screaming "why did we change from Entourage in the first place?", "Our e-mail was working just fine beforehand, why did we move to this new server", "Where the f**k are my calendars I spent all day creating in this program you made us use", etc.

    NOW - here's what I'm looking for...

    1. Someone please tell me a PROVEN migration method to move users Contacts from Entourage to Zimbra. Please do not suggest beta versions or untested shareware, I have gone down that road and it does not work. This is happening in a real world, production environment with real live data and I can not / will not / do not have the luxury of trying out a theory.

    2. If #1 can't be suggested, then someone please tell me how to first delete all the thousands of jumbled useless contacts in the Zimbra Address Book so I can start fresh, and then uninstall the iCal sync that is not working so it will not step on or erase anything I put into the now clean Zimbra Address Book. I'll hand enter all of these contacts from Entourage into Zimbra, it can't possibly take any longer than this exercise has already cost me.

    Thank you for your time - any responses, even ones saying "yep, sounds horrible, glad I'm not you" are appreciated. Responses with actual answers would be nice as well. And let me apologize in advance for the snarky tone of this post, but it's been twelve hours of hell today and that means it's a half-day.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Melbourne, VIC, Australia
    Rep Power

    Thumbs down zimbra + isync connector + entourage nightmare


    I totally understand your frustration. I am now working for about 2 WEEKS to get ONE zimbra account sorted that needs data migrated from ONE entourage and should sync to 2x Entourage (iMac + MacBook) + Palm Treo.

    The data: about 6000 address book entries and 10500 calendar items. Someone must have been asleep while writing the functional requirements for the isync connector - there is no "DO NOT SYNC ITEMS IN THE PAST" option (this is 2/3rd of the calendar data in this case).

    I have now 3 days left to come up with a solution.......

    But to be fair - I had about 15 Mac - Entourage - isync connector migrations that went totally smooth.... but these were cases with not more then 100 address book entries and less then 100 calendar items.

    And just now - isync connector asks me to add 44 calendar items to my calendar..... yes - I have exactly 44 item and it likes to create a duplicate for each..... I do not like it anymore.....

    Kind Regards

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Rep Power


    I totally agree here. I've been frustrated w/ the iSync connector too. Where is the "only sync from past xx weeks and future xx weeks?" I have clients, similar to yours (with a lot of PIM info) that suddenly, after weeks of being fine, iSync asks "you have xxx conflicts in Address Book and xxx in Contacts, do you want to sync?" No idea where that is coming from and its really frustrating. I went as far as going thru the conflicts quickly and the local iCal has many duplicates, AB seems fine. But then his blackberry tied into Zimbra w/ NotifyLink had triple/quad copies of items!!! Oye the pain! Oye the Agony!!!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Rep Power

    Post Importing contacts

    Well, I may be able to help with one part of it: importing the contacts. The iSync gadget is giving me fits too, though.

    I read that if you use Outlook to export contacts to csv, then Zimbra web interface just imports it (from Preferences). Can't deny or confirm, since our Outlook dies with "unable to start import/export service".

    Here's what I did:

    1. Bought a shareware set of AppleScripts,

    2. Used the Export Entourage Contacts/Groups script to export all contacts to a file. The scripts I have only produce tab-delimited files. The script asks you for the directory into which to place the output, but the output is always called 'Contacts Export EvX.txt'

    3. Edited that file:

    i. Deleted the last two lines (they contain some sort of metadata).

    ii. Deleted all " (double quotes).

    iii. Replaced (I used Emacs) all tabs with "," (double quote, comma, double quote).

    iv. Placed a " (double quote) at the beginning and at the end of each line.

    v. Replaced the first, header line with this:

    "Full Name","First Name","Last Name","Salutation","Suffix","Nickname","Company"," Job Title","Department","Business Street","Business City","Business State","Business Postal Code","Business Country","Web Page","Home Street","Home City","Home State","Home Postal Code","Home Country","Home URL","Default Address","Home Phone","Home Phone 2","Home Fax","Business Phone","Business Phone 2","Business Fax","Pager","Mobile Phone","Company Main Phone","Assistant Phone","Old mobile","PDA Support","Custom Phone 3","Custom Phone 4","Custom 1","Custom 2","Custom 3","Custom 4","Custom 5","Custom 6","Custom 7","Custom 8","Custom date 1","Custom date 2","Spouse","Birthday","Anniversary","Children","N otes","Age","Astrology sign","Interests","Furigana First Name","Furigana Last Name","Furigana Company Name","Furigana Spouse Name","Bloodtype","Japanese Format","Categories","E-mail Address","E-mail 2 Address","E-mail 3 Address","E-mail 4 Address","E-mail 5 Address","E-mail 6 Address","E-mail 7 Address","E-mail 8 Address","E-mail 9 Address","E-mail 10 Address","E-mail 11 Address","E-mail 12 Address","E-mail 13 Address"

    4. Used this command to convert the file from "Mac line breaks" to "Unix line breaks":

    perl -pi -e 's/\r/\n/g' < 'Contacts Export EvX.txt' > Contacts.txt

    5. Used the Zimbra web interface (Preferences, Address Book, Import CSV file) to import this file. I use Firefox, so I have to sit and click "Continue" a few dozen times because Firefox thinks the script is taking too long and may be hung.

    I've done this several times, and it worked for me reliably. The conversion isn't perfect, for example, the Department field is missing, and once in a while I have to rearrange work and home street addresses, etc. But all in all, it's usable (if you are a masochistic, desperate-to-escape-Exchange geek like me).

    Now, if only I could get the Zimbra Apple iSync Connector to load the Address Book with these entries, instead of with duplicated, outdated, coming -from-Satan-knows-where entries... we may actually convert our evaluation Zimbra to a bought one. But that's the subject for another thread.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Rep Power

    Question Bump

    Hey there

    So someone that just started at our office is using a Mac with OS X Leopard. He came into the company using Entourage and wants to import those old contacts and calendars into Entourage on his new computer. I didn't know if there was a better solution found than purchasing shareware. Have there been any updates in this area since Zimbra 5?


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Rep Power


    I haven't needed to export calendar data, but I've been able to export contacts from Entourage and import them into Zimbra easily. Here's what I did:

    1. In Entourage Preferences, General Preferences -> Sync Services - check "Synchronize contacts with Address Book and .Mac" Click OK, then select "Replace Sync Services items with Entourage items".

    2. Open the OS X Address Book, select all contacts and then File -> Export -> Export vCard.

    3. Upload the vCard data to the Zimbra server using the command from the wiki: User Migration - Zimbra :: Wiki

    curl -u ZIMBRAUSERNAME:PASSWORD --data-binary @/PATH/TO/vCards.vcf

    It seems to work very well as far as not munging data.


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