Email to the Cloud

Karen O'Neill's picture


Welcome to the Email to the Cloud Project Site


Click here for FAQs and how you can prepare for the migration.

  • UCSF is migrating from an on premise email environment to a cloud-based email service provided by Microsoft. This includes email, calendars, contacts, and public folders. Migrating our email services to the cloud allows UCSF to maintain and improve upon existing enterprise email services without requiring heavy investments in upgrading our on-site infrastructure to meet our campus’ growing needs. There are many advantages to moving to a cloud based email offering, which are highlighted below.
  • Migrations started full-swing in April, with the goal to migrate over 40,000 email boxes from our current on premise environment to the cloud by the end of the fiscal year. We are migrating thousands of accounts every week.
  • How does this benefit employees?
    • Increased Storage: your email box will now have 100 GB of storage
    • Mobility: An updated web client user interface that has been optimized for tablets and smart phones, in addition to desktops and laptops.
  • How does this benefit UCSF?
    • Cost Savings: Cloud infrastructure allows us to leverage a robust infrastructure with a lower total cost of ownership. Migrating to the cloud eliminates the costs associated with upgrading, maintaining and supporting our existing on premise infrastructure; and reduces our on-going operational costs.
    • High Availability: The geo-redundant, continuously replicated, cloud email service provides high-availability for email services and provides increased business continuity capabilities for UCSF.
    • Privacy and Confidentiality: Provisions for ensuring confidentiality, privacy, and security of UCSF email are provided. There is no data mining of UCSF data conducted by Microsoft.


The Email to the Cloud project is comprised of two sub-projects as follows:

  • Voicemail Migration to Cisco Unity - Completed on March 9, 2017!
    • 9000 users were migrated from the Exchange Unified Messaging voice mail system to Cisco Unity. This was a prerequisite needed for the email migration.

  • Migration of On-Premise Email to the Cloud
    • Over 40,000 email boxes including calendars and Public Folders are being moved to the Cloud; this started in March 2017 and is targeted for completion by the end of June 2017. 
    • Users will be notified before the migration of their mailbox; and confirmed after their mailbox has moved to the cloud. No action is anticipated on the Outlook desktop once the migration is complete. However, mobile devices (smartphones and tablets) and Apple Mail clients will need to be manually configured post-migration. In addition, individuals who use the Outlook web client (also known as mail@UCSF, OWA or to access their email, will need to change the way they login. See below for instructions.


Date:   Status:
Apr 20 Migrations are well underway; we have over 6900 mailboxes in the cloud. Our migration schedule includes migrating thousands of mailboxes daily (Monday-Friday).
Mar 29

Pilot migrations have continued this week. Over 300 tenants at Mission Center Building (MCB) were migrated today, and we now have over 500 users in the cloud!

UCSF student email accounts are scheduled for migration the week of April 4th.

Mar 21 Pilot migrations continue this week. We now have approximately 150 mailboxes in the cloud!
Mar 14 Initial migrations are underway. Approximately 30 UCSF mailboxes have been migrated to the cloud; the next wave of migrations is targeted for completion by March 20th.
Feb 21

We continue to work through technical issues identified in pre-pilot. Once these are resolved, we will provide an updated pilot start date.

Feb 3 While our technical teams have been diligently working on all activities to support migration of Email to the Cloud, some technical issues surfaced during the pre-pilot phase, and as a result, the actual pilot start date is delayed to February. We will update the project page once the pilot has begun, and reach out to pilot participants with more specific instructions at that time.
Jan 3 Return from New Year's Holiday
Dec 23 Break for Christmas Holiday
Dec 16 Infrastructure Implementations completed
Dec 2 Design Document provided
Nov 17 Assessment & Recommendations Report provided
Oct 20 Project Kickoff

Things to Consider The Day Your Email Migrates to the Cloud

  • Rest assured all of the experiences you might encounter are fixable, and you will not lose any email or calendar events because of the migration or by deleting/adding new profiles.
  • The email move to the cloud entails multiple, auto-generated steps to complete: migration of email and calendar, synchronization and upload to the cloud. Please anticipate that this can take 90 minutes to complete depending on the size of your mailbox; elapsed time of the migration will vary. Large mailboxes will take longer to synchronize to your client.
  • If within three hours of the migration you are experiencing issues, please report those immediately to the Service Desk (415-514-4100) and our team will respond and resolve as soon as possible.
  • As your mailbox is synchronizing to your client, you may not see email or calendaring information immediately. Please be patient – especially if you have a large mailbox.
  • If you are the owner of a global distribution list, once your account migrates to the cloud, you will need to submit requests for updates via the Service Desk. We are working on a solution that will enable you to self-maintain global distribution lists, and anticipate that this functionality will be available in the coming weeks. 

Important Information for mobile and web clients:

  • Email Online Web App page for web client information
    • New Username for Email - After you’ve been migrated, use your primary email address as your username (e.g. Your password remains the same.
    • Web Client - Post migration, the URL to login to Outlook Web App (OWA) is Also available via MyAccess!

Contact Us

Email questions about the email-to-the-cloud project to: