Moving from cloud to cloud

Yes, I sold my domain name -- I wasn't looking to sell, but an opportunity came along in which I couldn't refuse. Thus, began my transition in the cloud. I needed to move this sold domain name ( to another domain name (, all of which was in the cloud with Google Apps. My first step was to ask my colleague about his recommendations as well as look online at the various tools. I was hoping it was really simple. Something like this image:

So, I did learn it was not that easy. Although I was moving from one cloud to another, I was staying in the same cloud system (Google Apps). I was not moving to another online product, but rather staying with the one I already know. You might remember my previous post about the condo analogy. Basically, I was moving from one condo to another. I wasn't changing anything at all. You would think I could pack up my data (luggage and furniture) and just move!

Well, it was kind of like that, but it is not as easy as that image portrays. It's also not as difficult as it used to be either. Just so you know, it took me about 6 hours to complete the entire transition (condo move). Just to give you a sense of what I was moving, it was two email accounts & one document and calendar account.

Most of that time was waiting for files to move (maybe that's the movers I hired!), let me explain my steps (this is not a how-to guide, there are lots of those out there, it's more like what I did and what I found):

  • Downloaded Mozilla Thunderbird. Retrieved all the email from my account from Logged into the email account. Manually copied each folder (found in Thunderbird) from the to the email account. This ran overnight as the process was quite a bandwidth hog. All my folders copied over but I left the spam alone! This process took the longest and ran a few nights with a few restarts thrown in when my computer froze.
  • Exported my calendar from Google Calendar ( and imported into Google Calendar ( Easy and quick.
  • Downloaded my Google Docs to my hard drive (each category was exported separately to create unique folders). Expanded the zipped files into folders (the categories). Imported into my new Google Docs using the special import folder function which creates a category. Worked great except for those documents that were in multiple categories which were imported twice. Thus, I needed to clean up my newly imported data. Opened my account and account and compared manually. Took a bit of time, but it was do-able.

Some things that I learned after the import:

  • A feature that I like with Google Docs is the ability to see what I have worked on recently and what I worked on a couple days ago, etc. I didn't realize how much I used that information when working with my document until I didn't have it (isn't it just like that?!). Well, when I imported the data, that information is no longer there. I'll have to build that up again. Sigh!
  • When exporting the Google Docs, they came to my computer as docs, excel spreadsheets, etc. When re-imported, the formatting did change a bit. Not a perfect process, but close enough.
  • All my special markers and such with my email came across just fine in the new email account. Thunderbird did a great job of moving files back, it just took a long time!
  • It was helpful to move the Sent Mail from the old account to the new account. I often had emails in that folder that were important (as I realized when digging around for an email I sent out).
  • I used tasks and those did not import. There is currently no way to import tasks from Google calendar, so I just printed out all my current tasks and hand entered them into the new calendar tasks. Worked okay, but I lost all my completed tasks. I really don't care about that though.

All in all, moving from cloud to cloud wasn't bad at all! I must say, I don't want to do it again anytime soon. Then again, I don't think most people liking moving in general.

Until next time friend....