Fun with DocAve File Migrator Rules

Posted: May 18, 2010 in MOSS 2007

                So I was recently tasked with migrating a mess of files (for those non southern folks…a mess of files would be a number >5,000) into a clients’ MOSS farm. They had to be deployed to multiple doc libs with numerous content types and custom columns. The file source was a very familiar multi-folder hierarchy with folder names that were almost directly in line with the metadata we needed to capture.

                They have DocAve 5x already so that was our migration tool. Seemed easy enough and for the most part…it was…for the most part. There are some limitations and undocumented configuration options that you should be aware of however when you migrate with this tool.

                To begin with. Forget about mapping a folder/drive to the agent that will be running the migration. It is not currently supported (It may be soon however). You will need to map your source through the “\servernamedriveletter$foldersubfolder” format IF you need to apply custom rules. If you don’t need custom rules the mapped drive or normal share will work fine.

                Alright so you got your source set and you get to the mapping setup. Everything seems straightforward, then you get to your rules. You stare at the first field “path” and you go back and forth between Google, the DocAve docs, and you cannot really find a good definition of it. So let’s end the suspense, this field is the path, from the AGENT running the migration, to the data. But wait! There is more. It only allows “Drive:foldersubfolder”  format. So now comes the serious restriction. After a few hours with DocAve technical resources (who were EXTREMELY helpful btw), we find the first limitation. To do this, you need to copy the source files to the AGENT. It will not support a mapped drive, a file share, nor any other method ( I am stressing this is a CURRENT limitation, as my discussions with AvePoint’s technical resources led me to believe this may be corrected soon).

                So the end solution, I copied all my source data to a secondary data drive on my Agent (which was also one of my WFEs), added it as a source in DocAve, then used the path from the AGENT (in this case “D:MigrationData” to derive my rules. And voila! It worked!

                A couple words to the wise on these rules, PLAN THEM OUT. Examine your folder structure on the source, adjust if necessary, to limit the rule count. A good measure is to write a couple catch all rules to catch those files that somehow escape your normal rules. This keeps at least your base Metadata populated. If you are brining across a mess of files, it is very likely you will have a good chunk of files/folders that fall outside the rules you set.

                Second, a good methodology, Build a couple rules with the UI, then click the “Download” button to pull down the rule XML. You will find a lot of your rules can be rapidly developed with this xml file, a good XML editor, and a lot of ctrl+c, ctrl+v with minor edits. In my migration I had 30+ rules I developed this manner which would have been a royal pain through the UI but were simple with the XML file.

           Anyway, overall it was a great experience and the tool worked very nicely once the learning curve and limitations were overcome. Hopefully we can shorten both for anyone reading this.

                Happy Migrations everyone!

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