Migrating File Shares to SharePoint Libraries

The following points may be valuable as you consider migrating content from Windows file shares to SharePoint document libraries. One white paper worth reading is given below:

Setting up Windows SharePoint Services as a Collaborative File Store


Although the following list may not be comprehensive, it will get you the 80 for the 20 as you start the process:


Planning and Implementation


1. Content to Migrate – Evaluate and review the content currently stored on the shared drives.  Typically, only 20-30% of this content is being used routinely (I'm being conservation…).  Only content accessed in the last x days (e.g. 30 days) should be migrated. This could be an initial migration. You will need to define what x is based on your own internal requirements.  Any remaining content could be archived and deleted from the share or remain on the shared drives to be indexed by SPS search.


2. Metadata – Based on the documents to be migrated into SharePoint, define the appropriate metadata that accurately defines the content. These properties will represent the metadata inside of the SharePoint document libraries. The metadata can also be used to define what custom properties will be indexed by SPS search.


SharePoint Document Libraries and Property Promotion


Metadata and unghosting


3. Document Security – SharePoint security can be configured at the Site and Document Library levels (SPS 2007 will deliver document-level security).  So as you migrate your content, you are moving from a folder and file security-based structure on Windows ACLs to a Site and Library security model.  Hence you are losing some granularity to achieve collaboration and storage benefits.  Therefore, you will need to decide how you are going to secure your documents using a combination of site membership and document library permissions.


4. Site and Document Library Structure – Define a topology that functionally represents the needs of the organization and not necessarily the organizational chart.  Because of the SharePoint security model, you can store documents with a common set of user-access requirements in the same document library.  This may produce multiple document libraries per site.  Or you could create a site hierarchy that controls the security of your document access.  You will need to decide which approach or combination best meets your needs.


5. Leadership Buy-in – You may need executive buy-in to enforce the use of SharePoint libraries as opposed to network file shares.  Even though personnel may hate file shares they have become an easy content dump and most people hate change.  Personnel may be required to “clean-up” their drives and define the content to be migrated.  Defining a governing body to make policy level decisions regarding content has proven to be valuable in a number of deployments.


Also make sure you check out www.metalogix.com as they have a tool that migrates file shares to SPS document libraries.


And last, I found a good summary of what not to do on SharePoint.


Food for thought............................