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Google Apps Sync for Microsoft Outlook - Failed to Initiate Migration

posted 3 May 2011, 19:04 by Scott McKenzie   [ updated 22 Dec 2011, 21:25 ]
We sometimes see this error when we try to migrate an Outlook 2007 profile into Google Apps on a Windows 7 PC.  It would appear to be related to permissions on the PC but even if we run GASMO "as Administrator" the same error still appears as soon as the process is kicked off.

This is a workaround that we've had success with:
  1. Optionally, first export the profile in Outlook as a new pst file.  This can sometimes clean it up a bit eg getting rid of white space created when lots of items were deleted.
  2. Instead of using GASMO, try using GAMMO to do the initial upload of the pst file to the Google Apps mailbox.
  3. Once that initial upload is complete, run GASMO to create a new Outlook profile on the PC which will sync with the now fully populated Google Apps mailbox.

While steps 2 and 3 above normally work, we were never satisfied with them as a workaround since the migration would import the correct folder structure but it would not make the source Inbox the destination Inbox.  Instead it upload the pst email folders under a new parent label.  So, we've kept on this and have found the following solution:

It would appear the issue is UAC-related.  (Unverified, but maybe the user account in all such cases of "Failed to Initiate Migration" has UAC turned to its lowest setting.  So maybe just increasing UAC to the default for the user will work but we've not tested this yet.)  This procedure works:
  1. Export the Outlook mailbox as a new pst file (as in step 1 above)
  2. Create a new Administrator account on the PC with a password
  3. Hold down the Shift key and right click Set up a Google Apps Sync user then choose Run as a different user and enter the username and password of the new administrator account
  4. Select the exported pst file as the profile to import and proceed as normal.
No more Failed to Initiate Migration error.