The only comprehensive migration solution that is easy to deploy, offers superior risk mitigation, and proactively prevents end users from encountering broken Microsoft Office files
ConverterTechnology, provider of software and services to help enterprises capitalize on the benefits of Microsoft Office 2010 without the migration risks of data corruption, today published a comprehensive comparison of its OfficeConverter 2010™ solution and Microsoft’s Office Migration Planning Manager (OMPM) solution that identifies significant differences in their operation and generated results.
Comparative details are outlined in the recently published whitepaper “Streamlining Microsoft Office 2010 Migrations Using Office Converter,” and validate the ability of OfficeConverter 2010 to save significant time across the migration process by efficiently and effectively identifying corrupt files, automatically repairing files, and mitigating risks associated with a migration.
Both OfficeConverter 2010 and Microsoft’s OMPM are used to identify all the files that will have problems once converted to MS Office 2010, but only OfficeConverter offers automated remediation. It also helps organizations with user segmentation by identifying those users or business units most susceptible to risk resulting from problematic files.
“IT administrators and business unit managers know all too well that the most important aspect of any technology rollout is its impact on end-user productivity. An Office 2010 migration presents many challenges. We strongly believe that anything an organization can do to better plan for and streamline the migration will pay huge dividends,” said Shawn Allaway, president, ConverterTechnology. “Large enterprises with massive Office file estates can realize tremendous value from OfficeConverter during their Office 2010 migration. We automate the steps to quickly identify potential problem areas so that organizations can better plan their migration, which gives IT the ability to proactively mitigate risk. Problematic files, in bulk or nominated by end users through our Click2Fix portal, can be quickly scanned, remediated, and returned to production to minimize organizational downtime or inefficiencies post-migration.”
Problems with Microsoft Migration
With Microsoft’s plans to sunset Office 2003, many enterprises face the daunting task of migrating to Microsoft Office 2010.
A migration requires a great deal of planning to mitigate problems with broken or corrupt Excel, Word, PowerPoint, and Access files created in earlier versions of Office. While 80-90 percent of Office files will face no issues following a migration, the 10-20 percent that remain, often critical files, will present varying degrees of problems. A migration to Office 2010 presents the additional challenge of changes in filename extensions. Reconciliation of linked files, especially for files created in Office 2003, requires remediation to avoid breaks in those files synchronizing to Office 2010.
The majority of issues appear in Excel files due to its heavy and complex use of macros and formulas with links between files. Word files are the second most problematic application for enterprises, but most Word files have no Visual Basic programming of concern, whereas an Access file will contain more VBA than a Word file. Enterprises will have millions of Word files compared to hundreds or thousands of Access files.
Best of Three Options – Comprehensive Mitigation with OfficeConverter 2010
IT administrators and business unit managers planning for an Office migration have three options to consider when determining how best to deal with files that will not work properly following the migration. They include:
- “Fix on Fail” – For large enterprises, addressing problems on an “as found” basis can result in significant lost or delayed productivity waiting for technical support for file fixes, diverted resources from other tactical support or strategic development initiatives, and create a backlog of file issues that can hinder IT.
- Use Microsoft’s OMPM Tools – Microsoft offers OMPM at no cost to facilitate Office 2010 migrations. The tool scans files in batches and requires double processing of files – once for scanning and once for converting from the Office 2003 binary file format to the Office 2010 XML file format. In addition, each individual file must be opened and closed to scan for VBA compatibility. OMPM color-codes the level of migration issue identified in each file during a light scan. With a deep scan, OMPM provides a count of the number of lines of VBA code containing potential problems and a count of potential issues caused by moving Office 2010 to a 64-bit environment. OMPM contains multiple tools that each perform one task and must be run separately. It does not offer automatic remediation and has limited reporting prone to under or over reporting potential errors.
- Use ConverterTechnology’s OfficeConverter 2010 – OfficeConverter is the only third-party tool on the market that scans, reports, and converts Office files to Office 2010 in one step. This dramatically speeds up the Office file scanning and conversion to Office 2010 processes. OfficeConverter also provides a greater level of granularity to the extent of problem files, which allows IT to prioritize fixes. OfficeConverter requires a modest software investment and is intuitive enough for IT staff to use without vendor support. OfficeConverter 2010 scans files for potential data loss similar to OMPM, but also provides detailed information about VBA compatibility issues and project references, as well as links to other files. Each file scanned is assigned a numeric severity based on the most severe issue contained in the file. The return on investment is high when considering the dramatic reduction in resource time needed during the migration process.
Head-to-Head Comparison – OfficeConverter 2010 vs. Microsoft’s OMPM
Allaway notes, “When comparing OMPM to OfficeConverter, the performance data clearly shows that OfficeConverter is a more robust solution that significantly reduces migration time. By designing our products to work together, OfficeConverter is the only solution that offers automated remediation, more detailed reporting, and quick and automatic one-time scanning versus the multiple scans needed using OMPM. Simply put, the collaborative nature of our products reduces the entire migration process while ensuring a high degree of accuracy in identifying corrupt mission critical files. Users are back online in a matter of hours, much sooner when compared to OMPM.”
ConverterTechnology offers proven solutions for all deployment hurdles. Its full suite of tools finds and fixes an assortment of problems, including broken links and incompatibility issues, ensuring that files and codes conform to best practice standards. Unlike other approaches, ConverterTechnology’s OfficeConverter automatically remediates, finds, and fixes many errors during and after an upgrade. OfficeConverter also accurately discovers and reports on any issues that require special attention or manual remediation.