We've been preparing for something like this in the migration world, finally Microsoft has released help in the form of an API for Office 365 migration of file shares or SharePoint On-Premises. In the past, there was no way for you to migrate to Office 365 without using a tool and even if you did, your experience could be very different if you had a lot to move.
I'll be honest, you still need a tool because the Office 365 Migration API doesn't support a lot of the scenarios, but at least now, it's extremely fast to move to Office 365.
What is the Office 365 Migration API
I've already covered what the Office 365 Migration API actually is, but just for a quick recap let's go over it again. First and foremost, it's for developers or mostly vendors to be honest to help get content only (files or list items) to Office 365 by leveraging a temporary Azure Storage account.
The Azure Storage will incur costs, but relatively inexpensive as it's just storage and again very temporary. Once your files are copied over to Azure, Microsoft runs a regular timer to come and import your migration package when it's ready and imports it into the right location in your existing Office 365 SharePoint structure.
Currently, certain columns, like the Managed Metadata, isn't supported and it's a replacement API, meaning it'll replace what's there if you run it to import to an existing location that already has content. It also does not copy anything else like List or Libraries and their settings, sites, content types, workflows, etc... So, all of it has to be ready before you create the complex XML migration package.
So yeah, technically, you can do all of it yourself. Frankly, and I'm not saying this because I work at Sharegate, but you'll need a tool that will be able to combine the new API with the old migration ways to do what the API can't do.
How does the new Migration of Files and List Items work
There is no better way to show something than in a picture, well maybe a movie actually. Aside from the detailed explanation of the Office 365 Migration API in my previous post, I thought it'd be cool to help you see how it all works in an infographic, so you can help others understand it quickly if you need to.
At the end of the day, what you, or your customers if that's the case, want is for the migration to work and in a timely fashion. To pick up a Site Collection or multiple and copy them to the destination with your different options and start using Office 365 quickly. I believe this new migration API will help many organization move a whole lot faster and open up the gates to Office 365.
What do you think of the new Office 365 Migration API?