VFE is transitioning to Archived User

Starting February 15, 2022, Google will automatically transition your Vault Former Employee (VFE) subscription to an Archived User or Google Vault subscription, depending on your Google Workspace or G Suite edition.

We introduced Archived User subscriptions to replace VFE subscriptions and help you manage your former employees data. After we transition you, your current VFE subscription will be canceled and you can enjoy the Archived User service at no cost until January 15, 2023.

You will need to transition off your VFE subscription by June 30, 2022.

If you have a Google Workspace for Education subscription, learn how the transition impacts you.

Prepare for the transition

Before February 15, 2022, you should do the following:

  1. Learn how Archived User licensing works.
  2. Review the list of users in your organization that have VFE licenses. To identify the users, download a list of users.
    • To download a list of only VFE users, from the Users page, click Add a filter""Assigned license""Google Vault - Former Employee.
    • These users won't be able to sign in to any Google service after their VFE license transitions to an Archived User license. To give a user access later, you can unarchive a user.
  3. If you no longer want to keep archived data for former employees, you can use the Data Export tool to export your organization's data.
  4. If you have auto licensing turned on, review the settings for each subscription and organizational unit. Learn about automatic licensing for organizational units.
    • Your current auto-licensing settings will apply to VFE users after they're transitioned. This could cause additional licenses to be assigned to these users and additional monthly charges depending on the payment plan for each subscription.

How you're charged after the transition

After we transition you, your Archived User subscription will be put on the Flexible payment plan and you won't be charged until January 15, 2023. After that, you'll be charged every month for each archived user in your organization.

If your Google Workspace or G Suite subscription has been suspended because of a failure with your primary form of payment, you will need to set up billing within 30 days to prevent your Archived User subscription from getting suspended.

For more information about pricing, contact your Google account manager.

Remove unwanted VFE licenses

After an initial no-cost period, you'll be charged monthly for each user in your organization who has an Archived User license. If you have users with more than one VFE license because they have multiple user accounts, you can remove the duplicate licenses before or after the transition.

There are 2 tools available that let you merge data across duplicate accounts:

  • Data Migration Service (DMS)—Service available in the Google Admin console that imports email, calendar, and contacts data from external sources (for example, Exchange, Godaddy) into Google Workspace. DMS is designed to be easy to use and completely self-serve.
  • Google Workspace Migration for Microsoft Exchange (GWMME)—Utility that migrates email, calendar, and contacts data from a user’s Exchange server or mail from a Google Workspace account. GWMME can migrate a user’s email from almost any type of mail server (including Exchange, Novell GroupWise, and Gmail) to Google Workspace.

If you have former employees with VFE licenses that you don't want to keep, you can delete their user accounts after you use the Data Export tool to export your organization's data.

VFE transition questions

Below are some common questions about transitioning from a VFE subscription.

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How does the transition affect my current VFE subscription?

All your users with VFE licenses will be transitioned to an Archived User or Vault subscription. After the transition, your current VFE subscription will be deleted. There will be no service disruption or loss of data.

How does the transition impact Google Workspace for Education subscriptions?

Google Workspace for Education customers with a VFE subscription will not be transitioned to an Archived User subscription because all free and paid editions of Google Workspace for Education already include Google Vault functionality.

When the VFE subscription is deleted, any users you assigned VFE licenses will stay in the same state as they were before, either suspended or active. The only change is they'll no longer have a VFE license assigned to them.

If you want to prevent a user who previously had a VFE license from signing in to their account, suspend the user.

Can I keep my VFE subscription?

All VFE subscriptions must transition to an Archived User or Vault subscription. We'll transition your organization to the recommended subscription starting February 15, 2022.

What subscription will I transition to?

We will transition you to an Archived User subscription that corresponds to the Google Workspace or G Suite edition you currently have.

Archived User subscriptions are available for these editions:

  • Google Workspace Enterprise Plus
  • Google Workspace Enterprise Standard
  • Google Workspace Business Plus
  • G Suite Business

If your edition doesn't have one of the corresponding Archived User subscriptions listed above, we'll transition you to a Vault subscription.

We won't transition you to an Archived User subscription and we will cancel your VFE subscription in these situations:

  • You don't have any users with a VFE license assigned at the time of the transition.
  • You don't have a Google Workspace or G Suite subscription.
What will I be charged for the Archived User subscription?

Your Archived User subscription will be put on the Flexible payment plan and you won't be charged until January 15, 2023. After that, you'll be charged every month for each archived user in your organization.

Can I cancel my Archived User subscription?

If you decide not to keep archived data for former employees before, during, or after the grace period, you can export your organization’s data.


Google, Google Workspace, and related marks and logos are trademarks of Google LLC. All other company and product names are trademarks of the companies with which they are associated.

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