Migrate mailing lists to Google Groups

You can migrate your existing mailing lists (email groups) on an LDAP server to Google Groups, using either of the following:

  • Google Apps Directory Sync: Use this tool to create new groups for any mailing lists on your LDAP server that you want to use with your organization's Google Apps account. Directory Sync synchronizes only groups and their memberships, not the contents or settings of the groups.

    Directory Sync provides a one-way synchronization, so you can continue to maintain your groups on your LDAP server. Learn more about Directory Sync.
     
  • Google Apps Provisioning API (2.0 or later): Use this API to create your own tool to synchronize mailing lists on your LDAP server with Google Apps. This option requires programming expertise. Learn more.

Default settings for migrated groups

Groups you migrate to Google Groups receive these access settings, which you can edit after migration:

  • Who can send messages to the group: Anyone in your domain.
  • Who can view the members list: Anyone in your domain. These users can view the members list in calendar invitations. If the Google Groups for Business service is enabled, they can also view the members list on the group's page in your Google Groups for Business service.
  • Who can invite members: Only owners.
  • Who can view the discussion archive: Archiving is disabled. Applies only if the Google Groups for Business service is enabled.

If the Google Groups for Business service is enabled, the Google Groups for Business sharing settings apply to all migrated groups. Learn more about sharing settings


Using Directory Sync to maintain groups on your LDAP server

You can maintain your groups on an LDAP server and then synchronize them with your Google Groups service periodically, using Google Apps Directory Sync.

How synchronization works

Synchronization works only with groups that were created on the Google Apps admin control panel -- that is, groups that either an administrator added directly or Directory Sync migrated from your LDAP server. If the Google Groups for Business service is enabled, Directory Sync (version 1.6.12 or later) ignores user-created groups.

Each time you run Google Apps Directory Sync, it:

  • Overwrites the members list, owner, and description for groups that also exist on your LDAP server, but ignores the access settings for these groups
  • Deletes groups that don't also exist on your LDAP server

However, you can create exclusion rules in Directory Sync to prevent it from overwriting or deleting specific groups.

If the Google Groups for Business service is enabled

Each time you run Google Apps Directory Sync, it:

  • Ignores all user-created groups (groups that users or administrators create using the Google Groups for Business service interface)
  • Ignores any group's discussion archives and all settings that are available only in the Google Groups for Business service interface
  • Does not add any groups you created on your LDAP server that have the same address as a group that a user already created

If the Google Groups for Business service is enabled, make sure you're using Google Apps Directory Sync 1.6.12 or later. Otherwise, when you run Directory Sync, it will:

  • Delete any groups that users created
  • Remove users from any groups they subscribed to