If you are moving, or have moved, Public Folder data to SharePoint Online, you’ve probably noticed that manually moving calendars, contacts, and tasks  works pretty well.  It’s a manual process, but when complete it looks good to the end users.  Mail and Post items on the other hand, don’t look as good, because all you can see in SharePoint is the message subject.  All the information in the message such as sender, recipient, sent time, is contained in the message and isn’t visible unless you view it through Outlook.  When you view it through SharePoint all you can see is the subject of the message, as shown below.


This makes it very difficult to do things like sort and filter the messages.  At MessageOps we thought there has to be more we can do for our clients.  A full blown Public Folder migration application was out of the question (at least for now!), so we decided to write a quick app to pull the data from the messages and place it in SharePoint Online.  The application simply reads each message and automatically creates columns in the document library to store the data.  Examples of columns are Subject, TimeRecv,TimeSend, From, Recipients, NumAttachments, and more.  The end result is you can create much more useable views in SharePoint Online, as shown below.


While it may seem trivial, it does make it a little easier for users to work with the messages directly in SharePoint.

Running the application is straight forward, just point it to the document library and it looks for .msg files in that document library, reads the metadata, and then automatically creates the appropriate columns in SharePoint Online to store the data.  The original .msg file isn’t modified.  It’s important to note that the application doesn’t actually copy data from the Public Folders, it simply reads the messages that already exist in the SharePoint document library, and extracts the metadata from the message and populates the SharePoint columns.

Since it’s such a small application, we’ve made it available for download.  The name of the application is SharePoint Metadata Updater (SMU).

If you have any questions about SMU, or your Public Folder to SharePoint Online migration, please feel free to contact us.

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