Running Google Apps with Microsoft Exchange

Businesses who want to run an on-premise email solution alongside Google Apps are looking to either:

1. Test Google Apps while running their existing mail solution as an interim transitional step between a on-premises email solution and a full hosted email solution.

2. Use Google Apps as a back-up to their on-premise solution, such as Exchange

3. Are utilizing Microsoft Exchange for handling other software programs relating to inventory management, customer relationship management, etc.

Both scenarios are definitely possible with Google. Apps. Google Apps generally provides the flexibility to do whatever you need to do with your email, it’s just a question of how much configuration you have to do on your end for your specific business needs. Once everything is in place, and incoming/outgoing email is being captured in Google Apps, you will be able to fail over seamlessly to Google Apps should the need arise. As you come to be comfortable with the cost, reliability, and convenience of Google-hosted email, you and your users will be able to transition over to Google Apps as a complete solution.

You can either a) route your domain’s mail with an MX record change directly to Google Apps, and have it delivered to Google Apps mailboxes, and then passed onto your existing server,

or b) set up an intermediary mail gateway that can dual-deliver mail to both Google Apps and your existing mail server. This should ensure that incoming mail is available in both systems.

For outbound mail, you will have to set up your existing mail system to send your domain’s mail through Google Apps.

Google also has a directory sync tool via a Single-Sign-On (SSO) API so that your business’ active directory integrates seamlessly alongside Google Apps. Google Apps Single Sign-on API lets you:

  • Integrate your own authentication or LDAP system with Google Apps and securely login your users to Google Apps based on your own security standards
  • Integrate with leading web single sign on systems, or facilitate authentication via Active Directory or other directory servers.
  • Integrate Google Apps with websites that have their own username and authentication mechanisms, eliminating the need for users to log in multiple times.

If you are interested in deploying Google Apps, but require SSO or LDAP integration, we recommend one of two solutions:

1. You can use the SSO API to sync users’ names and passwords when a user sets them on your system. While this will not keep your users’ passwords exactly in sync, it does allow our system to have the same password as your sso. This also allows for increased access to our system beyond the web interface.

2. Google Apps’ SAML 2.0-based SSO integration allows you to hold all your users’ accounts and passwords without the need for Google Apps to hold any user passwords.

From the Online Strategy Blog of !escunid

If you would like more information, or to discuss a Google Apps implementation for your organization, please do not hesitate to contact !escunid Online Development.