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  • “In the end, by the migration we have saved the department nearly a million dollars. That number is higher because when you go back to the 100% uptime then you really, really get a better number due to increased productivity in terms of mobility and the ability to integrate with numerous technologies like iPad, Android devices, iPhone, etc.

    This has opened new horizons to new technology which enables other changes as well.

    Also within the project, the migration of archived email gives us the ability to control the data and provide much more visibility to how much document retention the department has. We saw a storage reduction of nearly 50% in both live mail and archive mail.”

    Chris Chambers
    Assistant Bureau Chief
    Department of Justice

Case Study

Virtual Messaging Infrastructure with Email Migration

Jun 2013

Department of Justice Achieves Continuous Availability and Disaster Resiliency through Exchange Implementation while Reducing Costs.

The Department of Justice faced multiple limitations and risks for several business applications critical to reliable 24/7 operations communications for nearly 6,000 email users. Implementation of a virtual messaging infrastructure that included the migration from Novell GroupWise to the Microsoft Exchange Email System provided critical application integration with high availability, disaster recovery assurance, and mobility empowerment.


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The California Department of Justice (DOJ) protects the citizens of California by carrying out the responsibilities of the Attorney General through several main divisions and bureaus, including the Division of Law Enforcement and the Division of California Justice Information Services. With more than 5000 employees, the department operates statewide with major offices in Sacramento, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Oakland, San Diego and Fresno.

Solution Overview

BUSINESS SITUATION: The DOJ maintains 6,000 email mailboxes and operates 24/7. Reliable communications are critical to operations. Integrating email with various business applications increases process efficiencies and improves work quality. However, the DOJ’s existing email system presented limitations and risks for several crucial business applications.
SOLUTION: Through exceptional teamwork and solid project management, ENS-Inc assisted the DOJ with the design, development, and implementation of a virtual messaging infrastructure that included the fast-track migration from Novell GroupWise to the Microsoft Exchange Email System.
BENEFITS: Implementation of the virtual messaging infrastructure provided critical application integration with high availability, disaster recovery assurance, and vital mobility support.
  • Email Migration
  • Email High Availability
  • Microsoft Exchange 2010
  • Microsoft Lync
  • Microsoft Outlook 2010
  • VMware vSphere 5.1
  • Project Management
  • HP C7000 Blade Servers


The Department of Justice maintains nearly 6,000 email mailboxes used by individuals and groups and operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Reliable and timely communications are highly critical to operations. Email is the primary means of communication between workers and external stakeholders in the day-to-day business activities. The integration of email with various business applications is a vital part of increasing process efficiencies and improving work quality.

The existing Novell Groupwise system had reached end-of-life with outdated hardware and out-of-maintenance support. The technology presented numerous limitations and risks for several applications including Identity Management and the Attorney General’s essential case management system, ProLaw, which handles all billing and is the case repository. Licensing and mobility issues also needed to be addressed.

Eighteen locations statewide, including six offices of the Attorney General, were tasked for the conversion and migrations. A separate Disaster Recovery site and the Hawkins Data Center, which provides operational services to the Department and over 800 local criminal justice agencies throughout California, required high availability, fault tolerances, and DR capability.

The critically short timeframe required for migrations and implementation presented greater challenges than product selection. After nearly five years of research, Adrian Farley, the new CIO, and Assistant Bureau Chief Chris Chambers developed a concrete plan to fast-track the user migration. However, the 3-month project plan appeared an insurmountable challenge for RFO-responding vendor consultants.



“ENS-Inc put together a really decisive plan that met the department’s needs and also assisted in calming nerves. They were able to say, ‘This is how we will do it,’ in a very articulate manner. ‘This is when we will do it, and this is why we will make your deadline at this cost.’”

Chris Chambers, Assistant Bureau Chief

Within the DOJ RFO and after extensive market research and discussions, ENS-Inc was selected as the consulting partner for the project for reasons which included:

  • Substantial experience with the California Technology Agency and multiple government projects
  • Understanding of pain points and the need for expedience
  • Prior experience with one of the key applications: Identity Management (IDM)
  • A decisive plan the met the departments needs
  • An experienced team that interfaced well with the DOJ team

“Risk factors were mitigated,” stated Chris Chambers. “A lot talked to what we needed to have done. The integration pieces were very big. The time to deliver was very big. The stability of design and ability to factor in the disaster recovery pieces, the high availability pieces, and failover pieces not in place before.”

ENS-Inc worked with the DOJ to prepare a high level assessment, design, and migration from Novell Groupwise to Microsoft Exchange.

VMware vSphere 5.1 was deployed on HP C7000 blade servers for the virtual environment, which in combination with Exchange, would support the high availability, fault tolerances, and disaster recovery requirements, as well as enabling a virtualized Archive solution.

The selected Microsoft Exchange solution is a market leader and is currently used by most California agencies. This solution offered the necessary business application integration, especially for critical applications including ProLaw, SharePoint, and Identity Management.

Feature-rich Microsoft Exchange integrates with Microsoft Lync to complete the instant messaging and unified communications platform. Phone integration and mobility issues are supported as the Department moves towards BYOD policies and structure.

Substantial cost savings are also realized with the improved licensing agreement with Microsoft.


Solution Process

Teamwork, communication, and strong project management were keys to an aggressive timeframe for completion and a successful outcome for the project. Outstanding HP vendor support resulted in a speedy installation of the HP C7000 servers. 6000 mailboxes were migrated to Exchange in a three-month period.

This timely completion avoided costly licensing renewal fees for the outgoing system. The high quality and availability of ENS-Inc personnel resources (architect, engineers, programmers, project manager, etc.) combined with a strong DOJ team, executive sponsorship and support, and project management excellence laid the groundwork for teamwork precision and accomplishment.

“Through ENS’s diligent planning efforts, and highly efficient project management and technical team, DOJ was able to pull off what I considered impossible: a project that should have been near a year in 3 months… and not only in 3 months but 3 months successfully with happy customers.”

Chris Chambers, Assistant Bureau Chief

Working as a team with the DOJ staff, ENS-Inc designed the modification of the desktops to remove the Groupwise client and install on the network, then trained the DOJ staff on how to deploy while ENS-Inc provided 3rd tier support, working side-by-side and hands-on as necessary.

The ENS-Inc team provided Train-the-Trainer training, design documentation, functional specifications, and administrative “how-to” guides. ENS-Inc post-migration support was made available throughout the entire project.

The DOJ established a dedicated training group to ensure all end-users were trained. The Department, strongly committed to the project, also facilitated substantial communication and direction.

The Project Management process was integral to success. Regular status meetings were held weekly with daily checkpoints during rollout, sometimes twice daily checkpoints. The PMs managed ongoing risk assessment, risk and issue management, requirements validation, and facilitated targeted meetings for specific subjects for knowledge transfer, training, and for network review.


This project was completed within a very aggressive three-month time frame, saving the DOJ substantial costs. Beyond cost considerations, outstanding results enable the DOJ to move forward with a unified communications system without limitation or risk to mission-critical applications integration.

The combination of the virtual infrastructure with Microsoft Exchange provides high availability and disaster recovery which the DOJ did not have before.

Benefits include:

  • High availability – 100% uptime
  • Disaster recovery solution
  • Fault tolerances enable disaster recovery capability
  • Unified communications
  • Integrated messaging with email
  • Ability to use more diverse mobile plans
  • Ability to integrate with business-required applications
  • Cost savings due to reduced licensing and operational expenses
  • Substantial reductions in SAN requirements and related equipment expenses

“With tight timelines and a requirement for zero-downtime, ENS was a critical partner in the Department of Justice’s successful migration from GroupWise to Exchange”

Adrian Farley, CIO, California Department of Justice

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