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GMail as replacement for Exchange

Does anyone have any experience or information about this?

I'm running an on-premises Exchange server for a medium size church.  I'd like to be rid of the worry about hardware failure.

Gmail seems an attractive alternative, but I don't know what would substitute for my Global Address List (including Global Distribution Groups).  My son says that if GMail is good enough for Ford Motor Company it should  be good enough for me.  I just don't know what functionality I might lose.

Any and all thoughts on the matter most welcome.

Ron Hicks
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Ronald Hicks
Asked:
Ronald Hicks
2 Solutions
 
Adam BrownSr Solutions ArchitectCommented:
Functionality you'll lose:
1. The vast majority of what you can do with Gmail Apps for Business can only be done through the Web or with third party tools and apps. Using it with Outlook will keep you from being able to do organizational and shared calendaring the way you probably do it with Exchange. The web version of Apps for Business has fairly simple contact list management, but this doesn't translate over to Outlook well, since you have to use IMAP and POP3 to connect to their services.
2. Google does not have pricing for non-profits yet. You would basically be paying 50 bucks per year per user to use all of the features it has.
3. Usability is a little screwy in my opinion. Others may have a different opinion, but I have not had a good experience with GMail's business solution.

You should honestly consider looking at Office 365 for Non-Profits. If you use an E1 license, Microsoft will verify non-profit status and wave the subscription fees as a donation for taxes. http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/non-profit/compare-office-365-for-nonprofits-plans-FX104081605.aspx has info on that. The functionality will be similar to what you have now or better, since you can have Lync, Sharepoint, and OneDrive at the same time. Migration is usually fairly easy for smaller organizations, (not sure what you would consider a medium sized church).
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suriyaehnopCommented:
I have one of my subsidiary left Exchange for GMAIL reason no worry for hardware, 25GB mailbox size. From my experiance working with vendor is they don't really have a global address structure same as Exchange.

No single sign on,  if you have an AD, you have to sign on 2 times, 1st for log on to PC and 2nd sign on to GMAIL.

There are highly network utilization to network to internet due to email between internal user still flow to internet compare to Exchange in premise.

Of course GMAIL has provide you alot if apps
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Ronald HicksAuthor Commented:
Thanks!  Especially for the lead to Office365.
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