With innovation comes choice, and confusion!
There are several options to migrate data from on-premises file shares and hard drives.
The modern practices for file management in the cloud are as follows:
- Personal files, like those stored in someone's H:\ (home) or hard drive, migrate to OneDrive for Business
- Workgroup or organizational files, when possible, go to SharePoint.
- Any nested applications residing on current SMB file shares (files that link to other files on the share) can migrate to Azure Files.
- an .xls sheet that has a link / macro pointing to another file
- an Access database
Since a fair amount of storage is already paid for with SharePoint (E3 license), and Azure Files will incur additional cost per byte, it's SharePoint where you can and Azure Files where you must.
SharePoint storage breaks down as follows:
- By turning on a tenant with a license, you start with 1TB shared storage.
- Then for every licensed user, you add 10GB of storage. This also overlaps with Microsoft Teams, as the files are stored on an underlying SharePoint sites. This doesn't include One Drive for Business. Any licensed SPO user has ODFB as well (1TB / user but can be increased to 5TB per user with no cost). ODFB storage is not aggregated/shared.
Moving files from SMB to SharePoint is accomplished with a migration tool. We have found https://sharegate.com/blog/prepare-file-share-migration-to-sharepoint to be cost-effective and efficient. But recently, Microsoft acquired Mover (http://mover.io), which is now free for O365 customers moving data to SharePoint Online/ODFB. Even more cost effective!
Teams adds another choice for sharing workgroup / organizational files. One IT Manager of a 30,000 user firm summarized the best practices well: “OneDrive is for my personal data, and if I leave, what happens to my data doesn't matter to the organization. Teams is where you store collaborative data, and for us, SharePoint is about one-to-many communications, like our intranet, and is highly governed.” Additional best practices from customers are posted at: https://blog.enablingtechcorp.com/summarizing-enablings-2019-executive-summit
What to use when may become simple again one day, but until then, free to ask us about anything.
You can find out more information concerning cloud cost containment and cloud migration strategies: Azure Cost Containment Webinar on December 12th at 2pm ET. Hope to see you there!