Home‎ > ‎


Frequently Asked Questions and Answers

Gmail | Calendar | Contacts | Mail Archiving


What will migrate over from my Outlook mailbox to my Google account?

We will only migrate data associated with your primary email account. This includes email messages, including attachments, in your inbox, sent items and drafts folders, as well as other folders you have created. 

Will my Outlook folders migrate over from my Outlook mailbox to my Google account?

Google Gmail uses labels, similar to folders, to organize emails. The migration will convert your existing Outlook folder structure to labels, truncating folder names longer than 225 characters. Data migrated includes email messages, including attachments, in your inbox, sent items and drafts folders, as well as other folders you have created.

Will my .pst files migrate to Gmail?

No, .pst files will not migrate to Gmail. If you sync Gmail to Outlook, and have stored your .pst files on your local drive or a network drive, you can continue to access that data through the Outlook interface. If you want to move your .pst files to Gmail, use the G Suite migration for Microsoft Outlook tool to do so.

Will I lose access to Outlook or my archived email? Do I need to migrate my .pst files (archived emails) to Gmail right way?

You will be able to use the Outlook client and use it to access your archived email indefinitely. While the Microsoft Exchange servers will be decommissioned by April 30, 2018, your Outlook client will remain on your desktop. If you have stored .pst files on your local drive or a network drive, you will be able to access that data using your Outlook client and have the option to migrate that data to Gmail, slowly over time, when you're ready.

Will my Outlook rules migrate over from my Outlook mailbox to my Google account?

Mail-handling rules will not migrate. If you use rules to manage your email you can re-create their equivalent, Filters, in Gmail. For details, see Create rules to filter your emails.

Will my Outbox folder in Outlook migrate over to my Gmail mailbox?

No, as your mail Outbox folder is not migrated, please ensure any messages there (usually from drafting offline) are sent.

Will my Deleted folder in Outlook migrate over to my Gmail mailbox?

No, as your mail deleted folder is not migrated, please ensure any messages there are removed.

How much space do I have for mail messages? 

Accounts will have either 30 gigabytes (GB) of storage or will be unlimited. Each agency will determine storage needs for users.

What happens if I reach my mailbox limit?

If you have a 30 GB mailbox and you reach the limit you should work with your agency to change to an unlimited mailbox. Note: There are additional costs associated with the unlimited mailbox. 

I synced my Gmail to Outlook and received a message stating that my mailbox is full.

If you have an unlimited mailbox in Google, please refer to the following link for instructions on how to increase the size of your local mailbox. https://support.google.com/a/users/answer/184126

Is there a size limitation for file attachments in Gmail?

Yes. When you're attaching files from your computer, you can only attach files up to 25 megabytes (MB) in size. 

Is there a type limitation for file attachments in Gmail?

Yes. To help prevent viruses, Gmail won't accept file attachments that are executable files (.exe). 

Is there a limit to the number of recipients in an email?

Yes; 2,000 recipients (500 external). See this guide for more information on Gmail sending limits.

How do I prevent messages from specific senders from being tagged as spam?

If messages from a sender outside your domain are being incorrectly tagged as spam, you can prevent this from happening by creating an email filter using the Never send it to Spam option:
  • In Gmail, click Settings > Filters > Create a new filter.
  • Enter the person's address in the From field, and then click Next Step.
  • Select Never send it to spam, and then click Create Filter.
How long do messages remain in my Spam folder?

Messages remain in the Spam folder for 30 days. After that, Gmail permanently deletes them. 

How do I move my compose window around if I don’t want it in the bottom right corner?

Hold the Shift key down and click Compose. 

Will my JAWS screen reader work in Gmail?

Based on feedback from agencies, JAWS with Outlook configured to connect to Gmail is the best option. Outlook is an available client for Gmail. To sync Gmail with Outlook, use G Suite Sync for Microsoft Outlook

When I try to log in to Gmail in Chrome from home, I receive a message that the connection is not private. What should I do?

Connect via virtual private network (VPN) or use Internet Explorer to access Google. Then select Gmail and log in.

How is email restored from HMA into Gmail?
Restoring email from HMA works differently than it did in Outlook. In Gmail, the restored email will show as a “new” message and appear at the top of your inbox as any new email would. 
Will encryption be turned on in Gmail by default?
Data residing in Gmail is encrypted at rest but is not encrypted in a manner that will protect someone with access to the account from reading messages. To protect sensitive data, encryption must be enabled by using the add-on product called Virtru. Virtru email encryption is $7.96 per user per mailbox.
Who can read encrypted email messages?
Inside the Gmail client, only the sender and the recipients can view an encrypted email using Virtru. 
Is Tempus Nova able to read COV-encrypted email messages?
No. If messages are encrypted with Virtru, Tempus Nova members are not able to read the contents of the message. They can, however, see the meta data, including subject, sender and recipients of an encrypted email in the Virtru dashboard.
Will email data loss prevention (EDLP) be turned on in Gmail by default?
No, EDLP is not enabled by default. While EDLP is included in the cost of the unlimited storage mailbox option, you must inform VITA of what your EDLP requirements are so they can be configured for your agency. Refer to the pre-defined content filters listed here:  https://support.google.com/a/answer/7047475.
How will shared mailboxes be affected by the Google transition?
Shared mailboxes will be migrated as user accounts with members delegated to access those accounts.
NOTE: If an end user has read-only access to a shared mailbox in Microsoft Exchange, they will not have any access / permissions once transitioned to Google. To obtain access to a shared mailbox after transition, a VCCC ticket must be submitted requesting access. A proactive approach is to grant any end user with read-only access full permissions to the shared mailbox prior to the transition.
I hear there is a 25-member limit on collaboration inboxes - is that correct? What will happen to shared email boxes at migration if they have more than 25 members?

There is a 25-member delegation limit to any user account. If a shared mailbox needs more than 25 members, it could be configured as a Group in Google to avoid membership limits.

Can I send from a shared mailbox as the mailbox name instead of "on behalf of" the mailbox?
Yes, contact the VCCC to request being able to "send as" the mailbox name. Indicate the name of the mailbox that users want to send as, and include the list of users who require the send as permission.
For example: Please assign "send as" permissions to the "example@vita.virginia.gov" shared mailbox to the following users: 

If a shared mailbox is converted to a Google Group, what happens to data in that mailbox?

Data will not be migrated to Google Groups from shared mailboxes. It is recommended that owners put this mailbox data in a .pst file to ingest into Google for ongoing access.

If a shared mailbox is moved to a Google Group, will the associated calendar move with it? 

Google groups do not have calendars associated with them. The recommendation is to rebuild the calendar in Google as a shared calendar and share it out appropriately. This does require one user account to "own" the calendar, but multiple owners can be added afterwards.
If a shared mailbox is converted to a Google Group, but then it is decided that it does not meet needs, can the Google Group be converted back to a shared mailbox?
Yes, but data will not be migrated.
How do I convert a shared mailbox to a collaborative inbox?
How do I manage agency distribution lists that I own?
You can manage distribution lists using the COV Account Center. See: Managing resources
My distribution lists are shown in Google Groups. Can I add and delete members via Google?
No, you cannot manage distribution lists in Google. If you make changes in Google, they will be overwritten when it syncs with Active Directory. Distribution list information resides in Active Directory. Changes must be made using COV Account Center (also known as Forefront Identity Manager). See: Managing resources
If I am a member of a distribution list, and I send a message to that list, will I receive the email?
No, you will not receive the email, but a copy will be in your Sent mail.
How do I get named as an owner of an existing distribution list?
A ticket should be opened with the VCCC naming who should be added as owners. This request must have AITR or ISO approval. See: Managing resources
Will end users be able to create their own collaborative inboxes?

No, end users cannot create their own collaborative inboxes. 

How do I create a shortcut on my desktop to Gmail?
  • Log into Gmail
  • In the Chrome browser, click on 3-dot icon in the upper right of screen
  • In drop-down menu, hover cursor over "More tools"
  • Select "Add to desktop" from side menu
How do I make "Contact us" or "Send to" links launch Gmail instead of Outlook?

My agency has an application that uses POP3 for sending/receiving email. How do I integrate this with Gmail?

Will data in public folders be migrated to G Suite?

Data from public folders was not migrated to G Suite. It is important to note that public folders as a service will no longer be available. Your data will be accessible through the legacy version of Outlook until April 30.

What should I do with my public folder data?

See this chart of options on how to handle public folder data.

Can I forward my Gmail to another address?

Yes, but because of security policy (SEC-501 MP-1-COV(5)) it requires agency head approval. Agencies must maintain the documented approval on file at the agency. The agency's information security officer should open a ticket with the VITA Customer Care Center to have the "Forwarding and POP/IMAP" tab installed in Gmail. The ticket must include the agency head's documented approval. Once the tab has been installed, forwarding can be set up by following these directions: Automatically forward Gmail messages to another account

Does VITA have service level agreements for messaging services?

Please see "SLAs" for a table of service level agreements and response times.

How do I request access to an employee's account who has left state service or is on extended leave?

How many people can have access to a disabled email account?

Up to 24 people can have access.

What happens to the Google license when an email account is disabled?

Licenses remain in effect on a disabled account. Licenses are only fully removed when an account is fully deleted.

My employee’s email account was already deprovisioned. Can I still request access to the mailbox?

Delegating access to an account can be done up to 90 days after an account has been deprovisioned. 


What coexistence issues should I expect until the final roll out in March?

Cancelled Events
  • Exchange calendar events, cancelled by event owner in Exchange (non-Pilot user), remain on Pilot User Google Apps calendar
  • Cancelled event created in Google Calendar, remain on Exchange calendar
  • One or more people do not receive a cancellation notice when a Google calendar event is deleted

Proposed Time Change
  • Exchange user proposes a time change to a scheduled event created by Google Apps User. Google Apps user is unable to accept proposed new time

Changed Event
  • Exchange User Updates a Calendar event, Google Apps User receives update but a duplicate event is created on Google Calendar.

Re-occurring Events
  • If an event is changed in Exchange then migrated over, then the user changes the event in Google, it does create the new event but in some instances it does not remove the old event so the user has two events.

Accept with Comments
  • If a Exchange user chooses 'Respond / accepts with comments' to a Google event invitation, the comments are only visible in the message subject line in the inbox. They aren't visible from Event Details.

My calendar icon is missing, what do I do?

Open Gmail in Chrome, a app launcher icon will appear to the top-right of the page. Click the launcher and click More at the bottom of the list. Click Even more from Google on the bottom of that list. Scroll to the bottom of the page and click on Calendar. Your Calendar will open and click on the app launcher again. Add the Calendar shortcut once it asks you.

Can I book conference rooms and resources using Google Calendar?

Yes, to add a meeting room or other resource to an event:

  1. Sign in to your calendar and open the event
  2. If this is a new meeting, click a time in your calendar, and then click Edit event.
  3. If this is an existing meeting, click the name of the meeting in your calendar.
  4. On the right side of the event where you add guests, click the Rooms, etc. link
  5. Scroll through the list of resources to find the one you want. Or, start typing he name of the resource in the Filter room text box until the desired resource appears in the list. If you can't remember the full resource name, just enter any part of the name.
  6. Click Add next to the desired resource.
  7. The resource is added to the Where section in the Event details tab, and to the participants list in the Find a time tab. It is also listed in the Guests list.
  8. If you need to remove a resource you just added, find the resource in the Guests list and click the X beside it.
  9. Click Save.

Can I see a list of attendees who have accepted my invitation?

Yes, open the event details to see who has accepted your invitation.

Is there a limit to the number of people who can access a calendar?

No. You can share calendar access to an unlimited number of people.

Can I book multiple rooms at once?

Yes, you can book more than one room or resource for your event invitation.

Can I invite attendees from outside of my organization's domain?

Yes, you can send meeting invitations to any email address.

Can I invite a distribution list from our directory to a meeting?

Yes, you can invite any mailing list (group) in our corporate directory to a meeting. Each member of the group will receive an email invitation. Note, however, that the email invitation won't show all the members of the group. Also, the group members will appear in the invitation on each attendee's calendar only if you have permission to view the group's member list.

You can invite a Google Group to your event instead of inviting people one by one. Just follow the steps above and add the email address for the group. Learn more about inviting groups to your event.

What level of access do others have to my calendar?

By default, your calendar is shared with everyone in your domain, and they can see your calendar's free/busy information only. However, you can turn off calendar sharing.

If you share your calendar with everyone at your domain, you can specify whether they can see only free/busy information or all event details. You can also share your calendar with specific people and give them one of the following levels of access:

See free/busy information only

See all event details

Make changes to your calendar

Make changes and share your calendar with others - Make sure not to choose this option unless you specifically want this option.

If I create a calendar, can I remove it from my account and make it a shared calendar? Can I attach it to someone else's calendar?

To share duties for calendar administration, simply add additional owners of the calendar.


Will all of my contacts be available on Google Contacts?

Yes, all personal contacts in Outlook will be available in Google Contacts. If you are missing a contact, please reference Outlook and add the contact in your Google Contacts. For details on adding contacts and groups, see G Suite Learning Center.

Will my personal distribution lists in Outlook be migrated to Google Contacts?

No, all personal distribution lists will not migrate. You will still have access to all your personal distribution lists on Outlook to view. For details on adding contacts and groups, see G Suite Learning Center

Duplicate contacts

Scenario: A contact shows a vadoc.cov and a vadoc.virginia.gov email address. 

In your personal contacts, you may notice some legacy exchange email addresses you had listed in your Exchange contacts. These contacts may include email addresses with the "cov" or "local" domain names. You should remove these email addresses from your contacts if you do not wish to see them. See Removing contacts

If I add an external user to a distribution list in the COV Domain will it copy over as a contact for Google?

No, this will not create a contact in the directory for users to see. Anyone who has access to see the member list of that group can see the group members, but this does not add any contacts to the domain.

Mail Archiving

After the migration to Google, can I continue to use the hosted mail archiving (HMA) service?

The HMA service is not being decommissioned at this time. The data that is currently in there from before your G Suite go-live date is still there and still accessible to you via the standard browser login.

However, once you are migrated to Google, mail is not necessarily archived to HMA automatically. There are two options that an agency can choose from:
  1. Connect HMA to Gmail and continue to journal emails into it.
  2. Stop sending new emails to HMA and use it only for reference until the data meets its retention policy and is deleted.
Please note:
  • There is a charge for both options.
  • This is a holistic agency decision. We are unable to accommodate partial agencies.
  • There is not a migration path between HMA to Google Vault.
  • Agencies will indicate their choice of HMA use on the Google configuration spreadsheet.

VITA's recommendation is option two above and use Google Vault for all data once the agency is migrated to Google. As agency use of HMA declines it will become more expensive.

Some of my emails are missing from HMA. Do they still exist?

Emails were not automatically sent to HMA from Friday, March 23 at 5 p.m. to Tuesday, April 3 at 8 a.m. They were sent to the users' Gmail accounts during this period. All emails during the transition period were stored in Gmail unless a user intentionally deleted mail from Gmail Trash and had a 30 gigabyte (GB) mailbox. Items deleted by the user are in Gmail Vault as long as the user has an unlimited mailbox. If the user deleted the emails and has a 30GB mailbox, the emails were not stored. VITA is working to copy that data from Gmail Vault to HMA and will keep agenices informed as to when this will be done. In the meantime, please use both email containers (HMA and Google Vault) for archives searches. 

What is Google Vault?

Google Vault lets you retain, archive, search and export email. Your Trash folder is your Vault and is essentially your personal archive. Read more about Google Vault.

How do I name someone a Vault administrator at my agency?

Make this request using the COV Account Request form, Section 4. It will require ISO approval.

If I delete email from my Trash folder, can I recover it?

If you delete messages in Trash, the deleted messages will not be recoverable by you. However, the messages will still be recoverable and under the same hold or retention rule within Vault. 

What is the retention policy for Google Vault? Is it set up at the enterprise level or different for every agency?

Retention for Vault is set at the agency level. The settings for each agency are passed on to VITA from the Google configuration spreadsheet you filled out with your agency needs.

Are Google domain administrators also Google Vault administrators?

Domain administrators are known as "Super Users." Our super users are Tempus Nova staff, who can see Vault data.

When I create a "matter" in Google Vault, who can I share it with?

You can share a matter with any other Vault administrator who has access to matters in your agency.

Can HMA customers restore messages from the HMA archive back to their Google mailbox?

Yes, users who subscribe to the HMA service are able to restore messages in the HMA archive to their Google mailbox. From the HMA interface simply highlight the message you want to restore. Right mouse click and select "restore to mailbox." Your message will show in your Google mailbox within a business day and will appear in your Google email list on the date it was originally sent (not the date that you restore it).

If I restore a message from HMA (Veritas Archive.Cloud) to my Gmail mailbox, and my Gmail mailbox has Vault with a retention of seven years, what date does Vault choose to base the retention on? The date of the original email or the date the email was restored to Gmail?

It will be based on the date the original message was actually sent.

Mobile Device Management

How do we set up an approval workflow for mobile device management (MDM)?

For a user to gain access to Google MDM, a request must be made through the COV Account Center. The form has a built-in workflow that includes agency approval before it is processed.

Will contacts be downloaded to my mobile device with the Google mobile device management app?

For Apple iOS - Yes, contacts will sync to the native contacts if the user so chooses.

For Android - Yes, contacts will sync to the work contacts folder.

What if I forget my password on my mobile device?

If you forget your password or PIN and lock yourself out of your phone, the help desk can factory reset your phone remotely. For iPhone users, once the phone has been reset you will need to use iTunes to recover the phone. Since iTunes requires administrator privileges and most users do not have this on their COV-issued device, your personal iTunes application will work to get your COV-issued phone back online. Android users will follow the standard phone setup procedures as displayed after the phone has been reset.

How do I read encrypted messages on my mobile device?

If you receive an encrypted email, you are presented with the option to choose to open it with your Google account or a web browser. Choose web browser. This will enable you to read and reply using Virtru.

Other Google Apps

Why can't I use Google Drive?

Google Drive is not part of the email service offering and does not meet commonwealth least privilege requirements in the current Gmail configuration. Users may see Google Drive as enabled in the case that an agency has opted in for the calendaring attachments feature. Drive may not be used for anything except calendar attachments. VITA is investigating methods to enable Google Drive for future use.

Where can I learn about Google Groups?

Visit Google Groups, Resource Calendars and Share Accounts. Also see: Managing resources

Can I use audio and video features with Google Hangouts and Meet?

Audio and video capture have been enabled for use with Google Hangouts and Meet using Chrome. If your PC does not have a camera, but you have Google Hangouts on your work-approved smartphone, you can initiate the meeting on the phone. Then, mute the sound on your phone, and join the meeting on your PC. This workaround is recommended for small groups only.

What browsers are compatible with Google Hangouts?

Hangouts works with the current version and one previous major release of the browsers listed below.
On Internet Explorer and Safari, download and install the latest version of the Hangouts plugin.

Decommissioning of Exchange

When will the Exchange server be turned off?

The Exchange server will be turned off on April 26. IronPort will be turned off on April 24.

Will all applications dependent on Exchange be affected by the decommissioning on April 26?

Sending and receiving email via Exchange will not be available after April 26.
The following services/applications will be available until April 30. They will not be available after April 30.
  • Lync/Skype
  • Public folders
  • RightFax
What other messaging services are affected by the Microsoft Exchange shutdown and are there new services to replace them? 


Old service offering

New service offering

Office Communications server (Lync/Skype)

Google Hangouts

Enterprise handheld services

Google mobile device management

Fax from mailbox service (RightFax)   


Instant messaging archiving


Email data loss prevention


PKI Encryption


Secure email service


Will Skype/Lync be removed from devices?

Yes, the application will be removed.

Will a copy of the Exchange contents be kept somewhere to be accessed as an archive?

Yes, but it will only be available for Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests and records retention.

Will Exchange profiles be automatically removed from end users' Outlook client?

This has yet to be determined.

There is a backlog of tickets from the Google transition addressing individual user issues, distribution lists, shared mailboxes and other shared resources. Will the shutdown of Exchange affect these tickets?

No, they will continue to be worked.

G Suite and related messaging services, including email, are part of the commonwealth’s new information technology infrastructure services provided by the Virginia Information Technologies Agency (VITA).