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Friday, May 13, 2011

Can I get there from here?

Google has Google accounts and then there are Google Apps accounts and they are neither the same thing nor interchangeable.

Why this is important is that in the bigger scheme of things as I try to cut costs, improve the time it takes to keep up with things and share whatever with whomever, I need to streamline some of the existing mechanisms and connectivity.

The email address I have used since signing up with Google GMail became the anchor point for everything I did and necessary to my use of Google facilities….. until Google Apps came along.

On the other hand, my Webdoms existence has been there several decades and I have a considerable investment in it and did not want to just drop it. I did need to cut the costs in money and time to sustain it and decided that I could transpose it all, fairly intact, into Google Apps…. or so I thought.

The short of it is that I created a free Google Apps account, assigned it to Webdoms, set my email and other Webdoms connected stuff to port or be forwarded to the GApps platform I created and began dismantling it on the old 1and1.com servers.

The hitch in this get-along is that Google cannot just merge two accounts and particularly not a Google account and a Google Apps account.

Complicating this is this blog, created under my original Google account and my Cell phone (Android) id which was initially also setup under my original Google Account.

To switch the phone, I had to basically clear it and reinitiate it from scratch on my webdoms id setup on GApps. This meant reinstalling all my phone apps, too, which was no small task in itself.

A bigger problem was, and still is, that those things that were tied to my old id on my phone, cannot be connected to by my new id on the same phone.

An example is Google latitude which shows where I am via the built in GPSA  hardware.  Once my Phone became a part of my Webdoms identity, it could not update the places that had previously been tied to it.

Simply put, the “Where Am I?” gadget could only show my old phone id location in this blog and I could not get my Webdoms phone location into the blog gadget in this blog.

I discovered, today, that I could move a blog between accounts with a little Penn and Teller slight of hand and now, it is administrated by my GApps Webdoms id instead of my old Gmail id.

It has taken weeks to do the following:

  • Shift all my email to my GApps Webdoms identity ( over 800 mbytes)
  • Shift all my RVing content to GApps docs, calendar, contacts, etc.
  • Graduate my profile information, blogging following, stats, etc. to the webdoms. GApps id
  • Make my phone a part of my Webdoms GApps identity instead of my old Gmail id.
  • Configure Outlook 2010 to interface IMAP to my new GApps mail, calendar and contacts and completely rebuild my Webdoms folders and rules in it to match. It was all previously running on a MS Exchange server on 1and1.com.
  • Engage the Sprint/Google Voice integration option so that all my voicemail, calling, ringing, etc. is handled through Google Voice instead of Sprint.

This has taken weeks of preparation and planning to be sure I could do everything I wanted before I stated actually changing things.  I really could not afford to find myself with one foot on the boat and one on the dock and then see the boat was gonna sink.

At this point, there are just a few loose ends but everything is now on the Google Apps platform under my Webdoms identity and I am very happy with the results.

It cut about $50/month of ongoing expense and was worth the struggle it took to make it happen. I have 6 gigabytes more of free email space plus all the GApps docs space I will probably ever need, for free.

More about some of these details at a later time. I am also working towards dramatically changing the way this blog works, too, and hopefully, it will make it much easier for followers with only limited interests in some of the topics I post, like PC stuff, RVing trip planning, health tips, etc. … I don’t have all the separate topics locked in just yet and suggestions are certainly welcome.

The idea will be to have the blog’s starting page be the root for about 6 individual blogs on the various topical areas of interest.

Meanwhile, it’s getting late so….

ttfn

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