Migration << >>

Establishing Naming Conventions

If your existing system doesn't have naming conventions, consider establishing conventions before moving to Microsoft Exchange Server, especially for directory names, display names, given names, last names, and aliases.

The directory name is also known as the common name. It is used to create the unique full directory name of a mailbox. This name is visible only in the Administrator program. By default, the directory name is the same as the alias name, with the exception that it can't contain spaces.

The following table lists common conventions for directory names.

Directory Name Example
Alias TJohnston
Employee number 72345
Network user ID or account name KIRMSE

Important    Since directory names can't be changed, you should determine the convention before creating mailboxes.

The display name appears in the Address Book, and you can change it any time. The display name might confuse users who are accustomed to seeing abbreviated names. It is best to change the display name convention during migration.

Important    Migrated messages use the display names of the sender and recipients. If you change the display name during migration, replies to migrated mail may not associate the old display name with the new display name and address.

If you use the old naming convention for custom recipients and a new naming convention for the mailboxes, replies to migrated messages are delivered, but display names may be harder to find. For example, if you are switching the display name convention from "Last, First" to "First Last," senders may have to search the list twice to find the recipient.

The following table lists common conventions for display names.

Display Name Example
<First Name> <Last Name> John Smith
<Last Name>, <First Name> Smith, John
<First Name> <Middle initial> <Last Name> John Q. Smith

By default, the first name and last name are used to create X.400 e-mail addresses. Your naming convention should state whether nicknames should be listed as the first name or as the display name. You also need to consider how to treat hyphenated and duplicate display names.

By default, the alias is used to create SMTP (Internet) and Microsoft Mail e-mail addresses. The alias is visible to the public and can contain spaces, unlike the directory name. To reduce confusion later, consider making this name unique in the Recipients container.

The following table lists common conventions for alias names.

Alias Name Example
<First Initial> <Last Name> JSmith
<First Initial>(space)<Last Name> J Smith
<Last Name> <First Initial> SmithJ

Each source extractor has a default method for mapping existing names to new Microsoft Exchange Server display and directory names. You may want to check the default mapping of your source extractor. You can modify the extracted data or the new mailboxes. For more information about how the source extractor works with your existing system, see the chapter pertaining to your existing system later in this guide.