Migrating away from Sun Identity Manager? If only it were that simple.

Well, we can tell you with no uncertainty that regardless of what a vendor or implementation partner has stated that there is no cut and dry methodology for “migrating” from Sun IdM to any of the other major IdM products.
In all fairness, at IDMWorks, we don’t have the magic migration tool, but we do have the expertise to make your transition to a new IdM product a success. Feel free to reach out to us to and let us show you what we can do to smooth the process. As our front page says, “Get to know Peace of Mind”.

Here at IDMWorks we get asked time and again to migrate from Sun Identity Manager to a number of products including Oracle, Novell, IBM, and CA Identity Manager.

We can tell you with no uncertainty that regardless of what a vendor or implementation partner has stated that there is no cut and dry methodology for “migrating” from Sun IdM to any of the other major IdM products.

As of now, there simply is no magic tool that you can use to export a Sun IdM environment into another product.  A vendor may be able to write a tool or two to migrate some of the important pieces of Sun IdM over, like resources, users, or basic meta-data that is common to all Sun IdM implementations (we speak from having done so a few times now ourselves) but as Identity Management is never a simple plug and play right out of the box, with no customization, it is not and cannot be done that simply.

So if you have a plain vanilla out-of-the-box implementation of Sun IdM, you might be in luck 🙂 . If you’re like every Sun IdM implementation that IDMWorks has implemented, you have custom forms and workflows that have been written to facilitate your company’s processes for on-boarding, requests, off-boarding, approvals, etc.

The majority of these customizations are written in XPRESS.   XPRESS, unfortunately, is a proprietary XML language that was created expressly for the Waveset IdM product, which was purchased by Sun Microsystems, which was in turn purchased further down the road (and is being “phased out” under the name Oracle Waveset) by Oracle.  Each of the XPRESS forms and workflows is useless to another product.  Even if somehow translated they would be awkward at best to integrate into most other products as the product architecture and internal logic are very different.

The method many of our customers are taking to migrate is to document each process and configuration and create a migration plan to slowly bring up the new product solution to replace the functionality they currently have.  In other words, start from scratch using your original requirements and tools.  The key to success there is to have awesome, thorough, well planned and written documentation! Something we push VERY hard on our customer base here at IDMWorks.

With some luck (and a good vendor/partner) you have documented lessons learned from your original IdM implementation that you can use to expedite the new project and avoid some of the pitfalls that may have occurred the first time. The first and most important step to moving from one IdM platform to another is coming up with a rock solid migration plan that makes the transition as smooth as possible.

In all fairness, at IDMWorks, we don’t have the magic migration tool, but we do have the expertise to make your transition to a new IdM product a success.  Feel free to reach out to us to and let us show you what we can do to smooth the process.  As our front page says, “Get to know Peace of Mind”.