Migrating from Unity to Unity Connection – Part 3

My last two posts dealt directly with the COBRAS tool, an extremely powerful backup and restore utility which is mainly object orientated. Since it stores all information in a MDB format, there is another utility which will allow you to edit certain parameters before you do your restore.

For instance, let’s say that a customer in moving from a Unity Domino environment to Unity Connection in which has integration into Active Directory and the alias’s for all subscribers are completely different. However, you still want to move all the related information over from the Unity Domino environment and over writes the subscribers just imported and sync from Active Directory. The question is: how this can be accomplished?

Another aspect to COBRAS is something called the COBRAS Data Viewer. With this utility one can open the MDB related to the Unity database or DoH (Directory Object Hierarchy) and make necessary changes to ensure a smooth import. In the case above where one alias is first initial and last name in the domino directory and the other way around in Active Directory, the COBRAS Data Viewer tool can easily provide this transition.

As a precaution, make sure you make a backup copy of the MDB file before executing any Data Viewer routines since all changes are FINAL. If you make a mistake and need to back out; simply delete the MDB file you made a mistake on and copy the backup copy to the working directory and start over. This is the most preferred method and highly recommended by Cisco.

To begin, run the utility after installing and go to File>Open and browse for the related MDB file from your working directory. The file name should be UnityDBData_Backup_Date_Time.MDB. Note the Date will be in the format of YYMMDD and the time will be in the format of HH_MM_MS. So if I ran the backup process on April 4, 2010 at 9:30:12am the file name would look like UnityDBData_Backup_20100704_09_30_12.mdb.

Once the file is open it should appear very close to the illustration above which displays the current subscribers. Now you need to choose Edit>Export users in backup to CSV option. This will dump all the subscribers in the MDB file into a CSV which contains four columns:


You will have to add either the new alias and or extension for each subscriber listed using your favorite CSV file editor (my preference is Microsoft Excel). Once the file has been successfully edited, you are ready to apply the changes.

The changes will be applied to the MDB backup files. Make sure you back up the original file by simply copying it to another location. Once the changes are applied to the UnityDBData_Backup MDB file, it cannot be undone.

Next go to Edit>Remap subscriber alias or extension, browse for the CSV file you just finished making the changes to and then hit the apply button. COBRAS will try to find each subscriber referenced in the CSV file under three search condition rules:

  1. If an old alias value is provided in the CSV, this is used to search for a user. If a user is found then it will use the new alias and/or the new extension value for that subscriber’s alias and primary extension.
  2. If an old alias is not provided or does not match a user in the backup, then the old extension value is used to search for a subscriber’s primary extension. If a user is found then it will use the new alias and/or the new extension value for that subscriber’s alias and primary extension.
  3. If an old alias is not provided or does not match a user in the backup and the old extension value does not match an existing user’s primary extension, then the old extension is searched for among all the alternate extensions in the backup. If a match is found for a user’s extension then that alternate extension is replaced with the new extension value.  Nothing is done in this case with the new alias string if it’s provided.


  • Jeff Lindborg Data Viewer Help file

Author: Joe Parlas

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