Transitioning iSpace Webfiles to SharePoint


In broad strokes, the migration will handle "webfiles" this way:

  • All iSpace webfiles across department folders will be migrated to a new SharePoint library just for webfiles.
  • After your data is migrated, any iSpace links within your web site will need to be updated with the new SharePoint URL, which the project team will provide.
  • iSpace will remain available in a read-only capacity for a time (only to the project team), which means web page links to iSpace won't break right away. In general, that's a good thing.
  • The caveat is the web link will be pointing to a 'frozen' version of the document, one which can't be updated and will go away once iSpace is terminated.
  • It's important to update web links ASAP, so that they point to the most current and manageable version of the document—the one in SharePoint.

Working with BlackBoard (owner of Xythos), the project team has developed a separate "webfile" export tool that scans iSpace and selects all files linked to the UTMB web site. This utility will be used to migrate those linked files into a new SharePoint library for all UTMB webfiles.

This migration will happen in mid-September, 2019, about the same time as  departmental data migrations begin in earnest. Migrating all of UTMB's webfiles should only take a day or two, and permissions will be retained. In the new SharePoint webfiles library, each department will only see and access the same webfiles they see and access in iSpace today.

Shortly after the webfiles migration has been completed, the team will make a report available to departments that details the information needed to update the old iSpace hyperlink to the new SharePoint hyperlink. Web editors and authors should begin that work (described in the next question)  as soon as possible.

Note: A separate copy of the webfiles will be automatically migrated during the departmental migration; this is unavoidable. Those files should be deleted from your SharePoint department folder in order to prevent confusion.

Share this with your department's web editor:

  • Once the webfile report is available, update the webfile links on your site to use the new SharePoint URL as soon as possible.
  • When that process is complete, contact the project team and let us know. We will remove the 'public permissions' from your iSpace web files and move them to the Trash directory.
  • Important: If this step is overlooked, links from other sites will continue to work for as long as iSpace is up and running, and your old iSpace files will remain available. You don't want that.
  • It's better for other departments linking to your iSpace files to discover a broken link on their web page than for them to continue to serve a defunct and out-of-date file.

Note: Because department migrations will take more time overall, you may retain access to the iSpace web files until your department is migrated to SharePoint. If you move the iSpace webfiles to the Trash yourself, you MUST remove the public permissions first. Otherwise, those files will remain available via hyperlink, even from within the Trash, until they are purged (after 30 days).

It's entirely possible—many departments link out to documents also available from the Human Resources site, for example. If other sites are linking to your webfiles, their links will break once you've completed your part of the migration process (see previous question), and that's okay:

It's better for other departments linking to your iSpace files to discover that they have a broken link on their web page than for them to continue to serve a defunct and out-of-date file.

Office documents, PDFs and other files containing iSpace hyperlinks are stored in many different places—in email, on network drives, local desktop computers, etc. and might even have copies in constant circulation. Unfortunately, there is no way to identify and track these documents across such disparate locations, and no way for the project team to generate a report detailing the links that need to be updated.

These files will have to be updated, archived or deleted as they are encountered.

Our team has access to SiteImprove, a scanning tool that we are using to detect iSpace files associated with web hyperlinks. SiteImprove crawls web content, much like a search engne, and we can generate a report from that crawl data.

Unfortunately, we have no way of crawling or peering into closed systems like Blackboard or Epic. The best suggestion we can offer is for you to contact application administrators and see if they can offer some assistance.