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Migrating from an on-premises Jamf Pro environment to Jamf Cloud offers numerous benefits, including increased scalability, simplified maintenance, and enhanced security. However, the migration process requires careful planning and coordination to ensure a seamless transition. In this article, we will explore the steps involved in migrating from on-premises Jamf Pro to Jamf Cloud, along with key considerations and tips for a successful migration.



Before initiating the migration process, several prerequisites must be fulfilled. Firstly, it is important to update your on-premises Jamf instance to the latest version. Jamf Cloud instances are automatically upgraded and kept up to date, so making sure your on-premise version is in sync with Jamf Cloud will ensure compatibility. Upgrading to the latest version also ensures that you have access to the latest features and enhancements available in Jamf Pro. For more information, see Jamf's documentation on Preparing to Upgrade Jamf Pro.

Next, make a backup of your existing Jamf Pro database and keep it securely stored. This database contains crucial information about your devices, policies, configurations, and user data. Keeping a backup ensures that your data remains intact and can be easily transferred to the cloud environment. Refer to Jamf’s documentation on making a database backup for more information.

Additionally, coordination with your networking team is essential, as switching over the DNS entries is a critical step in the migration process. The DNS entries need to be updated to point to your Jamf Cloud instance instead of your on-premises environment. This step ensures that enrolled devices and services can seamlessly communicate with your new Jamf Cloud instance.

During the migration period, it is recommended to avoid creating new policies or updating configurations in your on-premises environment. Keeping your environment as static as possible will minimize potential complications during the migration process. Focus on maintaining stability and consistency to ensure a successful transition.


Professional Services Engagement

To ensure a smooth migration, it is advisable to engage Jamf's Professional Services team. There is a cost associated with a professional services engagement, however the team will guide you through the migration process, provide expertise, and address any challenges that may arise. Their knowledge and experience will help streamline the migration, reduce risks, and ensure a successful transition to Jamf Cloud.


Database Clean-up and Log Flushing

Before migrating your database to Jamf Cloud, it is recommended to perform a clean-up to remove unused or unmanaged devices, get rid of old policies and profiles that are no longer in use, and remove unused data with log flushing. Over time, the Jamf Pro database can accumulate unnecessary data, logs, and historical information. Cleaning up the database optimizes performance and reduces the overall size of the database. Refer to Jamf’s documentation on log flushing for more information. After making these changes, perform another backup of your database in its final state.  

The switch-over period typically lasts between 20 to 30 minutes, but could be longer depending on your environment. Be sure to schedule a maintenance window during this time to ensures minimal disruption to end-users while the database is being transferred to the cloud environment. By performing the switch-over overnight or during a low-activity period, you can ensure a seamless migration without impacting users' productivity.


Migration Process

The typical migration process involves copying the database backup from your on-premises Jamf Pro environment and restoring it to your new Jamf Cloud environment. This step is crucial, as any missing or incomplete data during the transfer can result in issues in the cloud environment.

Another migration method is the Jamf Migrator tool, which provides an easy and user friendly way of migrating. The tool allows you to transfer data from the on-premises environment to the cloud environment without the need to recreate policies or manually configure settings. It preserves existing configurations and ensures a seamless transition of your data. There are limitations to this type of migration method, so be sure to read the documentation to see if it is the right fit for your situation. For more information on migration process feel free to reach out to Jamf’s Customer Success or Professional Services team.


Considerations for On-Premises Functionality

While migrating to Jamf Cloud offers numerous benefits, it is essential to evaluate whether any specific on-premises functionality is critical for your organization. There are a few considerations to keep in mind:


Direct Read/Write Access to the Database

On-premises Jamf Pro allows for direct read and write access to the database, which may have been implemented to meet specific organizational requirements. Before migrating, carefully assess the impact of losing this functionality in the cloud environment. In many cases this functionality can be replaced with API workflows or other built-in features. Consult with Jamf’s Customer Success or Professional Services team for more information.


Integrations and Customizations

If your organization relies on certain custom API integrations, tools, or scripts that interact directly with the on-premises Jamf Pro instance, the cloud environment may have certain limitations or differences that could impact their functionality. It is important to identify the tools and services in use and whether there are differences in how they are set up or communicate with a cloud service.


Governmental Restrictions

Governmental organizations often have specific compliance requirements and data sovereignty concerns that influence their decision to maintain an on-premises infrastructure. Before migrating to the cloud, carefully review any legal or regulatory obligations and assess if Jamf Cloud complies with these requirements. Consult with your Legal and Compliance teams to ensure a smooth transition while maintaining compliance.

To address these considerations, it is recommended to work closely with Jamf's Professional Services team. They have extensive experience and can provide guidance tailored to your organization's specific needs and requirements. Their expertise will help ensure a successful migration without compromising critical functionalities. Refer to Jamf’s Privacy and Security policies for more information.


User Migration

The migration of user data follows a similar process to the database migration. Jamf will guide you on how to create the initial user migration. This involves transferring user-related information, such as user profiles, device assignments, and application preferences, from the on-premises environment to the cloud. Once the initial migration is complete, you can continue to add and manage users as needed in Jamf Cloud.



Migrating from an on-premises Jamf Pro environment to Jamf Cloud offers significant advantages in terms of scalability, maintenance, and security. By carefully planning and coordinating the migration process, including tasks such as database clean-up, engaging Professional Services, and considering specific on-premises functionality, organizations can ensure a seamless transition. Leveraging the expertise of Jamf's Professional Services team and following best practices will help you unlock the full potential of Jamf Cloud and enhance your device management capabilities.

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