The migration table editor

Applies To: Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2003 R2, Windows Server 2003 with SP1, Windows Server 2003 with SP2

The Migration Table Editor

The Migration Table Editor (MTE) is provided with Group Policy Management Console (GPMC) to facilitate the editing of migration tables. Migration tables are used for copying or importing Group Policy objects (GPOs) from one domain to another, in cases where the GPOs include domain-specific information that must be updated during copy or import. For information about migration tables, see Migration tables.

MTE displays three columns of information:

Source Name Source Type Destination Name

Name of the user, computer, group, or UNC path, referenced in the source GPO.

The type of the reference named in the Source Name column. For example, Domain Global Group.

The new value, after copy or import to the new GPO; or the method used to calculate the new value.

Note that you do not specify Destination Type. The Destination Type is determined during the import or copy operation by checking the actual reference identified in the Destination Name.

Migration Table Editor Features

MTE offers these features:

  • You can edit text fields using Cut, Copy, and Paste options, for example when you right-click an item in the Source Name column.

  • You can add computers, users, and groups, for source and destination names, by using a Browse dialog box.

  • You can fill in Source Type fields by using a drop-down menu.

  • MTE provides automatic syntax checking to make sure the XML file is properly populated and also ensures that only compatible entries are entered in the table. For example, \\server1\share1 is not a valid security group name name, and server1 is not a valid UNC path so MTE prompts the user to correct those entries.

  • You can validate the overall migration table using MTE, in addition to basic syntax checking using the Validate Table option, which is available on the Tools menu. The Validate Table option checks to ensure:

    • The existence of destination security principals and UNC paths. This is important to know before you copy or import a GPO, because if there are unresolvable entries in the migration table, then the copy or import operation might fail.

    • Source entries with UNC paths do not have destinations of MapByRelative name or NoDestination.

    • Type of the destination entry in the table matches the real type in the destination source.

  • You can auto-populate a migration table by scanning one or more GPOs or backups to extract all references to security principals and UNC paths, and then enter these items into the table as source name entries. This capability is provided by the Populate from GPO and Populate from Backup options available on the Tools menu. To complete the migration table, you only need to adjust the destination values. By default, the destination name for each entry will be set to Same as source when you use either of the Populate options.


    • With either auto-populate option, when the source GPO or backup contains references to built-in groups such as Administrators or Backup Operators, these references will not be entered into the migration table if the references are stored in the source GPO or backup in their resolved format [based on security identifier (SID)]. This is because built-in groups have the same SID in all domains and therefore cannot be mapped to new values using a migration table. However, if references to built-in groups are stored as free text, they will be captured by the auto-populate options. In this case, you can map them as long as you specify the source type as "Free Text or SID."

Accessing Migration Table Editor

MTE can be opened in the following ways:

  • In GPMC, right-click either the Domains node in a given forest or the Group Policy Objects container in a given domain, and then click Open Migration Table Editor.

  • In GPMC, when you use wizards to import or copy GPOs that have references to users, groups, computers, or UNC paths, you can open MTE to edit, examine, or create a migration table.

  • When you double-click a migration table (.migtable), it opens in MTE.

  • You can open MTE from the command line. The executable, mtedit.exe, is located in Program Files\GPMC. Example: mtedit table1.migtable / /DC:DC1.

Command-line support for Migration Table Editor


Mtedit.exe [/domain:value][/DC:value] [/forest:value][/DisableTrustChecking][filename][/?]



Specifies the domains to be used with the "Populate from GPO" option. The domain must be specified in DNS format. When used with the /DC parameter, this parameter can be specified multiple times in the order to include multiple domains.


Specifies the domain controller to use for the previously specified domain. If no domain controller is specified, any will be used. You can specify either DNS or NetBIOS format for the name of the domain controller.


If specified, the Migration Table Editor will use all domains in the specified forest to populate the Domain list in the Select GPO dialog box used for the "Populate from GPO" option. This parameter can be specified multiple times in the order to include domains from the more than one forest. The forest name must be specified as the DNS name of the forest root domain in the forest.


If this parameter is not specified, you can only access domains to which you have two-way trust.


Specifies the name of a migration table you want to open in the Migration Table Editor.


Displays the usage.

See Also


Migration tables
Create a migration table