The purpose of this document is to provide specific information on the requirements necessary to prepare your data for upload, the supported file type requirements accepted for upload and naming structure your upload must adhere to. These requirements are provided by the Sonian Archiving service and any deviation of these requirements can result in the rejection of your data.

If you do not have the Sonian Archive service and are interested in activating it, please contact your support agent or submit your request to

When setting up to upload your data, you must first have Sonian services enabled for your account. Additionally, you must also contact our support staff,, to request access to our Secure FTP server so your data can be uploaded securely. When access our FTP site, you must use a Secure FTP client to properly connect. We recommend using the WinSCP client, that can be downloaded HERE. The login information will be provided upon request.

All data must adhere to the specific requirements below before uploading the data into our SFTP site. Once uploaded, the data will then be uploaded directly to the Sonian service.

Preparing your Data for Upload

Before you upload your data. please read the following requirements necessary to prepare your data to be uploaded to Sonian.

The Sonian services requires that all file formats be in either in .PST or .EML formats. Each individual uncompressed .PST file should be no larger then 30GB in total size to avoid data corruption during upload. Each upload can be compressed into a .Zip file and those requirements are below.

For all File Type Requirements:

  1. No co-mingling of file types in a single directory or folder or compressed file.
  2. Supported compression formats:  zip, .tar, .gz, or 7z 
  3. File and path names must contain no spaces or special characters other than @ . _ or -
  4. File extensions must be lowercase. Example: .pst or .eml not .EML or .PST)
  5. Eml and rfc822 files MUST be provided in a zipped format.
  6. File directory structure within zip files must be no more than 4 levels deep. (File levels are sub-directories within the top-level zip file, and do not represent zips within zips.)
  7. Each zip archive should only contain one level of compression; ( No zip files within the main zip file )
  8. The names of the zip file(s) must include the extension of the file-types contained within. For example: < or or or>
  9. Compressed file names must contain the company's name or sub-domain.

How long will my import of data take? 

Processing data for ingestion can take a varied amount of time to complete. This article is provided to help you to understand why some actions take time, and your options - if any exist, on improving the time frame it takes to import.

Importing Legacy Data items is a common everyday process here on the View archive platform, and our cloud optimized infrastructure is designed to provide the best value of service for everyone.

When ingesting data to an archive account, there can be multiple factors that will need to be taken into account that can affect how long an import process will take to complete.

Some of those factors are:

  1. Number of folders within the PST file structure
  2. Size of a PST file
  3. Complexity of a folder structure housing the messages
  4. The number of messages, and the documents within the messages
  5. Compression
  6. Encryption

All of these factors are taken into consideration when we process your data. Other factors that are taken into consideration are: extracting compressed / encrypted data, conversions, securely storing, encrypting and indexing all the files.

When we are ready to process your data for import, we assign a set number of resources to churn through the data. The number of compute power resources utilized are aligned to the standard import costs that have been provided to you.

Guideline Time frames for Import:

Import Size
Estimated Timeframe*
Less that 25GB
Upto 2 weeks
25GB to 50GB
3 weeks
50GB to 100GB
4 weeks
100GB to 1TB
6 weeks
Over 1TB
Please Contact your service provider for an estimated completion time.

 * From receipt of ALL the data to be imported. These are rough estimates and should not be considered a commitment or SLA.


Why do some imports go faster than others?

Once files are converted into a standard MIME/RFC.822 format they are inserted into a queuing service for secure archiving and indexing.  The processing rate varies at this stage is based upon a few factors.  They include:

  • Size/profile of email attachments that go through a text extraction service.
  • Availability of excess computing services.
  • Capacity consumed by day to day archiving activities (daily journaling, exports, other import tasks, etc.)

What can be done to help improve the efficiency of importing this data?

Supply messages in EML format. The most efficient method to process any email data is to have provided this data to Sonian as a standard MIME/RFC.822 format (EML).

If you are about to leave an existing archive service and use PST supplied data, then we have a preferred naming convention for the PST data to be prepared as, please refer to the following document located here:

In addition, we recommend that single PST files do not exceed 30GB, and are proved not to be corrupt if attempted to open via an outlook client. PST Files should NOT be password protected. Password protected PST files cannot be processed by the service and may require that the data is re-submitted without any passwords.

Can we speed things up?

If there is a need for you to provide data that has urgent e-discovery needs then YES, the timeline for importing your data can improved by utilizing additional/dedicated compute resources at an extra premium cost to you.

Backup considerations

Any data you supply, whether exported from your mail servers or standing legacy data from a file store, ensure you retain a copy of all data before you send, especially if you plan to send data on a USB hard-drive.