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Google Search Appliance Discontinued – Frequently Asked Questions

Since Google announced its end-of-support for the Google Search Appliance (GSA), many GSA customers have asked the question – “What now?” As we work with our 200+ GSA customers to develop and implement their migration plans, our experts have compiled the most commonly asked questions from the customers. In this post, we’ll be sharing those FAQs to provide some high-level guidance that can help you plan your GSA migration successfully. 

When will support for the GSA end?

Google has announced that the GSA's end-of-life is March 2019.

How long can I renew my current GSA?

For current customers with GSAs that are eligible for renewal during the 2017 calendar year, they are able to renew for a final one year period. 

Please note that it has not yet been decided by Google whether there is an option to do an early renewal, before the end of 2017, for renewals due in early 2018 for coverage through December 31, 2018.

What happens after Google’s support ends? Would my GSA still run?

Once your final license expires, your GSA will soon cease to work. The critical date for a GSA customer is the license expiration date.

When should I start migration planning?

Start early so you can avoid unexpected delays and focus on new search initiatives beyond the GSA. If you’re wondering how other GSA customers are preparing for the transition, check out our recent “The State of GSA Migration Planning” survey conducted among hundreds of GSA users. 

What’s Google Springboard – Is it the GSA’s cloud replacement?

According to an official Google blog, Springboard is a set of apps that “searches quickly and easily across all of your information in Google Apps including Gmail, Calendar, Docs, Drive, Contacts and more.” This is a natural extension of Google’s decision to integrate the GSA's search into its Google for Work universe of enterprise products. 

In 2017, Google announced that Springboard was renamed Google Cloud Search, a new cloud-based platform incorporating machine learning to provide a unified search experience across G-Suite.

To discuss whether Google Cloud Search is the most suitable replacement for your GSA, request a free consultation with our experts.

Is there a search engine that can replicate all of my GSA features?

Most of today's search engines support nearly all of the features supported by the GSA. The GSA directly supports more methods of authentication (AuthN) and authorization (AuthZ) than most proprietary and open source search engines. However, virtually all search engines can be configured for document-level security with some additional component integration. Other GSA features like KeyMatches and Suggested Queries are actually independent of the search engine. Other search engines either support these ancillary features directly or they can be implemented within a search application – the user search interface – itself.

Search Technologies has developed a feature stack of implementations for these GSA functions that can be used with other commercial and open source search engines. One feature available in other search engines – true Facet Navigation – provides a better implementation of search results navigation than the GSA’s Dynamic Navigation.

What are the most critical things to consider during my GSA migration?

We have noticed that many, if not most of our customers buy the Google Search Appliance because they want their enterprise search to work “just like Google” rather than having requirements for a search appliance solution (apart from unique organizational requirements). We believe that's where enterprise search is heading today. And most often, regardless of the search engine used, a combination of proper implementation, optimal configurations, and continuous tuning are required to achieve that goal. Read about the key features that GSA customers should consider for an overall enhanced search experience.

There are many search products on the market promising a simple migration from the GSA. What are my options for migrating from the GSA?

Every organization is using the GSA differently. As a search engine agnostic company, we start with an analysis of a customer’s search requirements and match those requirements to the right search engine. So we approach migrations with a proven roadmap for selecting and implementing the optimal replacement rather than recommending any specific search engine without fully understanding your GSA use cases and what you want to accomplish beyond the GSA. 

Because there’s no one-size-fits-all answer, our complimentary consultation helps current GSA customers evaluate the most appropriate options and migration paths for their situations. Request your complimentary consultation today.