We are creating a new site collection and migrating content from the old site. The problem is we need to retain version history for files. We have global admin access, but no access to the server itself, so powershell and installing third-party tools are not an option. Is there a way to copy those documents over using another method, like maybe web services?
As you said now server side installation / powershell then your option is very much limited.
- Save the list / library as template on source side and then move it to destination site collection, after that create new library using that template. This will move all documents to new site collections. But if you want just few documents then i would create temp library from the template then move required documents using the content structure options. http://pravahaminfo.blogspot.com/2011/05/how-to-move-document-library-from-one.html
- other option you have 3rd party tool, i would recommend to test the Share-Gate as this totally client side tools you need permission on source and destination sites only. as they have 15 days trial so try it.
You can use Export/Import to carry over versions of the document. The Export-SPWeb cmdlet gives you a parameter that allows you to specify if you want to export the versions of the list items/documents as well
Export-SPWeb http://site -Path "site export.cmp" -IncludeVersions All
I have used One Drive for coping files from a site to a site collection and didn't have any problems with that. I had to ask users to close all documents first and I've disabled 'Edit' rights for everyone except Admin to avoid any syncing problems. Also, if you have Check in/out enabled you need to disable this for the move and enable it again after all files are copied/moved.
Unfortunately version history was not retained but this was not a requirement for us so I didn't really check if it's possible, might be worth checking.
You can use the Send To command to copy the documents to the new location and then remove the link to the source file. Once the link is removed, you can delete the document from its original location and have only the one document. Instructions on Office Support: https://support.office.com/en-my/article/Copy-a-file-to-another-library-or-Send-To-location-0bfe3b52-db99-44ed-91c7-140aa9ba3d41