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PST vs. Exchange file size

Posted on 2006-05-04
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2008-02-01
file size of pst vs exchange mailbox size...
for those you that read my other post, i asked about a particular file size, htats because one of my clients has an exchange mailbox size of 1,130,369 KB... but before we transfered his mail from pst, it was 1.9 gb, and hes had it for a while, i assumed the file size went up thats why i got confused and thought that was 11 gb...

anyway, does exchange compress more than a pst? is that why the exchange box is less in size than a pst file?

reason why i thought it was 11gb was because he emailed me saying someone tried to send him an email and they got a reply saying his mailbox was full... i checked all the limitations, we didnt set any, max size for exchange is 16 gb right?  but hes only at 1.1 gb... not sure why the user wasnt able to send him mail...

Question by:baconyi

Accepted Solution

jdietrich earned 225 total points
ID: 16609801
Had he compressed the PST?  If not outlook prior to 2003 doesn't automatically do it, so it could have been 1.9, and he might have deleted stuff he didn't need transferred.  The compress reindexes, so if you don't run it you never really re-claim the space.

Author Comment

ID: 16609852
no it wasnt compressed, but he was hitting the limit (windows 2000), so we talked him and his company into getting exchnage which they did...
we had to import the pst files into the new exchange account, but i never looked at the file size of exchange after the import was done...
i know his pst with outlook 2k was 1.9 gb, so i assumed that after he went to exchange, he would save more mail and that file size would increase (thinking 1.9 gb pst was going to be 1.9 gb exchange mailbox size)... but apparently not, because 2 months later (today) i go in to see his mailbox size and i see the 1130369 kb and got confused from him saying someone got a mailbox is full message.

so i was wondering if the pst file and exchange box, without doing extra compression or reindexing has a size difference, which obviously exchange is smaller, but i didnt know why, was wondering if it was due to better compression or it just doesnt save as much as a pst file does?
LVL 10

Assisted Solution

ISoul earned 75 total points
ID: 16610651
Clarifying what jdietrich said...

Previous to Outlook 2003, the maximum size for a PST file is 2GB.

Now, the current size of all the emails he has may only add up to 1.1GB and this is what was transferred to the Exchange account, but his PST file is still 1.9GB. This might mean that he has deleted 0.8GB worth of emails... BUT the space has NOT been unallocated yet in the PST file. You need to compress the PST file before this space is reclaimed.

Assisted Solution

David_Fong earned 75 total points
ID: 16613360
I wouldn't expect it to shrink that much moving from PST to Exchange but there may well have been a new Outlook profile setup and the default is to archive email over a certain age so look on his PC for an archive.pst file with his old email in it.

Author Comment

ID: 16616950
jd - thanx
isoul - thanx for clarifying, i misunderstood
david - so i presume archiving does not re-index/compress the pst file from you're saying, so he might have had archives but never compressed the pst, so it stayed at 1.9, if i understand what you were saying

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