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Exchange Server - how to restore individual mailboxes

Posted on 2006-06-22
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Last Modified: 2010-03-06
An SBS 2003 server had accumulated so many system problems with raid drivers and
other issues we performed a domain swing migration to a temporary server,
then back to the original hardware using the Jeff Middleton procedures for
this operation - except we used the mail-box move function to move each
mailbox to the temp and then moved each mailbox back to the clean install on
the original hardware.  (to avoid getting hung up on mounting moved
databases on the new server )

The results have been perfect except for 2 corrupted mailboxes out of a
total of 40.  When access them with OWA everything is fine, but they don't
load into Outlook correctly.  Outlook crashes or displays error messages
when the user moves from one outlook folder to another. One just lost all
inbox content except for her sub-folders when opening the mailbox from a
different workstation.

We have a 2 week old pre-migation backup.   The database paths are different
on the new server than the paths during the backup.

What is the best approach for fixing corrupt mailboxes ?   or if we have to
restore from the old backup for the two problem mailboxes, does that have to
be done with an exchange recovery server, or is there some other way?
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Question by:swbruce21
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Expert Comment

by:ganongj
ID: 16958889
HI swbruce,

Exchange recovery groups aren't as scary as they sound, they work great, and it's easy to do, you can do it right on your exchange server with little effort.  here's the microsoft link http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;[ln];824126  

I have used this several times, and it's pretty straightforward...

Regards,

Jim
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Expert Comment

by:Exchange_Admin
ID: 16960475
You may want to try this option first:
Using EXMERGE extract the data from the problem mailboxes to PST files.
Then delete the mailboxes and recreate them.
Then use EXMERGE to push the data from the PST files to the new mailboxes.

But if you are having problems accessing the mailbox with Outlook then you may have problems with EXMERGE.
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Author Comment

by:swbruce21
ID: 16961280
Having looked at the problem more carefully, about 1/2 of all users have problems with Outlook not being able to open some mail folders and with a message "Outlook could not access the specified folder location"  the wording varies with different versions of outlook.

The seveity of this problem varies between users.

NO Problem with Outlook Web Access.

Cannot use Outlook to backup a single inbox folder to a pst file.   I would be surprised if Exmerge would work but it is worth a try.

Is there a Utility to run against the exchange database to sort out this type of issue ?
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Accepted Solution

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Exchange_Admin earned 500 total points
ID: 16961367
Maybe an ISINTEG -S SERVERNAME -FIX -TEST ALLTESTS
would correct this. It really depends. ISINTEG will try to correct any problems with the links between tables in the database. But since you don't have a problem accessing via OWA I am not sure this would correct anything.
Other than this have you tried creating a NEW Outlook profile for the problem users?
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Author Comment

by:swbruce21
ID: 16965247
Removing and replacing the profiles had no effect.

I am going to try exmerge next to see if it will work or not.

I never mentioned that Outlook 2003 always has a status bar error on SendRecieve saying "object not found"  
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Author Comment

by:swbruce21
ID: 16968261
Thanks for your effors but I found the problem

While performing "move" operations from Server-A to Server-Temp, and then back to a fresh Server-A, an offline address book fodler in the public folders was missing when completed.  

This is what caused the "object missing" message on some Outlook clients but screwed up outlook for almost everyone, but not everyone for some reason.

Since they didn't really use public folders for anything I just deleted pub1.edb and pub1.stm and let exchange create new empty database files.
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