We help IT Professionals succeed at work.

Cause of modified date in Exchange 2003 mailbox

TKCyclone asked
Last Modified: 2010-03-06

We have a user that has a very large mailbox with dozen of folders that needs to archive the older messages to a PST in order to reduce his mailbox size (  limited to 600Meg. )

I understand that archiving is based on the modified date and not the received date... no issue there.
I also understand that the modified date/time will change if the e-mail has been read, edited, moved, copied, searched, etc.

What we have been noticing is that large amounts of e-mails will have modified dates reflecting changes in the middle of the night or on weekends when no user is present.

We are using Trend Micro's ScanMail 7.0 to scan all mailboxes on the Exchange 2003 server(s) for viruses.  This is performed nightly starting at 2:00am.   I'm assuming that it doesn't changed the modified date/time otherwise the modified date/time stamps for each and every e-mail would be modified on a nightly basis.    Is my assumption incorrect?

We also have Blackerry Enterprise Server 4.1.4 in our environment and their tech support has stated that BES doesn't change the modified date/time stamp for messages.

What's entertaining/interesting is that there doesn't appear to be a definable pattern that we detect so far. We have seen that mulitple messages get modified at the same time and that these times appear to be random.

The server environment is Exchange 2003 SP2
The desktops have Outlook 2003 fully patched.   We are using the Cached Exchange Mode as well.

Can anyone point me in the right direction to get a somewhat definitive answer for my users.

Best regards,
Rudy Benischke
Watch Question


What are you using to do backups?

A brick level backup system will also be likely to affect this timing.


Thanks for the prompt reply.

Sorry, we do not perform brick level backups...  

We use Veritas NetBackup to back up the entire Exchange databases...
Unlock this solution and get a sample of our free trial.
(No credit card required)


Hi Red,

Thanks for the update.

You have a point about the BB's... when the BES server does a reconcialiation (sp?), it does change the modified timestamp... I checked with my own BB and Outlook account...

As well, I discovered that the user does travel globally and he does access his BB at all times... hence the weird times that the BB reconciles.

Thank you for all your help.

What's the story?  Never believe support, they will always be biased to their product.

I am glad you got it sorted, and also proved it for the next reader - I have added this little nugget of information somewhere I hope it will be found by me later :)



Gain unlimited access to on-demand training courses with an Experts Exchange subscription.

Get Access
Why Experts Exchange?

Experts Exchange always has the answer, or at the least points me in the correct direction! It is like having another employee that is extremely experienced.

Jim Murphy
Programmer at Smart IT Solutions

When asked, what has been your best career decision?

Deciding to stick with EE.

Mohamed Asif
Technical Department Head

Being involved with EE helped me to grow personally and professionally.

Carl Webster
CTP, Sr Infrastructure Consultant
Empower Your Career
Did You Know?

We've partnered with two important charities to provide clean water and computer science education to those who need it most. READ MORE

Ask ANY Question

Connect with Certified Experts to gain insight and support on specific technology challenges including:

  • Troubleshooting
  • Research
  • Professional Opinions
Unlock the solution to this question.
Thanks for using Experts Exchange.

Please provide your email to receive a sample view!

*This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.


Please enter a first name

Please enter a last name

8+ characters (letters, numbers, and a symbol)

By clicking, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.