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Outlook Archiving and Email Retention

Posted on 2007-12-03
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Last Modified: 2008-10-15
HI,

We are putting in place an E-Mail Retention Policy and I was looking for some input.

We are planning to use GPO to archive emails that are 1 years old to a PST located on there user drives on the network. Then after the 2nd year we want to delete the messages off the PST File.

We have all emails in a archiving program in case a user needs a email that is older then 2 years.

The problem is that I can not find a GPO Setting that deletes messages off after a certain number of days.
I found the Auto Archiving Features.

We are going to use a prf file to make the default location for the PST file.

Thanks
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Question by:amendez2
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by:AGCIT
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Nothing In GPO that i know of that will do that. Best bet is to write a VBScript, or batch to clear the directory, similar to the badmail batch, then schedule it to run once a year.

Mailbox Maintance policys will only manage the folders and such in the mailbox itself.
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by:amendez2
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A VBScript can clear out the messages that are older then 2 years or clear just the pst file?
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by:AGCIT
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Oh sorry Misread that, thoguht you wanetd the archive cleared after 2 years :)

no, Create a recipient policy in the exchange server using System Manager, it will let you select which folders you want message held no longer then, and it will let you select if you want them moved or perminatly deleted.

Is that what you were after? Sorry long day
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by:AGCIT
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And yes it will do it message by message.
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by:amendez2
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Yeah, I believe that is done for the user mailbox on the server, is there any solution to put in place to delete emails from a PST?
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by:AGCIT
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no, not without plugging it into the mailbox as an additional personal folder. you dont want to import it using the wizard. it wont effect your stores, it will  read it directly from the network share.
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by:Sembee
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Be aware that PST files stored on a network drive are not supported and there is a high chance of data loss/corruption. If you need to retain the data then you should invest in an archiving solution. PST files are not an archiving solution.

Simon.
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by:amendez2
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We have a Archiving Solution in place. All emails that come in are archived on a SQL program that holds all email .

The purpose of the PST is that we will archive any message over a year in a from user mailbox (Not including the SQL Archive) to that PST to keep mailbox sizes down.

We want to know if after the emails are in pst files after a year so a total of 2 years then we can delete them from the pst. I know there is a limit to PST size. If there is a email that is older then 2 years then we will go to the SQL Archiver to pull the email.
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by:Sembee
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Do the users not have access to the archiver then?
In the sites where i have deployed a journaling type archive (ie where it takes a copy of every email as it passes through the server) the users have access to it. They cannot delete anything, but they can get it back. They are then encourage to only keep live content in the mailboxes and the use of PST files are banned - actively blocked as well. The net result has been mailboxes that are measured in mb not gb and users being a lot more productive.

If you have invested in an archiving solution then you should look at getting more from it, rather than using the awful fragile PST files.

Simon.
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by:amendez2
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That sounds like a good idea however the archiving solution we have does not seem to have great organization with it. (Would be hard for a user to find a message,You have to do a search, there is not really a mailbox solution with it. )

We have a lot of users who made there pst to there user drive already with no issues, not saying that there couldn't be in the future.  

Is there any other alternatives? If not is there a way to control the size of the PST by deleted emails that are older then 2 years?
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Sembee earned 250 total points
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Before you continue with a PST based solution, you really should look at these two articles:

http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?kbid=297019
http://blogs.technet.com/askperf/archive/2007/01/21/network-stored-pst-files-don-t-do-it.aspx

The fact that you have got away with PSTs on a network share does not mean you will continue to do so.

PSTs are unmanageable. Once the content is in there you have no control over it. A user can move it, delete it, do what they like with it - nothing you can do to stop them.

Simon.
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