SBS 2003 Exchange folder in public folders missing in Outlook?

Posted on 2009-04-30
Last Modified: 2012-05-06
A user announced that they could not find some emails they had sent and received over a year ago. They said it was possible they could have moved the emails to a folder in public folders for that subject. Unfortunately that folder does not seem to exist, at least from a client using Outlook 2003 or 2007.

I did some further investigation and went into the Exchange System Manager and drilled down to Public Folders in the Public Folder Store.

I was browsing the folders and can see a folder titled with the subject of the emails we're looking for. It must be the folder with all the emails in! However I can't see it in outlook at all! All the other folders seem visible but it's possible others are missing too, what could have caused this and why is it visible in exchange but not outlook? Is there a way I can get to this folder without recovering the public folders from an old backup.

Another thing worth mentioning is that in exchange system manager all the folders have today's date shown as the last access time, I'm guessing this is because I have been searching through them all today from outlook using the find tool, however the folder in question is the only one showing a last access time of over a year ago! As if outlook can see the folder while searching also.

Please help me fix this phenomenon, we desperately need those emails.


Question by:jdunnill
    LVL 65

    Accepted Solution

    You need to look at the CLIENT permissions on the properties of the folder and ensure that the users have the relevant permissions for the folder. DO NOT touch any other permissions. Public Folders can be completely hidden with the right public folder permissions.


    Author Comment

    I managed to sorted this out, I didn't realise what I could change permissions from within Exchange System Manager as I was getting a "The token supplied to the function is invalid" error whenever trying to access the object (folder) properties.

    I googled this and it was down to an SSL certificate error on the virtual site in IIS. I removed the certificate and it allowed me into the properties to change them to allow all users to view them.

    The problem occurred because the person who created the folders had only set the permissions for themselves to access the folder and not all users as they should have. The user has since left, had their account deleted so it appeared that the folder was gone. After changing the permissions as shown above they became available again.

    An unfortunate sequence of events.

    As you did hit the nail on the head with your response I'll award the points and it will be helpful to people in future.

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