Recovering emails from EDB file without associated domain

BOIT
BOIT used Ask the Experts™
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I have an 11Gb exchange server EDB file containing about 15 mailboxes, 10 of which I wish to recover. The domain that the EDB file belonged to together with all active directory data is no longer available.

I have loaded the file via a external hard disk onto a test server (different name, different domain name). I have used ESUTIL to repair the database and it says it is repaired.

The information store will not mount.

It is not possible to open with Exmerge despite trying all the permission instructions that are outlined in many postings on this site. (e.g. new group, add mailbox permissions, remove denies etc etc). I assume that is because none of the mailbox users actually exist. The error is "Make sure you have adequate permissions on the Information Store object".

What (if anything) can be done to recover the emails?

(Have put exmerge.log in the code section)
****************************************************************
Microsoft Exchange Mailbox Merge Program, v6.5.7529.0
Start Logging:October 26, 2009   11:55:25
****************************************************************
[11:55:25] Logging Level: Maximum
[11:55:25] Reading settings from file 'C:\Program Files\Exchsrvr\bin\EXMERGE.INI'.
[11:55:25] Merge action read from .INI file: 0
[11:55:25] DomainControllerForSourceServer read from INI file: ''
[11:55:25] SrcServerLDAP-Port read from INI file: ''
[11:55:25] Source server name read from .INI file: 'BOI-SERVER'.
[11:55:25] Entered Routine:  (CADRoutines::IdentifyFamilyOfExchangeRunningOnServer)
[11:55:25] Entered Routine:  (CADRoutines::GetNamingContextData)
[11:55:25] BaseDN: 'LDAP://BOI-SERVER/rootDSE'
[11:55:25] Ending Routine:  (CADRoutines::GetNamingContextData)
[11:55:25] Default Naming Context: 'DC=boit,DC=local'
[11:55:25] Entered Routine:  (CADRoutines::GetNamingContextData)
[11:55:25] BaseDN: 'LDAP://rootDSE'
[11:55:25] Ending Routine:  (CADRoutines::GetNamingContextData)
[11:55:25] Default Naming Context: 'DC=boit,DC=local'
[11:55:25] Accessing Domain Controller 'BOI-SERVER'
[11:55:25] Entered Routine:  (CADRoutines::GetExchangeServerNameInfo)
[11:55:25] BaseDN: 'LDAP://BOI-SERVER/CN=Microsoft Exchange,CN=Services,CN=Configuration,DC=boit,DC=local'
[11:55:25] Got IDirectorySearch interface
[11:55:25] Set search preferences
[11:55:25] Filter used: '(&(objectCategory=msexchExchangeServer)(cn=BOI-SERVER))'
[11:55:25] Successfully executed directory search
[11:55:25] Ending Routine:  (CADRoutines::GetExchangeServerNameInfo)
[11:55:25] 'BOI-SERVER' is running Exchange Server 2000 or later
[11:55:25] Ending Routine:  (CADRoutines::IdentifyFamilyOfExchangeRunningOnServer)
[11:55:25] Source server read from settings file is 'BOI-SERVER'.
[11:55:25] DomainControllerForDestServer read from INI file: ''
[11:55:25] SrcServerLDAP-Port read from INI file: ''
[11:55:25] Destination server name read from .INI file: ''.
[11:55:25] Message selection start date read from .INI file: ''.
[11:55:25] Reading list of subjects for messages to be selected from file ''
[11:55:25] Subject string match criteria read from INI file: 
[11:55:25] Reading list of attachment names for messages to be selected from file ''
[11:55:25] Attachment name string match criteria read from INI file: 
[11:55:25] Folder process setting read from .INI file: 2
[11:55:25] Apply to sub folders setting, read from .INI file: 0
[11:55:25] List of folders to be ignored has been read. 0 folders in the list.
[11:55:25] DelimiterUsedInMailboxFile setting read from .INI file: 0
[11:55:25] File containing list of mailboxes, read from .INI file: ''.
[11:55:25] Remove intermediate PST files setting read from .INI file: 1
[11:55:25] Date attribute read from .INI file: 0
[11:55:25] Data import method read from .INI file: 1
[11:55:25] ReplaceDataOnlyIfSourceItemIsMoreRecent setting read from .INI file: 1
[11:55:25] Copy user data setting read from .INI file: 1
[11:55:25] Copy associated folder data setting read from .INI file: 0
[11:55:25] Copy folder permissions setting read from .INI file: 0
[11:55:25] Copy dumpster items setting read from .INI file: 0
[11:55:25] UseThisPSTFileForAllMailboxes setting read from .INI file: ''
[11:55:25] MapFolderNameToLocalisedName setting read from .INI file: 0
[11:55:25] RenameFoldersBasedOnFolderMappings setting read from INI file: 0
[11:55:25] RenameSpecialFolders setting read from INI file: 1
[11:55:25] Default Locale read from INI file: 
[11:55:25] UseLastLogonLocaleID setting read from INI file: 0
[11:55:25] Current machine locale ID is 0x409
[11:55:25] Command line received: 
[11:55:25] Processor architecture: Intel
[11:55:25] Operating System Version 5.2 (Build 3790)
[11:55:29] Entered Routine:  (CADRoutines::IdentifyFamilyOfExchangeRunningOnServer)
[11:55:29] Entered Routine:  (CADRoutines::GetNamingContextData)
[11:55:29] BaseDN: 'LDAP://BOI-SERVER/rootDSE'
[11:55:29] Ending Routine:  (CADRoutines::GetNamingContextData)
[11:55:29] Default Naming Context: 'DC=boit,DC=local'
[11:55:29] Entered Routine:  (CADRoutines::GetNamingContextData)
[11:55:29] BaseDN: 'LDAP://rootDSE'
[11:55:29] Ending Routine:  (CADRoutines::GetNamingContextData)
[11:55:29] Default Naming Context: 'DC=boit,DC=local'
[11:55:29] Accessing Domain Controller 'BOI-SERVER'
[11:55:29] Entered Routine:  (CADRoutines::GetExchangeServerNameInfo)
[11:55:29] BaseDN: 'LDAP://BOI-SERVER/CN=Microsoft Exchange,CN=Services,CN=Configuration,DC=boit,DC=local'
[11:55:29] Got IDirectorySearch interface
[11:55:29] Set search preferences
[11:55:29] Filter used: '(&(objectCategory=msexchExchangeServer)(cn=BOI-SERVER))'
[11:55:29] Successfully executed directory search
[11:55:29] Ending Routine:  (CADRoutines::GetExchangeServerNameInfo)
[11:55:29] 'BOI-SERVER' is running Exchange Server 2000 or later
[11:55:29] Ending Routine:  (CADRoutines::IdentifyFamilyOfExchangeRunningOnServer)
[11:55:29] Entered Routine:  (CADRoutines::GetExchangeServerStorageGroupInfo)
[11:55:29] BaseDN: 'GC://CN=InformationStore,CN=BOI-SERVER,CN=Servers,CN=first administrative group,CN=Administrative Groups,CN=BOIT,CN=Microsoft Exchange,CN=Services,CN=Configuration,DC=boit,DC=local'
[11:55:29] Got IDirectorySearch interface
[11:55:29] Set search preferences
[11:55:29] Filter used: '(objectClass=msexchPrivateMDB)'
[11:55:29] Successfully executed directory search
[11:55:29] Ending Routine:  (CADRoutines::GetExchangeServerStorageGroupInfo)
[11:55:29] Entered Routine:  (CADRoutines::GetMailboxesHomedOnExchangeServerDatabases)
[11:55:29] Mailbox '/o=BOIT/ou=first administrative group/cn=Configuration/cn=Servers/cn=BOI-SERVER/cn=Microsoft System Attendant' will be ignored as its DN contains strings in the ignore list
[11:55:29] Mailbox '/o=BOIT/ou=first administrative group/cn=Configuration/cn=Connections/cn=SMTP (BOI-SERVER)/cn={92D67447-A150-4661-AAD1-022CD11F8BD9}' will be ignored as its DN contains strings in the ignore list
[11:55:29] Mailbox '/o=BOIT/ou=first administrative group/cn=Recipients/cn=SystemMailbox{92D67447-A150-4661-AAD1-022CD11F8BD9}' will be ignored as its DN contains strings in the ignore list
[11:55:29] Found 4 mailbox(es) homed on database 'NORMAL FIRST STORAGE GROUP/MAILBOX STORE (BOI-SERVER)'.
[11:55:29] Ignored 3 mailbox(es) homed on database 'NORMAL FIRST STORAGE GROUP/MAILBOX STORE (BOI-SERVER)'.
[11:55:29] Found 4 mailbox(es) homed on the specified databases.
[11:55:29] Ignored 3 mailbox(es) homed on the specified databases.
[11:55:29] Ending Routine:  (CADRoutines::GetMailboxesHomedOnExchangeServerDatabases)
[11:55:29] Entered Routine:  (CMapiSession::CreateSystemAttendantProfile)
[11:55:29] Entered Routine:  (CAdminProfileRoutines::CreateSystemAttendantProfile)
[11:55:29] Entered Routine:  (CAdminProfileRoutines::CreateSystemAttendantProfile)
[11:55:29] Entered Routine:  (CAdminProfileRoutines::HackMapiSvcInfForSA)
[11:55:29] Ending Routine:  (CAdminProfileRoutines::HackMapiSvcInfForSA)
[11:55:29] Ending Routine:  (CAdminProfileRoutines::CreateSystemAttendantProfile)
[11:55:29] Ending Routine:  (CAdminProfileRoutines::CreateSystemAttendantProfile)
[11:55:29] Ending Routine:  (CMapiSession::CreateSystemAttendantProfile)
[11:55:29] Entered Routine:  (CMapiSession::Logon)
[11:55:29] Entered Routine:  (CMapiSession::MapiInit)
[11:55:29] Successfully initialized MAPI.
[11:55:29] Ending Routine:  (CMapiSession::MapiInit)
[11:55:29] MAPI Logon successful.
[11:55:29] Ending Routine:  (CMapiSession::Logon)
[11:55:29] Entered Routine:  (CMapiSession::GetMailboxesOnServer)
[11:55:29] Getting list of mailboxes on the server.
[11:55:29] Found default store.
[11:55:29] Error opening message store (EMS). Verify that the Microsoft Exchange Information Store service is running and that you have the correct permissions to log on. - 0x8004011d ( (CMapiSession::GetMailboxesOnServer))
[11:55:29] Error getting list of mailboxes on server 'BOI-SERVER'
[11:55:29] Finished getting list of mailboxes.
[11:55:29] Ending Routine:  (CMapiSession::GetMailboxesOnServer)
[11:55:29] Session logoff successful.
[11:55:29] Entered Routine:  (CMapiSession::DeleteOurProfile)
[11:55:29] Ending Routine:  (CMapiSession::DeleteOurProfile)
[11:55:29] Error encountered getting mailbox information from the private information store database(s) on server 'BOI-SERVER'. Make sure you have adequate permissions on the Information Store object. Please refer to the 'ExMerge.log' log file for more information.
[11:57:23] MAPI uninitialized.

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Awarded 2009
Top Expert 2010
Commented:
If the Active directory is no longer available then exmerge will not work, you will need to use a 3rd party tool that can access the EDB directly.

Something like: http://www.edb-recovery.com/?gclid=CP_v0qHV2p0CFVBd4wodpGwtrA

Or you can pay a datarecovery expert or an Exchange specialist that has recovery tools.
Awarded 2009
Top Expert 2010

Commented:
Sorry that was the wrong link, whilst it will work I have no experience of that software, I do have experience of this company though: http://www.recovermails.com/exchange-edb-recovery.html
I've used OnTrack in the past to retrieve mailboxes in similar circumstances for legal cases when all I had was a copy of the EDB without associated AD domain controllers.

http://www.ontrackpowercontrols.com/market/recover-exchange/?psearch=google

Hope this helps - good luck!

Mike
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Alan HardistyCo-Owner
Top Expert 2011
Commented:
I have a copy of OnTrack PowerControls and have used this many times to recover Exchange data from an EDB file successfully.
It is expensive and there are cheaper alternatives.
Here is the ontrack link and the altentives.  These seem to be your only options (apart from the one that Demazter has linked you to):
http://www.filesland.com/companies/Nucleus-Data-Recovery/Exchange-EDB-Recovery.html
http://www.officerecovery.com/exchangeserver/index.htm
http://www.stellarinfo.com/edb-exchange-server-recovery.htm
http://www.ontrackpowercontrols.com/ 
Awarded 2009
Top Expert 2010

Commented:
I have also used ontrack, the only problem is it's very expensive!

Author

Commented:
I have downloaded and tried the suggested recovery tool (from Stellar) and another one called "Kernel for Exchange Server" and both do a long scan of file but find no mailboxes.

I am going to re-restore the file from backup, before the esutil was run on it, and try again. I will let you know what happens ...
Alan HardistyCo-Owner
Top Expert 2011

Commented:
Okay - shout if you don't get anywhere.
Awarded 2009
Top Expert 2010

Commented:
Interesting, they should both bring mailboxes back if they exist.

Author

Commented:
Both Stellar and Kernel worked after the file was restored from backup. The MS repair tool must have wiped the orginal.

Stellar listed the mailboxes in evaluation mode whilst Kernel listed the mailboxes, folders and previewed all the items just like Outlook.

I am going to purchase Kernel so I can save the items out.

Author

Commented:
Thanks for all your help.
Awarded 2009
Top Expert 2010

Commented:
Kernel is a great tool, and not too costly either.
Glad to be of assitance.

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