Exporting folder structure only

Hi Experts
I can't quite find the right tool...what  would like to do is reduce the size of my SBS 2003 exchange store at is is reaching 75Gb. Most users have 70 + sub folders under their Inboxes with multiple sub sub folders.
I would like to create a PST that automatically creates a snapshot of those subfolders and then move emails from a certain date to the PST.
The automation of creating the sub folder structure is important. If all emails in each sub folder (for example any emails from 2006 right up to Dec 31st 2009) can also be MOVED that would be great.
I have seen this link
but nit sure which one to go for.
In time I think this client will want a more robust archiving system where regulatory standards come into placebut for now just need to create some space.
Any advise would be gratefully recieved
Who is Participating?
GridLock137Connect With a Mentor Commented:
you can easily do this with outlook itself, the outlook client has an archiving feature built into it. it's how i do it at work for over 60 users and it works fine. i'm sure you have see this before:

in outlook create a new PST by navigating to: Tools> Options> Mail Setup> Email Accounts> Data Files> Add> hightlight Office Outlook Personal File (.pst)> Ok> Select where to save it and give it a name> OK> Leave the next box as is, no passwords> Ok> Close.

you will now have a folder named Personal Folders, now go to: Tools> Options> the tab named Other> Auto Archive> set your Date Range> where it says Move old items to: browse to the newly created PST file or Personal Folder you just created and then apply settings.

depending on the days and months settings the auto archive will build an exact mirror of the structure of the user's inbox, tha includes: folders, subfolders, sent items, deleted items, contacts, calendar events... pretty much everything. i hope this helps, there's really no need to buy third-party apps when outlook already does the same. with a third-part app, you have to worry about where to install it and more administrative overhead. let me know if this works for your set up and if not i will take a look at your list on that site and see which is best for your set up.

Will SzymkowskiSenior Solution ArchitectCommented:
I would recommend using the GFI Mail Archiver tool. We don't personally use it in our environment but, know some people that do and they love it.


You could also use Exmerge if you would just link to export the folder structure.

Hope this helps~!
LuckyLuke57Connect With a Mentor Commented:

I don't know if I understand you well, but in my opinion you need a standard feature of Outlook 2003.

1) Create the (empty) PST-File:
- File  / New / Outlook data file.
Give this file an appropriate filename, but give it also an appropriate archivename in the next window.
2) In your "Folder list" select the folder which you like to archive (move)
3) Start the archive process:
- File / archive
4) Check "Archive this folder and all his subfolders"
5) Select the date (i.e. januari 1st 2007) and choose OK
6) Select the archive file: browse to the file you created in 1).
7) Click OK

The result is that all mails, older that the given date are moved to that archive (PST) and that the whole file structure is copied too.


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Use exmerge in Archiving mode with date filters... You can also exclude certain folders if you want, like Calendar and Contacts...
the other thing to look at is how long you keep deleted items for (deleted item retention), the value should be on the properties of your mailbox database under the 'Limits' tab. If you are keeping deleted items for 14 days consider reducing this down to 7 days and that will give you quite a bit of whitespace in the database.
i agree with meganuk3, people tend to use the deleted items folder as a filing folder instead of actually deleting items permanently from their inbox. some user training like letting them know that just because its in the deleted items does not mean it;s not taking up space, as well as an email policy letting them know that a deleted items retention period is in place and will be enforced.
RobKanjAuthor Commented:
OK Thanks all for all your replies adnd I appreciate the extra comments on dleteed item retension etc .
The points go to Gridlock and Lucky Luke because this was the simple solution I wanted to acheive for now. Yes I will look at GFI Mail archiving and even deeper enterprise products but only when the client provides me his brief, strategy and costings. Ultimately we will have to move away from SBS anyway due to one mail store and DB size limitation.
I tested the archiving and set it to clear items older than 5 years. 1 day later an exact replica of the folder structure was created within a PST. Excellent.
Thanks for the appreciation!

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