Restore Mailbox after deleting exchange 2003 servers

I have Exchange 2003 and Exchange 2007. There used to be two Exchange 2003 back-end servers, but one of them was decommissioned and Exchange 2003 software was removed from that server. Now, I need to restore a mailbox that used to be on that server. I know I can do RSG on the remaining Exchange 2003 server, but I believe the fact that Exchange 2003 was gracefully removed from the other server, has removed the database information from AD. When I try to select databases to restore for the RSG, I don't see the database that I'm looking for.

Does this mean that my only option is to create a separate environment with the server that was removed in order to be able to restore this data from tape? I'd appreciate it if someone can confirm and give me guidance as to what my options are. Thanks.
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bnditAsked:
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bnditAuthor Commented:
Long-term solution: I built a recovery Exchange 2003 environment in a virtual infrastructure as well as the backupexec server connected to a dedicated tape drive. It's costly but since I have many backup exch2k3 tapes this is the best solution available in my case.
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FDiskWizardCommented:
From what I recall you can't do it without creating a recovery server.
See this for details (Method 3):
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/823176

But... I was curious what would happen if you recreated the store name...
So I googled and I found this thread...
http://www.eggheadcafe.com/software/aspnet/32639894/restoring-an-old-mailbox.aspx
Jump down about half-way and read the long response with subject: 'Hi Mike,Thank you for your update..."

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Dunedan79Commented:
Did you back up the store with granular recovery enabled? If so you should be able to restore just the mailbox to another mailbox using Exchange redirection settings.
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Dunedan79Commented:
I guess I should have asked what you used to back the store up. My experience is with Backup Exec.
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bnditAuthor Commented:
No, the backup is a regular backup taken with BackupExec...no GRT or brick-level...not even snapshot backup, which would allow me to at least redirect and restore the .bkf flat file...

I'm trying what FDiskWizard found...
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EllushCommented:
If you can get Quest Recovery Manager for Exchange  or Kroll Ontrack , you do not need a recovery server.All you need are the database files - these programs can access the files using backup aoftware or directly from tapes.Of course it can work with the DB restored to HD. I had to restore exchange 5.5  DB some time ago (backup from 2000) and Recovery Manager did the job.
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bnditAuthor Commented:
@Ellush
Thanks for the tip...I've used Ontrack before; very effective tool and expensive too. I should've mentioned in my initial post that I was looking for a cost-efficient solution to solve my problem especially when it could be a long-term solution (3-5yrs).
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Dunedan79Commented:
I have used the Ontrack tool and it is nice. AppAssure has a backup utility called Replay and also a utility called MailRetriever for Exchange. It basically reads an edb store like a pst file, allowing you to extract any and all information from it.

With MailRetriever, you would recover the edb file from tape but not mount it. Then open it like a massive pst. MailRetriever should be more affordable than Ontrack.
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bnditAuthor Commented:
@Dunedan79
I took a look at Replay and MailRetriever...however, in my case I don't think think these tools help. My problem is :

A) that the backup is a "plain" BackupExec backup set (not a GRT, not a snapshot, not a VSS), and
B) Exchange was removed from that server so I can't use RSG to restore the database (these databases are not available in AD to choose from).

I really think that my only option left is to build a recovery AD environment with the Exchange server that no longer exists in my production and connect a tape drive to the recovery environment and restore.
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Dunedan79Commented:
Hmm, you might want to call Symantec tech support on this. I had a similar issue a few years back and they had a way to extract the file data off of the tape, some sort of copy job from tape to B2D storage that left all of the files exposed. I was then able to open the edb file with MailRetriever.

I can't say offhand how to do the media copy though. It's been too long.
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bnditAuthor Commented:
@Dunedan79

Already called them...nothing they can do for me now. They initially had suggested for me to use a Recovery Storage Group..but since that server is no longer part of AD, I cannot attach the databases to restore even though I still have an Exchange 2003 server part of the organization. I'm currently working on a recovery environment...
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bnditAuthor Commented:
Found the solution on my own.
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