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Retrieving Emails from Exchange 2003 Server

Posted on 2012-03-10
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Last Modified: 2012-03-10
I've just done a P2V virtualisation of a 2003 SBS server and forgot to stop Exchange 2003. Therefore the new virtualised server does not have emails received during the migration process, missing about 18 hours worth of emails which are obviously on the old server.

Because they both have the same domain name etc, I have the old server sat running on a different IP subnet so I can still access it for emergencies until we're sure everything is off it. The only issue are these emails. There are only about 200 emails which were received during this window and delivered to the local mailboxes on the old server.

I'm trying to find a way of retireving these emails. I can see a list of them in the Message Tracker, most of them are spam but there are a handful I need to get.

My current solution would be to use OWA to login to the individual mailboxes and then just take screenshots or copy and paste the emails but it will be a very long process and wondered if there was an easier way?
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Question by:andrew_2706
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12 Comments
 
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Expert Comment

by:dipersp
ID: 37705431
How big is the store?  My thought is that you could backup the store on the original machine, copy the backup over and run it as the Exchange recovery store and extract what you need from there. . .
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Author Comment

by:andrew_2706
ID: 37705448
It's about 20Gb so would also take ages to copy across and I'm not sure how to do what you suggest but could have a go if its simple and is the easiest way.
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Expert Comment

by:dipersp
ID: 37705465
20gb shouldn't be too long. I assume you already started receiving email on the virtual box?  If not, I'd just p2v again.
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Expert Comment

by:dipersp
ID: 37705467
Also, take a look at exmerge. I haven't used it in forever, but I'm trying to remember if you could set a filter by date...
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Author Comment

by:andrew_2706
ID: 37705499
So are all the emails stored within the .edb? I can copy it to the new VM. Yes, it has already received new mails and is online :-( Not sure what to do once I get the .edb there! I've started copying across the 20Gb priv1.edb file in the hope that's all I need to recover the emails.
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Expert Comment

by:dipersp
ID: 37705543
Yes, all email is stored in the EDB file - but it's more complicated than that.  Since your new mail server has already received emails, we can't just push the EDB in (Restored or otherwise.)  Your best bet at this point is to cancel the 20 gig copy of the EDB and get a copy EXMERGE (Google it.)  I'm pretty sure the last versions of EXMERGE allow you to filter based on date/time.  If so - it will export the emails you need to PST.  Then you'll just need to re-import those messages back to the proper mailboxes (And EXMERGE can help on the import side as well.)

Depending on your security, you will need to use an account that is not an admin account but does have access to all mailboxes (If you use BES, for example, use your BESADMIN account for the exmerge work.)
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Author Comment

by:andrew_2706
ID: 37705549
As I can see the individual emails I need from within the message tracking centre, as well as what appears to be a unique Hex reference for each email I wonder if it possible to somehow extract them on their own somehow?
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dipersp earned 2000 total points
ID: 37705554
Nope.  Your only hope at this point is exmerge.  Very easy to use - trust me, no sense spinning your wheels elsewhere at this point.

Only other option is to purchase a third-party utility that will let you open the EDB files and access them directly, but they can be expensive whereas Exmerge is free and almost as easy to use.
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Author Comment

by:andrew_2706
ID: 37705556
OK, I'll give it a try many thanks.
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Author Comment

by:andrew_2706
ID: 37705668
It creates all the pst's but errors on all but one, i think it's the permissions issue. i did create a user and followed the procedure for adding the sendas permissions as if for besadmin as there is no bes, then logged in with that account and it would not even read the user list so just wondering how to add the correct permissions.
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Author Comment

by:andrew_2706
ID: 37705731
make sure permissions are right then it just works! Many thanks.
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LVL 9

Expert Comment

by:dipersp
ID: 37705754
Glad that did it!
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