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Exchange Online archiving

Posted on 2013-12-17
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Last Modified: 2014-11-11
Hi,

We use Office 365.  One of our users has a large mailbox (>20 GB), but a small SSD drive, and he's running out of space.  I'd like to archive anything older than 2 years from his mailbox, using the online archiving that's available in his Office 365 plan (E3).  He would need to be able to easily access the older mails, but it would be fine if they're not on his local machine.

The problem is, I don't know where to start with this.  In Outlook, I can see the option to archive anything older than X, but I'm not sure what will happen to his older mails if I do.  Where on the server side do they go?  If he does a search in Outlook, will it also check the older mails?  What's the difference between just limiting the size of a local PST and archiving?  It's not very clear to me, and using the online archive in 365/Exchange Online is not widely documented online, as far as I could see.  There doesn't seem to be a lot of explanation about it.

To recap, I'd like to know:

- what will happen to mails on the server that are older than the threshold that I would set in Outlook?
- will they appear in search results?
- how can they be accessed again?


Many thanks for your help!

Paul
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Question by:paulc2000
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Expert Comment

by:Alexios
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Hello
Take a look at this guide regarding outlook local archiving
http://www.dummies.com/how-to/content/archiving-outlook-folders.html
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by:paulc2000
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Hi,

I'm asking about online archiving using Office 365.

Paul.
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by:Alexios
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Yes,
That post was an alternative solution

Regarding Archive Features in Exchange Online Archiving this is a good guide
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/archive-features-in-exchange-online-archiving.aspx

For test purposes try to archive a few email and see the results

About the large mailbox you won't have a problem

An Exchange Online Archiving user receives unlimited storage in the archive. However, an initial quota of 100 GB is set on the archive. This quota is large enough to accommodate and enforce reasonable use, including the import of one user’s historical email. In the event that a user reaches this quota, a call to support is required.
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by:paulc2000
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Thanks.  In Outlook, how do I set the location of the online archive?  Or where should that be done?
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Expert Comment

by:Mohammed Hamada
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You can access the archving feature from exchange management portal on Office 365 and select the user then on the right pane enable the archiving but you will need plan 2 or a special license for archiving.

You will notice this when you try to enable it.

Unlimited storage is a premium feature that requires an Exchange Online Plan 2 or Exchange Online Archiving license to enable it for each user mailbox.
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by:paulc2000
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I have already set up the online archives........  But what do I need to do to make it active?  There's nothing there now, except an empty folder.  

Outlook keeps asking me to set up auto archiving, but it's looking for a local location to store the PST.  How do I tell it to use the online archive?!  And shouldn't it already know that I'm using online archiving?
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Expert Comment

by:Mohammed Hamada
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When you go to the Exchange portal --> Mailboxes and click on one of the mailboxes on the right pane under In-Place Arcvhive and click on View Details! What does it show you there?

Could you please post a screenshot?
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Expert Comment

by:Mohammed Hamada
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Here's a summary explanation about the In-Place archive for you. it's pretty good one

http://blogs.technet.com/b/educloud/archive/2013/10/09/archiving-ediscovery-and-preservation-in-office-365-education.aspx
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by:paulc2000
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It shows it's enabled:

Exchange Online screenshot
If it's enabled, why does Outlook 2013 keep asking me to enable (local) archiving?  And if Outlook insists on asking me that, how can I specify in Outlook to use the online archive?

Here's the contents of my archive right now:

 Outlook archive screenshot
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Expert Comment

by:Mohammed Hamada
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I think we both are lost, do you have a hybrid deployment? or all your users are on office 365 Exchange? If so I don't think you will be able to use the Archiving feature.

Please take a look at this link and in particular the text below:
http://community.office365.com/en-us/forums/148/t/173460.aspx

 Exchange Online Archiving license is available to assign to those mailboxes which are on Exchange server 2010 under a hybrid environment. So if you want to use this add-on service, you need to setup a hybrid environment, un-assign the Exchange Online license from the users and move them to on-premise server.
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by:paulc2000
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No, it's not a hybrid environment.  All users are on 365.

Based on what you've found, I'll need to ask the support staff for clarification.

Thanks for your help.

Should I close this question and assign points, or wait until I hear back from MS support?
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Expert Comment

by:Mohammed Hamada
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I think it's better to hear from Microsoft because I think they should have activated the archive add-on for Office 365 exchange users as well... if they told you they haven't then you can close the question and assign the points.
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Accepted Solution

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Vasil Michev (MVP) earned 500 total points
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The default retention policy is "move everything older than 2 years to the archive". Once you have archiving enabled, it will take some time to process the messages. You can speed the process by running the following PowerShell cmdlet:

Start-ManagedFolderAssistant -Identity "user"

Make sure to also familiarize yourself with Retention Tags/Policies:

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-US/library/dd297955(v=exchg.150).aspx

To answer your other questions, older mails will stay on the server, you will still be able to search and access them directly using Outlook and even move them back to the regular mailbox if needed.
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by:paulc2000
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Hmm, thanks...  That prompts another question - how is the age of an email determined?  We migrated our emails from another (non-MS) provider about 18 months ago.  Which timestamp is used - original send date or the creation date?  I ask because there are thousands of emails older than 2 years that should have been archived but 365 may determine that they are only 18 months?
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