Exchange mailbox not deleting email

Posted on 2014-01-07
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2014-03-10
I have a user that when looking at the exchange 2007 management gui it says is mailbox size is 1.2gb. But, when looking at the properties of his account in outlook is shows it only at a little over 600mb in the server and local tab.

Also, we have quotas setup to email users when they approach the quota and the email from exchange to this user says "storage quota is 1.5gb and your current mailbox size is 619mb".

So he's no where near the limit and still exchange thinks he at 1.2gb.

Any thoughts? Can I use the mfcmaopi tool to clean this up.

Looks like maybe old deleted email is not getting deleted. So I set the deleted retention for him to 0 days, hopping this would clear out the stuck email if there.
Question by:rdefino
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LVL 13

Expert Comment

ID: 39762805
check in the outlook online mode.
LVL 12

Expert Comment

ID: 39762829
Check your mailbox retention settings for that mailbox store.  Mailbox retention means a user deletes the mailbox and it no longer shows on their "mailbox size" from within outlook, but it will stay in the user's exchange mailbox.  This allows for the recover deleted items to function properly.

If an item was deleted on day 1 and you had retention settings set to keep deleted items for 14 days, it wouldn't be until day 15 that the item(s) deleted on day 1 were actually purged and the space recovered/cleared in the database.
LVL 53

Expert Comment

by:Will Szymkowski
ID: 39762914
Does this happen with other users in your environment? It could possibly be a corrupted OST which is not updating content properly. Try recreating the OST or even the profile and see if you get the same results.

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Author Comment

ID: 39762987
So I found the issue. Using mfcmaopi I found over 7000 emails in the deletions folder. But it didn't show in outlook. I delete them and all is fine.

LVL 12

Expert Comment

ID: 39763000
What you describe is likely the deletion retention setting, as I explained.  See this link:


See the following URL that explains the whole process from deleted items, to deletions, to purge:


Changing your retention policy to a shorter duration should be your action should you need those items to purge sooner and recover that disk space within the database for later use.

Author Comment

ID: 39763012
I set the retention to 0 days but that didn't remove them, and these emails were from 2yrs ago.

Our normal retention is 14days for all users.
LVL 12

Expert Comment

ID: 39763039
It doesn't matter when the emails were from, it matters when they were deleted.  Once an item passes the retention period and the maintenance interval runs, it will handle the cleanup on the message.

Regardless, whether you clear the messages yourself or let the exchange system handle the cleanup via retention, the same end result is achieved.  Just wanted to make sure you understood the reason the items ended up there and stayed there.
LVL 12

Accepted Solution

piattnd earned 2000 total points
ID: 39763046
This link describes the cleanup service specific to Exchange 2007 (2003 was named differently):


Verify that the Messaging Records Management feature of the server is enabled & scheduled

Author Comment

ID: 39763767
Great, thank you. This is great info.

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