Exchange 2010-2013 Public Folders (are they needed??)

We're finishing up a dual-sing migration from Exchange 2003-2010-2013, and I just finished moving the last of the mailboxes from the Exchange 2010 server to the 2013 server. For some reason, even though we don't have any Outlook 2003 clients, it created the public folder database when I did the Exchange 2010 install. We don't use or need them a all, as ALL of our email clients are at least Outlook 2010 SP2.  The only "public folders" there are, on the 2010 server are the system ones that are created during the installation: the 1"Default Public Folders" one: Internet Newsgroups, and the 5 "System Public Folders" ones: EFORMS REGISTRY, Events Root, OFFLINE ADDRESS BOOK, SCHEDULE+ FREE BUSY, and schema root. Can I just delete the database from the 2010 server and not worry about moving anything to the 2013 server? Everything I've read leads me to believe I can just delete everything, and not worry about them... Thanks for any input.


Ric J.
ricjenkinsNetwork AdminAsked:
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StuartTechnical Architect - CloudCommented:
You are correct, these services are now dealt with outside of public folders. Only if you have a legacy Exchange environment will the availability service need to request free/busy from a public folder database. I would dismount the PF database with a view to delete presuming you have no issues/user created PF you didn't know where being used etc
Public Folders are announced to be discontinued for a longer time, as I remember beginning with 2007. But a large amount of companies used these folders in the past so it was not so quite easy to remove them from one version to the next, and they are still there... In 2013 even public folders are realized with a public mailbox, means they can be used in the old style, but the technical implementation is done by a different technique.

And as Steward said, newer Outlook clients do not use public folders anymore.  The system folders in the public folders were used by older clients only.

if you install a clean 2013 server, there are no public folder anymore by default. But you can install them again.

So, if you do not have older clients, older exchange servers, you can completely skip public folders for Outlook / Exchange.
Nevertheless, there are still some third party software products out (i.e some fax solutions or archiving solutions), which still expect public folders.

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