Exch2010 remove mailbox without deleting windows AD user?

In sbs2011/exchange2010 EMC, removing a mailbox requires deleting the AD user object.

we have a scenario where the windows user needs to stay as domain user eg. to use file share resources.

we could Remove in EMC and subsequently re-create as 'New Mail User' but this would break the original windows a/c?

How can we remove mailbox without deleting windows AD user?

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Will SzymkowskiSenior Solution ArchitectCommented:
In the EMC you have 2 options "Remove" or "Disable". Remove disconnects the mailbox and deletes the Active Directory account as well. Disabling the Mailbox only disconnects the mailbox and keeps the AD Account in tact. So you want to Disable the Mailbox.


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Kash2nd Line EngineerCommented:
disable the mailbox in EMC
Will SzymkowskiSenior Solution ArchitectCommented:
Kash is it really necessary to repeat what i said?

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Kash2nd Line EngineerCommented:
what is wrong with people on this forum. i have had this question open for a while and didn't see your comment in question.

Kamal KhaleefaInformation Security SpecialistCommented:
Is there anything you cant to accomplish!
Because disable or delete mailbox wont minimize the edb size will just disable the AD user
as experts "solution above"
Nick RhodeIT DirectorCommented:
As Will and Kash stated you can just Disable the mailbox and you will find that mailbox in the disconnected mailboxes space.  However if you plan on maybe connecting it back in at one point.  You might want to make sure you export a copy of the mailbox to PST of some kind.  Exchange I believe purges disconnected mailboxes by default after like 30 days.

If you go under the properties of the mailbox you should see a Limits Tab.  Check under deletion settings to view the timeframe of when it would be purged
Jay_RatansiAuthor Commented:
Looking at two scenarios & their effect on the GAL global address list:

1. Disable the mailbox : at the next update (6am or perhaps a manual force update), the Outlook address book will no longer show the disabled users?

2. Disable the mailbox and subsequently add as new Mail User : this would be possible?  at the next update (6am or perhaps a manual force update), the Outlook address book will now show the disabled users as Mail Users?

The arrangement to disable & allow access to windows domain is temporary. Eventually these users -using their own vanity domain and office365 - will be removed from the on-prem server altogether.

Thanks all for your feedback! How about assistance with my other open question!

Scott CSenior EngineerCommented:
@King2002...Even deleting the AD account and mailbox won't reduce the size of the EDB.  The resulting whitespace would still be in there to be used when needed.

To actually reduce the size of the EDB, you'd have to do an offline defrag which isn't worth the time and effort.
Jay_RatansiAuthor Commented:
Hi ScottCha,

This question is not about reducing the size of the EDB at all.  At this site, we're running Exchange2010 and the total EDB size is 90GB at most.

Nick RhodeIT DirectorCommented:
So you are trying to make sure the address does not show up in the address book?  Prior to disabling the mailbox under the 1st screen (General) in the properties you should see a little checkbox with (Hide address from GAL).  You can just check the box and then disable the mailbox so they don't get added to the GAL
Scott CSenior EngineerCommented:
Hello Jay, I know.  I was addressing the statement made by king2002 which might lead someone to believe that this or even removing a mailbox can reduce DB size.

Will gave you the solution which is what I would have put, but he beat me to it.  :-)

However, I will add that this is how it can be done in the Exchange Shell:

Disable-Mailbox -Identity "John Doe"

Disable-Mailbox -Identity "John Doe" -RemoteArchive
Kamal KhaleefaInformation Security SpecialistCommented:
For address book you can make a filter using powershell to get users with certain creteria and enabled ad account
Scott CSenior EngineerCommented:
@king2002....what question are you answering?
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