Imported IMAP Emails Are Not Syncing With Hosted Exchange

CTSLA
CTSLA used Ask the Experts™
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I have a client where we are changing email providers to Outlook in Office 365. The existing email is set up as IMAP. In Outlook, I exported the IMAP emails to a PST, deleted the account, created the new Hosted Exchange account in Outlook 2016, and then imported the saved PST file into Exchange. Initially, all the IMAP emails were hidden, but I researched that and found how to adjust the view and IMAP filter to show all emails, including the imported IMAP emails, and all seemed fine. However, I now see that the imported IMAP emails, although showing up in Outlook, do not sync, do not show in OWA, and are not imported into the Exchange account set up in their phones.

I'm assuming these emails are still marked as IMAP files and are not 'syncable' in Exchange. If this is the case, how do I make them sync and behave just like files created in Exchange?

I'm really surprised at he complexity of converting an IMAP account into Exchange. It seems to me the conversion process should be much easier, faster, and more automated than it is. But at this point, we're almost done, and I just need to get those imported emails syncing properly. Any suggestions?
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AlanConsultant

Commented:
Hi,

If all the emails are in the PST file (and I am assuming the PST file is securely backedup), then just move or copy them from the PST file into the O365 account.

I would probably create a sub-folder, and put them in there, but whatever works for you.

Alan.
Most Valuable Expert 2015
Distinguished Expert 2018
Commented:
You will need to update the folder type either via MFCMAPI or some macro: https://www.slipstick.com/developer/code-samples/change-outlook-folder-type-export/

Author

Commented:
Correction - these emails ARE syncing to OWA, but they are not syncing to his LG Fiesta 2 phone. I'm talking about the old emails - the new emails sync properly.

I've tried all methods mentioned above. I've opened the PST file in Outlook and copied emails into the folders, and they do not appear on the phone. I downloaded and ran MFCMAPI and ran it and manually changed the properties of the inbox and subfolders, and they all changed successfully, but the old emails will not sync to the phone. I created the VBA script and it ran successfully, but the emails still won't sync to phone.

Normally I'd say this is a phone issue or a phone setting, but new emails sync to the existing folders on the phone as long as they are new emails and not the ones that were created while this was an IMAP account.

Any other suggestions?
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AlanConsultant

Commented:
Have you set the phone to pull in*all* emails without restrictions on age?

If not, try that.

How to do that will depend on the specific email app you are using.

Alan.

Author

Commented:
We have the phone set to pull in 4 weeks worth of email, and the missing emails fall within that range. But it probably wouldn't be a bad idea to double check that setting. I'll find out and post back, but it probably won't be until Monday.
AlanConsultant

Commented:
Hi CTSLA,

Even if it looks okay, I suggest changing it to 'all emails' to test, and see if that fixes it.

You can always change it back later if the problem is fixed.

Alan.

Author

Commented:
Since the emails were not actually lost, and only old emails were not syncing to the phone, we've decided not to put any more time into this issue. I was just starting to get on the IMAP bandwagon, but this incident, along with another recent issue with IMAP inbox subfolders not syncing to the server, have caused me to lose confidence in the ability of IMAP to properly sync. I think from this point forward, for me, it's either Hosted Exchange or POP and I'll start issuing disclaimers about using or converting IMAP files.

Thank you for the suggestions offered on this thread. They were in fact helpful, even if I didn't get to the source of the problem.
AlanConsultant

Commented:
Hi CTSLA,

Certainly my experience is that Exchange syncs very reliably, and certainly more so than either IMAP or POP3.

It also has the advantage of syncing calendar, tasks, address book etc all in one (if required), so hard to beat at this point.


Thanks,

Alan.

Author

Commented:
Since the emails were not actually lost, and only old emails were not syncing to the phone, we've decided not to put any more time into this issue. But updating the folder type as recommended by Vasil Michev was a helpful bit of advice that did help to get the emails to show up in Outlook.

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