Move/copy mail from one Exchange 365 In Place Archive to another, due to lax retention policies (full mailbox, full online archive mailbox for this user)

Mark Schneider
Mark Schneider used Ask the Experts™
Office 365 user mailbox and online archive full issue: I am the new IT manager for a company and have inherited a problem. The company has never had policies for mailbox size enforcement or archiving. I have a user with a full mailbox (49.5GB), a 180GB In Place/online archive, and ten local pst files from previous reduction attempts.

I'd like to move all older mail in to a different online archive, and free up the current mailbox and OA to function properly, be modest in size, and also establish better mail management techniques (I'll train the user in the last bit).

Plan A: I'm looking for Azure Exchange powershell commands that will move mail from the active online archive to a  new, secondary user online archive I created for him. My hope is to move all mail older than a year over to the secondary archive, which will be smaller in size than the current one, and then import the local psts in to it so that all the old emails are in one location.

Plan B: Perform the requisite tasks to switch them to the new primary and online mailboxes, leaving the original as the long term holding archive (less desirable, as I won't be able to bring all the old psts in to the almost full one).

I'm looking for powershell commands to copy from one OA to another, and optionally remove a certain date period from both main and OA.

Please ask if I haven't been clear enough about the situation or what I'm asking for. Thanks in advance!
Watch Question

Do more with

Expert Office
EXPERT OFFICE® is a registered trademark of EXPERTS EXCHANGE®
Most Valuable Expert 2015
Distinguished Expert 2018

There are no cmdlets for such operations, the closes you can get is Search-Mailbox, but that will not preserve the folder structure. Instead, you can use some EWS-based script, such as the one here:

Alternatively, you can look into the auto-expanding archives feature, which allows you to go beyond the current limits:
Mark SchneiderIT Manager


Thank you for your input, Vasil. The scripting link looks very promising, I will try it out in the next day or so. Cheers, Mark

Do more with

Expert Office
Submit tech questions to Ask the Experts™ at any time to receive solutions, advice, and new ideas from leading industry professionals.

Start 7-Day Free Trial