Discover Exchange 2003's improved mailbox move feature

Scott Lowe discusses some of the enhancements included in Exchange 2003's "move mailbox" capability.

If you're still using Exchange 5.5 or Exchange 2000, or you're new to Exchange 2003, you might appreciate some enhancements in Exchange 2003's "move mailbox" capability. First, Microsoft removed some of the tedium from moving large numbers of mailboxes by multithreading the new move mailbox feature. Now, you can easily move multiple mailboxes at the same time, making the process move a little faster.

In Exchange 2000, you could only move mailboxes by using Active Directory Users and Computers. Under the Exchange 2003 version, this functionality is also present in the Exchange System Manager. From an administration standpoint, this is really nice as it makes Exchange more manageable from a central location. As a further improvement to the administrative side of handling of this task, Exchange 2003 also allows you to schedule mailbox moves for any time you like.

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Exchange 2003 also improves the handling of exceptions, such as corrupted items in a mailbox. You can opt to totally skip a mailbox that has any corrupted items, or you can provide a threshold below which corrupted items will be deleted and the mailbox moved. If the corruption count exceeds your threshold, the mailbox is not moved.

To move a mailbox (or mailboxes):

  • Start the Exchange System Manager
  • Expand Administrative Groups > First Administrative Group > Servers > YOUR SERVER > YOUR STORAGE GROUP > YOUR MAILBOX STORE > Mailboxes.
  • Right-click the mailbox you wish to move. If you want to move multiple mailboxes, hold down the Ctrl key and individually select each mailbox you want to move. You can also use the Shift key to select a range of mailboxes.
  • From the shortcut menu, choose Exchange Tasks.
  • On the Available Tasks window, choose Move Mailbox.
  • On the Move Mailbox window, choose the server and store to which you would like to move the mailbox.
  • Next, decide how you want to handle corrupt items.
  • If desired, provide a date and time to schedule the move.
  • Wait!

At the end of the process, you will be presented with a report outlining the success and failure of the mailbox move operation.

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