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Restore a Soft-Deleted Mailbox

Exchange 2010
 

Applies to: Exchange Server 2010 SP3, Exchange Server 2010 SP2

Topic Last Modified: 2012-07-23

A disconnected mailbox is a mailbox object in the Exchange store that isn't associated with an Active Directory user account. Disconnected mailboxes remain in the Exchange database for the duration specified in the deleted mailbox retention settings for the mailbox database. By default, disconnected mailboxes are retained for 30 days. During this retention period, a mailbox can be recovered by connecting it to a new or existing Active Directory user account.

There are two types of disconnected mailboxes:

  • Soft-deleted mailboxes   When mailboxes are moved from a Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 Service Pack 1 (SP1) database to any other database, Exchange doesn't fully delete the mailbox from the source database upon completion of the move. Instead, the mailbox in the source mailbox database is switched to a soft-deleted state. With soft-deleted mailboxes, you can use the MailboxRestoreRequest cmdlet set to access mailbox data during a mailbox restore operation. Soft-deleted mailboxes are retained in the source database until either the deleted mailbox retention period expires or until the Remove-StoreMailbox cmdlet is used to purge the mailbox.

  • Disabled mailboxes   When a mailbox is disconnected or removed using the Disable-Mailbox or Remove-Mailbox cmdlet, Exchange retains the deleted mailbox, and the mailbox is switched to a disabled state. With disabled mailboxes, you can recover mailbox data without having to restore the entire mailbox database. Disabled mailboxes are retained in the mailbox database until the deleted mailbox retention period expires or until the mailbox is permanently deleted. For more information, see Connect or Restore a Disabled Mailbox.

Looking for other management tasks related to disconnected mailboxes? Check out Managing Disconnected Mailboxes.

You need to be assigned permissions before you can perform this procedure. To see what permissions you need, see the "Recipient Provisioning Permissions" section in the Mailbox Permissions topic.

noteNote:
You can't use the EMC to restore a soft-deleted mailbox.
noteNote:
To create a restore request, you must use the DisplayName, LegacyDN, or MailboxGUID values to identify the soft-deleted mailbox.
  1. Use the Get-MailboxStatistics cmdlet to find the display name, legacy distinguished name (DN), or mailbox GUID of the soft-deleted mailbox.

    This example returns the DisplayName, LegacyDN, MailboxGUID, and DisconnectReason values for all mailboxes on mailbox database MBD01 that have a disconnect reason of SoftDeleted.

    Get-MailboxStatistics -Database MBD01 | Where { $_.DisconnectReason -eq "SoftDeleted" } | Format-List LegacyDN, DisplayName, MailboxGUID, DisconnectReason
    
  2. Use the New-MailboxRestoreRequest cmdlet to create the restore request.

    This example restores the source mailbox that has the display name Ayla on mailbox database MBD01 to Ayla's mailbox.

    New-MailboxRestoreRequest -SourceDatabase "MBD01" -SourceStoreMailbox "Ayla" -TargetMailbox Ayla
    

For detailed syntax and parameter information, see Get-MailboxStatistics or New-MailboxRestoreRequest.

You need to be assigned permissions before you can perform this procedure. To see what permissions you need, see the "Recipient Provisioning Permissions" section in the Mailbox Permissions topic.

noteNote:
You can't use the EMC to restore a soft-deleted mailbox to a user's archive mailbox.

This example restores the source mailbox that has the mailbox GUID 1d20855f-fd54-4681-98e6-e249f7326ddd on mailbox database MBD01 to Tony's archive mailbox.

New-MailboxRestoreRequest -SourceDatabase "MBD01" -SourceStoreMailbox 1d20855f-fd54-4681-98e6-e249f7326ddd -TargetMailbox Tony -TargetIsArchive

For detailed syntax and parameter information, see New-MailboxRestoreRequest.

After you initiate the restore request, you may also want to:

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