5 Essential Administration Tasks for Exchange Server 2007

Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 offers great integration with other applications and software, such as Microsoft Outlook, Outlook Mobile Services, SharePoint, and other systems and devices.

It’s a great collaborative and messaging communication tool that offers efficiency, easy access, and ample security and protection.

If you’re going to be working with Exchange Server 2007, here are five common administration tasks that you should be familiar with.

1. Exporting To and Importing From PST Files

Exchange Server 2007 stores email data in EDB jet database files and if the contents of a users’ mailbox must be transported away from the message exchange, the only choice is to export the data into a PST file. As an administrator, you may also run into scenarios where mail data stored in a PST file needs to be imported to the message exchange.

In earlier versions of Exchange, this process was accomplished using the ExMerge tool, because Exchange Server had no native support for PST files. As of the release of Exchange Server 2007, SP1 the import-mailbox and export-mailbox cmdlets have the ability to directly import from or export to pst files.

To execute the Export-Mailbox cmdlet you must be delegated the Exchange Server Administrator role and the local Administrators group for the target server. You must also have permissions set to full access on both the source and target mailboxes. The syntax for a typical export-mailbox cmdlet would be:

Although SP1 has added direct support for PST files, there are still some limitations when exporting mail data. There is no equivalent function to export mail data using the Exchange Management Console. You cannot export data from a public folder database and you cannot export data to a PST file from a mailbox that is in a recovery storage group; when exporting to a PST file, messages contained in the dumpster will not be recovered.

The syntax for a typical import-mailbox cmdlet would be:

As with the export-mailbox cmdlet, most of the same limitations apply to the import-mailbox cmdlet with a few exceptions. When importing the contents of the transport, dumpster will also be imported if they exist in the PST file, and the mailbox to which you import the data must already exist.

2. Adding A New Mailbox

Adding new mailboxes to the mail exchange is deffinitely one of the most common tasks you will perform in the day to day administration. To add a new mailbox you can use the management console or the management shell.

The console uses a wizard which will lead you through all the steps required to create a new user account in Active Directory, and a user mailbox on the appropriate mailbox server. Here are all the steps:

1. In the Exchange Management Console expand the Recipient Configuration

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2. Click on Mailbox to open the mailbox pane and click New Mailbox – the new mailbox wizard will now open up

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3. Choose what mailbox type to create. In Exchange Server 2007 there are four mailbox types: User Mailbox, Room Mailbox, Equipment Mailbox, Linked Mailbox.

In this case, choose User Mailbox and click Next

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4. Then, select the user type in this case a New User and click Next

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5. Fill out all the required fields on the User Information page then click Next

6. The next page displays the Mailbox Settings. Modify any of the default settings as required and click Next

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7. The New Mailbox window displays a summary of the information and settings that will be applied for the new account. Click the New button to create the new mailbox

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8. On the Summary page you will see if the new-mailbox command was successful and the cmdlet used to create the mailbox. Click Finish and you’re done!

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3. Removing a Mailbox

Removing mailboxes is somewhat simpler, as there are no settings or user information to input. When you remove a mailbox the associated user account in Active Directory is also removed.

You can specify if you want the mailbox permanently removed in which case the data is deleted from the mailbox server. Otherwise the mailbox data is retained for a period of thirty days (default) and then deleted. Here are the steps:

1. Open the Exchange Management Console and expand the Recipient Configuration, then click on Mailbox

2. Select the mailbox that you want to remove

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3. Click Remove under the name of the selected mailbox

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4. Click Yes in the warning pane

A typical remove-mailbox cmdlet syntax would appear as follows:

  • Remove-Mailbox -Identity domainaccount -Permanent

4. Connecting a Mailbox

At some point you may need to reconnect a disconnected mailbox to a Active Directory user account. For example, a mailbox from a departed employee that will now be used by a new employee. To connect the mailbox follow these steps:

1. Open the Exchange Management Console and expand the Recipient Configuration then click Disconnected Mailbox

2. You will be presented with a list of all disconnected mailboxes for the local server. Click Connect under the mailbox you want to reconnect and the connect mailbox wizard will open

3. Assuming you are reconnecting a user mailbox, click User Mailbox then click next. Note that the associated account must be in the same forest ad the server from which the mailbox is being reconnected

4. On the Mailbox Settings pane, select the user that you want to connect the mailbox to

5. Set the alias for the mailbox and assign any required mailbox policies, then click Next

6. On the Connect Mailbox pane review your configuration settings and click Connect

7. The Completion pane will indicate if the mailbox was connected successfully, if so click Finish to close the wizard

5. Disabling a Mailbox

You may be required to disable a mailbox if you want a user to retain a Active Directory account, but either temporarily or permanently remove their use of the mailbox. To disable a mailbox follow these steps:

1. Open the Exchange Management Console, expand the Recipient Configuration and click Mailbox

2. Locate the mailbox you want to disable and in the Actions pane, click Disable

3. Click Yes to the warning screen and you’re done!



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