Monday, April 25, 2016

Restoring Disabled/Deleted Mailbox in Exchange 2010 (Steps)

You might get stuck in a situation where you have accidentally deleted mailboxes in Exchange Server 2010, and now you need to restore them. The process to connect and restore mailboxes in Exchanges server is quite similar as other versions; all you need to use few cmdlets to get the job done.

But before moving ahead, we should know what is the difference between a deleted mailbox and disabled mailbox. In short, these are two types of a disconnected mailbox. And disconnected mailbox is a mailbox object in the Exchange store that is not connected with any Active Directory (AD) user account. All the disconnected mailboxes remain in Exchange server database until the mailbox retention period is over. During the period you can connect and recover any mailbox by connecting it to an Active Directory user account.

Let’s see the common difference between them-

Deleted Mailbox: Anytime when you move mailbox from one database to another database in Exchange server 2010, Exchange server doesn’t delete the mailbox on the original source but it switch the mailbox to soft-deleted state once the mailbox has been moved.  You can access the mailbox data anytime during the rendition period but once the retention period expires, it cannot be accessed anymore.

 Disabled Mailbox: Every time when you disable or remove a mailbox using Disable-Mailbox or Remove-Mailbox commands, Exchange server doesn’t delete the mailbox permanently but it switch the mailbox to a disabled state. During the retention period the disabled mailbox can be recovered without restoring the whole mailbox database.

So in the article you will go through the multiple methods to restore the disconnected mailbox in Exchange server, either you can use Exchange recovery third party software or Exchange server 2010 cmdlets to restore the mailbox manually. Let’s check it-

Solution 1:

Recovering Deleted and Disabled Mailbox using Exchange Recovery Software
I suggest you try out Stellar Phoenix Mailbox Exchange Recovery software to restore deleted and disabled mailboxes. You can download Exchange mailbox recovery software by visiting the official download page:

The primary reason why you should prefer this solution over cmdlets because the below cmdlet doesn’t work if mailbox is corrupt. You can only use the below procedure if the deleted mailbox in not corrupt. However, if the deleted mailbox is corrupt, not cleanly shut down, or didn’t get restored using the cmdlet; you can always use this software to repair and restore them on live server. This utility not only allow you to restore or recover accidentally deleted/ disabled mailbox, but also allows repairing corrupt mailboxes and then restore them to targeted user’s mailbox on Exchange server.

Using the Shell Commands to Restore a Deleted Mailbox

Soft-deleted mailbox cannot be restored using Exchange Management Console (EMC) in Exchange Server 2010. Check here what Mailbox Permissions are required to restore mailbox using PowerShell.

First, run the below cmdlet to display the list of all the deleted and disabled (disconnected) mailbox.
Get-MailboxDatabase | Get-MailboxStatistics | where {$_.DisconnectReason -ne $null} | ft displayname,database,disconnectreason -auto

Now run the command to use New-MailboxRestoreRequest to create the restore request. For example, you’ve found the Thomson mailbox as soft-deleted mailbox by executed the above command, and you have to restore this mailbox on mailbox server MyDatabase to Thomson’s mailbox.

New-MailboxRestoreRequest -SourceDatabase "Mydatabase" -SourceStoreMailbox "Thomson" -TargetMailbox Thomson

And if you want to restore mailbox to Thomson’s achieve mailbox, run this command-

New-MailboxRestoreRequest -SourceDatabase "Mydatabase" -SourceStoreMailbox "Thomson" -TargetMailbox Thomson -TargetIsArchive

That’s it! So it is procedure to restore a soft deleted mailbox in Exchange 2010 server. Now check the steps to restore disabled mailbox.

How to Connect and Restore Disabled Mailbox to a User Account in Exchange 2010

For e.g., you have found a disabled mailbox Alen and you have to reconnect Alen’s mailbox to his existing Active Directory account. Run this command-

Connect-Mailbox -Identity "Alen" -Database MyDatabase -User Alen

You can monitor the current process status by running this command-


Rest of the procedure is same as we have done above while restoring deleted mailbox.

So this is the step-by-step procedure to restore disconnected mailbox in Exchange Server 2010. And in case if you face any difficulty with cmdlets, you can always follow the first solution and use Stellar Phoenix Mailbox Exchange Recovery software to get the job completed without any hassle.

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