Server Fault is a question and answer site for system and network administrators. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I have a Microsoft Exchange server 2007 running on Windows 2003 R2. I need to search everyone's emails for legal discovery purposes. I'd like to do this in some centralized fashion with administrator rights rather than going account to account. Is there a way to do this?

share|improve this question
up vote 3 down vote accepted

You can use the Export-Mailbox command to extract messages form all mailboxes in a mailbox database, that meet your search critera. This will create a folder for each user that will contain the emails that meet this criteria. To do this, you need to run the following command from the Exchange command line

get-mailbox –Database <DB1> | Export-Mailbox –SubjectKeywords <Search Keywords> –TargetMailbox <Administrator> –TargetFolder <MyData>

The above command will search all mailboxes in DB1 for any emails that meet the search keywords critera, it will then copy these emails to folder call MyData in the Administrators mailbox. Fields marked with <> should be replaced with your own values.

For more details, have a read of this article.

share|improve this answer
Here's another helpful link – Knox Feb 23 '10 at 10:20
I tried this and I get error code -2147221233. Do I need special permissions? Do I have to take the mailbox user account (where the emails should be copied to) and put him to the group Exchange Public Folder Administrators? With which account do I have to log on when using this snippet? – testing Mar 2 '12 at 18:18

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.