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How can I make a backup of an Exchange mailbox to .pst without the end user noticing (aka, not deleting/removing content from the mailbox and not notify the user at all.

Basically we have a sensitive situation where I need to be able to have a very recent backup of email without the user knowing we have a copy. I know Exmerge doesn't work with 2010, so I'm just looking for some guidance--I have about 2 hours to backup 16GB of mailbox data before some users may end up getting let go.

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A user isn't notified when you do a mailbox export, or if you used exmerge. Either way, for 2010 you need to use the new-mailboxExportRequest cmdlet in the Exchange Management Shell and specify a file path to send the PST. For example:

New-MailboxExportRequest jsmith -FilePath "\\server\Psts\jsmith.pst"

You also need to give the Trusted Exchange Subsystem read/write permissions to the folder you will store the exported PSTs.

As Judaslscariot pointed out, you also need to grant the account performing the export the Import/Export Role.

And you can get further stats on detailed progress with:

Get-MailboxExportRequest | Get-MailboxExportRequestStatistics 

Which will show you the percentage complete.

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@Top_Hat, please remove your comment, as it provides no further information then my answer. – HostBits Dec 29 '11 at 19:56
I am getting this error: The term 'new-MailboxExportRequest' is not recognized as the name of a cmdlet, function, script file, or o am. Check the spelling of the name, or if a path was included, verify that the path is correct and try aga At line:1 char:25 – Bob Crick Dec 29 '11 at 20:01
Are you running the command from the Exchange Management Shell? – HostBits Dec 29 '11 at 20:02
Nevermind, had to close the shell and reopen after giving my account access to the cmdlets. Thanks everyone!!! – Bob Crick Dec 29 '11 at 20:03
Your welcome Bob. If you want to make sure the user doesn't delete anything, remove his full access permissions on his own mailbox once he gets laid off, by right-clicking the mailbox in EMC, select "Manage Full Access permissions" and remove the "NT AUTHORITY\Self" account – Mathias R. Jessen Dec 29 '11 at 20:14

Grant yourself the Import/Export role:


New-MailboxExportRequest -Mailbox "UserToBeLetOff" -FilePath \\server\fileshare\backup_UserMailbox.pst

To keep an eye on the progress, use:

Get-MoveRequest -Identity ""

2 Hours for 16GB, your kinda in a hurry, but it should be possible, if you choose a fileshare on the Mailbox server as FilePath

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