I did a lot of research to find an answer to this question, but without luck so far.

The situation is as follows:

  • Exchange Online with EO Plan 1, E3, and E5 licenses
  • No modifications were done to Microsoft's default MDM Policy
  • Enabled Personal Archive for each Mailbox in EAC | Recipients | Mailboxes

The "Default MDM Policy" has a Retention Tag named "Default 2 year move to archive". That means each Item > 2 years old will be automatically moved to the In-Place Archive by the Managed Folder Assistant.

I also know that all Retention Tags of type "new tag applied automatically to the entire mailbox (default)" will apply to a user's mailbox and his In-Place Archive.

Means, if I would add another "default"-Tag to the Default MDM Policy and set it to "Permanently delete" after 7 years, all Items > 7 years old (either in the User's mailbox or his In-Place Archive) would be deleted.

But what happens to items in In-Place Archives, when I only have the "Default 2-year move to archive" Tag? I mean, when I do not modify the "Default MDM Policy".

Will Exchange keep In-Place Archive Items forever, or am I missing something? Also, I know I could have some kind of Hold on some/all items, but I have it not configured.

2 Answers 2


According to my research, there are some tags in the default retention policy, a DPT,a RPT, 9 PTs.enter image description here

The Default MRM Policy doesn't include a DPT to automatically delete items (but it does contain personal tags with the delete retention action that users can apply to mailbox items). If you want to automatically delete items after a specified period, you can create a DPT with the required delete action and add it to the policy.

For more details: Default Retention Policy in Exchange Online and Exchange Server

  • Thank you Joy. I was wondering, if this applies also to In-Place Archives.
    – Markus
    Oct 5, 2020 at 8:28

Can anyone confirm that a default policy tag (DPT) for deletion applies to the in-place archive mailbox? My initial testing is showing that it is not.

  • I think, according to Joy's research, a in-place archive has no DPT by default. Means, when a user deletes items in his in-place archive, they will be kept for a while in the invisible recoverable items store and will then be permanently deleted. If you want to have an immutable archive, you have to put the whole mailbox on-hold.
    – Markus
    Oct 23, 2020 at 12:28

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