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Using Exmerge.exe to perform Exchange EDB to PST Conversion

MS Exchange Mailbox Merge Program also known as Exmerge.exe allows the Exchange Server administrator to extract contents of mailboxes on the Exchange Server computer so that this data can be merged into the same mailbox on another computer running MS Exchange Server. This way the user is able to convert Exchange EDB to PST effectively.

Although, this utility comes with your Exchange Server CD too, but you also have the facility to download it from Microsoft Corporation's official website at- http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/en/confirmation.aspx?FamilyId=429163EC-DCDF-47DC-96DA-1C12D67327D5&displaylang=en

When you download the file from Microsoft Corporation, double click on Exmerge.exe executable. This utility prompts you to browse for a location where the files related to Exmerge.exe could be extracted. After the extraction is complete, a folder with default name Exmerge will be created at the defined location which will be containing ExMerge.exe executable.

To perform the Exchange EDB to PST conversion, double-click on this Exmerge.exe executable. Exmerge.exe will copy the mailbox data from the source server into the PST file and later merge the data in Personal Folders into the mailbox on the target server. This process is useful especially in the scenario of disaster recovery.

Merge Modes:

Exmerge offers you two merge procedures which are:

One-step Merge Process:

With the one-step merge, Exmerge copies data from the source mailbox to a PST file and then merges this data in PST into the same mailbox on the target server. For this, the mailbox on the destination server must have the similar mailbox name on the target server as well as the similar path on the source server.

However, Exmerge can also merge mailbox data with a different path and mailbox name, if this name/directory name of the target mailbox is identified in the text file.

Two-step Merge Process:

With the two-step merge process, a user can perform the following operations :

  • Merge data from server-based mailbox to PST file.
  • Merge data from PST files into a server-based mailbox.

Exmerge can work in both interactive and batch modes. While working in Interactive mode, a wizard prompts the user for information before initiating the merge process.

Whereas in batch mode, Exmerge takes all the configuration parameters from a settings (.ini) file and then by default runs without showing any user interface. This allows the program to run with the help of Windows Scheduler.

Using Exmerge.exe to extract data from corrupt mailbox

Consider a real time situation when your Exchange Mailbox store corrupts. What will you do? You can use ExMerge to recover the data that has not been corrupted. To do so, you can run ExMerge.exe against the corrupt mailbox store (if you are able to start the Information Store service). ExMerge copies and transfers the healthy data of all users on the corrupt mailbox store to PST files. You can reset the Information Store service and import PST files to a mailbox store that has not been damaged with the use of ExMerge.

Using Exmerge you can recover all the healthy data even in the situation when individual mailbox folders have corrupt messages. Usually, ExMerge has the feature of extracting all messages in mailbox to minimize remote procedure call (RPC) but when a particular message results in an error, Exmerge simply skips that messages and starts copying the messages that remain in the folder individually.

As soon as Exmerge finishes copying each message individually in the folder containing corrupt messages, the program continues copying messages in another folder until some more error occur.

Setbacks of using ExMerge.exe

Here are some of the disadvantages of using ExMerge.exe to convert Exchange EDB to PST:

  • ExMerge.exe merges folder rules only when rules are created on Exchange Server, version 5.0 or later. It does not support extraction of forms, views and Schedule data. The messages so copied tend to lose their single-instance storage and might result in increase in size of MS Exchange private information store.
  • The actual disk space indicated by the program is more because of the way messages are stored in PST files. Also, the indicated disk space required for merging data does not display the space required for any items that will be recovered from the Dumpster.
  • Exmerge is unable to selectively extract data based on date or time. Also, the utility extracts only those messages that a user deleted from the Deleted Items folder i.e. if the user permanently deleted messages from other folders, ExMerge.exe cannot extract then from Dumpster.
  • While the utility extracts and imports folder permissions, it overwrites the permission on the target folder that has permissions on the source folder.

With all these setbacks, you cannot rest assured of an efficient and flawless Exchange EDB to PST conversion tool. For the sake of safety of all your data and to ensure a flawless Exchange EDB to PST migration utility, you need to have a powerful Exchange EDB to PST conversion software by your side.

 

 

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