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Recover items deleted using search-mailbox RRS feed

  • Question

  • For starters as I am sure everyone feels at times, I am very frustrated with what Microsoft chooses to make available as far as capabilities and administrative tools.  That complaint out of the way here is what we are doing:

    Our legal department wanted a policy that will delete mail older than 90 days from everyone's mailbox.  (it's stupid I know so just don't ask)  Microsoft's "archive" in exchange online doesn't allow for a lot of options there.  You can either archive the entire mailbox which is all items; mail, calendar, notes etc.. or delete or delete with recovery.  The delete and allow recovery would do what we need BUT we are archiving items older than 30 days for all users as a courtesy before enforcing the delete policy which come to find out the delete policy would also delete items from the "archive" meaning it is not an archive at all.  By a MS rep's own explanation the archive is an extension of the mailbox and not intended to be a true archive.  So that is dumb, don't call it an archive then.. Anyway, ok fine so I wrote up a script that performs search-mailbox and grabs only email older than 90 days and deletes it.  Perfect, that is actually better because we can leave calendar and notes alone and still have the ability to apply an archive policy to mailboxes if we choose.  Which on a side note to point out another idiotic functionality, microsoft gives you the ability to apply a retention tag to a specific default folder such as sent items BUT ONLY delete...not archive..seriously? wtf?  

    here is the issue..  Mail deleted with search-mailbox -deletecontent isn't recoverable?  even though when i run Get-MailboxStatistics user@domain.com | Select *Deleted* |fl  it shows me there are deleted items present.  The items are not visible in the dumpster as you would think they would be.

    I have searched extensively for a way to be able to recover those items if needed via powershell but there doesn't seem to be a way to do that. At least not that I have found.  I am fairly powershell savvy meaning I can find what I need online and understand it so I can modify it for what I need but am not an expert so I am hoping maybe someone better at powershell than me can help.  

    So what I want to do is this:

    delete items from a mailbox using search-mailbox deletecontent but have those items be deleted to the mailbox's dumpster rather than to oblivion so they can be recovered.  Is this possible without having to use eDiscovery?

    Wednesday, October 19, 2016 3:59 PM

Answers

  • Hi,

    Sorry for any inconvenience when using exchange server. Microsoft has been working to improve exchange server based on feedback from customers. If you have comments or questions about some topics or about the overall Help experience, we'd love to hear from you. Just send your feedback to Exchange Help Feedback. Your comments will help us provide the most accurate and concise content. Thanks for your understanding.

    For your question: "delete items from a mailbox using search-mailbox deletecontent but have those items be deleted to the mailbox's dumpster rather than to oblivion so they can be recovered.  Is this possible without having to use eDiscovery?"

    Unfortunately, it's not possible. Search-mailbox cmdlet with deletecontent will remove searched messages from source mailbox, except copying them to the target mailbox with TargetMailbox and TargetFolder parameters. To archive this requirement, I suggest to use retention policy. Under retention tag, there is a retention action "Delete and Allow Recovery" which will delete items from a mailbox, and those items will be deleted to dumpster folder and users can recover them. For more information, please refer to this document.

    https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd297955(v=exchg.160).aspx

    If you have any other problems on this topic, please let me know.


    Regards,

    Lynn-Li

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    • Proposed as answer by Lynn-Li Saturday, November 12, 2016 4:58 AM
    • Marked as answer by Lynn-Li Saturday, November 12, 2016 4:58 AM
    Friday, October 28, 2016 4:44 AM