XADM: How to Use the Mailbox Migration Utility

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When using the Mailbox Migration Utility (Migrate.exe) from the BackOffice Resource Kit Part 2, certain steps must be performed to achieve the desired results.

More information

Procedure to Migrate Users

  1. Create mailboxes and profiles on the destination server for the recipients you are moving.
  2. Verify that your workstation is logged on using an account with at least Administrator permissions at the Site, Organization, and Configuration levels in the Exchange Administrator program.
  3. Create a profile on the workstation that can be modified by the Mailbox Migration tool.
  4. On the Start menu, click Run.
  5. Click Browser to locate the Migrate.exe file and double-click the file name.
  6. In the Control File box, type the path name and file name of the recipient's list file (.csv file) that contains the recipient's name and server. This is the structure of the recipient's file:

    <Display Name>,<Alias Name>,<Pilot Server Name>,<Production Server Name><CRLF>

    An example:

    John Doe,JohnD,GW-PILOT1,GW-PROD1 Mary Smith,MarySm,GW-PILOT1,GW-PROD1

    The file can contain any number of recipients and any combination of servers.
  7. Click Start.
When the file is found, the Mailbox Migration tool begins processing the first recipient in the file.


For each recipient in the .csv file, the Mailbox Migration tool performs the following functions:

  • Modifies the migration profile so it can open your mailbox and create a new .pst file on the workstation, and then logs on to this profile.
  • Copies all the messages and all subfolder trees in the mailbox Inbox folder to the .pst Inbox folder.
  • Copies all the messages in the mailbox Sent Items folder to the .pst Sent Items folder. You can ignore any subfolders, unless it is easier to copy everything.
  • Copies all the other folders, subfolders, and messages that you have created from the mailbox to the .pst file. Note that Custom Views, Filters, Rules, and Permissions are not copied.
  • Logs off the profile.
  • Copies the folders and messages from the .pst to your mailbox on the production server. Note that the Inbox of the new server is checked. If there are any messages in this folder, the mailbox is not migrated and an error message is generated. The Inbox is always the first folder migrated.
  • Deletes the .pst file.
  • If you click Stop, the Mailbox Migration tool continues to process the current mailbox and then stops processing after the mailbox has been migrated, or after the mailbox migration attempt fails because of errors.
  • Any errors that are generated in the process are written to an error log. This error log is specified through the Mailbox Migration user interface.
  • When all mailboxes in the recipient list have been migrated, a message appears stating that the system has completed the migration.
The .csv file will look similar to this at the completion of the process:
   SUCCESS,John Doe,JohnD,GW-PILOT1,GW-PROD1,Migrated No
   Errors,5/10/96 10:05:00
   FAILURE,Mary Smith,MarySm,GW-PILOT1,GW-PROD1,Error Copying
   Messages,5/10/96 10:09:10

If the Migration Mailbox tool fails for any reason, you can restart the tool from the same point by using the same recipient list. Each successful migration causes the entry to be deleted, therefore no duplication will occur.

To migrate single users or groups of users that were not migrated because of errors, you can create recipient list files (.csv) and run the Mailbox Migration tool again.

The purpose of the tool is to make a complete copy of the mailbox content from one server to another when these servers are in different sites and/or organizations. The utility does not assume that there is direct network connectivity between any two servers and its basic mechanism is to create a personal folder file (.pst) which contains the structure and messages of the mailbox to be copied. In addition, this tool is used to re-create rules and directory information.

The Exchange Administrator Move Mailbox command allows you to move a mailbox only between servers within the same site, whereas the Mailbox Migration tool allows you to move mailboxes between sites and between recipient containers.

For more information about using the Exchange Mailbox Migration tool, refer to the Microsoft Exchange Tools Help file (Exchtool.hlp), included with the Microsoft BackOffice Resource Kit Part 2.


Article ID: 2269375 - Last Review: October 24, 2013 - Revision: 3.0
Applies to
  • Microsoft Exchange Server 4.0 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Exchange Server 5.0 Standard Edition
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