Nov 27, 2009

Deleted A Public Folder in Exchange 2007… Now What?

You ever have a moment when you feel like your world is crashing down all around you, and there may be no possible way of coming back or surviving? Well I felt like that the other night. You see I was decommissioning an Exchange 2007 server, and I messed up on a step where you are supposed to transfer all Public Folder replicas to another Exchange 2007 server. I thought I did it correctly, but I obviously didn’t because when I uninstalled Exchange from that server ALL PUBLIC FOLDERS WERE GONE! WTF!!

I frantically tried to recover using Backup Exec 12.5, but I kept having different problems with that. The restore would say successful, yet still no public folders. I was obviously not doing that right either, but that is for another article.

I did however have a backup copy of the Public Folders EDB file, so I started scouring the net looking for a good EDB to PST program. All I could find were really expensive ones like Ontrack PowerControls and Kernel for Exchange Server. Frankly those were last resort options because of the cost.

I did find a tool from Microsoft called PFDAVADMIN. This tool saved my bacon. It works for Exchange 2000, 2003, and 2007. IT DOES NOT RUN ON WINDOWS 7 WORTH A DAMN! It also requires .NET Framework 1.1 so DO NOT RUN IT FROM EXCHANGE!

What I did was create a VM in Virtual box running Windows XP Pro. I installed .NET Framework 1.1, then ran PFDAVADMIN using my domain admin credentials.


Once connected I right clicked on Public Folders and selected “Show Deleted Subfolders”


When I did that, all of the subfolders that I accidentally deleted showed up in red. I right clicked on each one and selected RECOVER. After I did that, all public folders were restored!

Have you gone through the same thing? What tool(s) did you use to recover? Are you going through this now? Hit me up in the comments.

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