Exchange 2010 FAQ: How Do I Migrate Public Folders to Exchange Server 2010?

For most Exchange Server organizations migrating public folders is as simple as moving replicas from one server to another.  This can be achieved using one of two methods:

  • Moving all Public Folder replicas using the Exchange 2003 System Manager console
  • Moving all Public Folder replicas using the Exchange 2010 Management Shell

Either method will work in just about any scenario, it just comes down to which one you’re most comfortable using.

Moving all Public Folder Replicas to Exchange Server 2010 Using the Exchange 2003 System Manager Console

In this example scenario the public folders hosted on the Head Office Exchange 2003 server are being moved to the Head Office Exchange 2010 Mailbox server.

As with mailbox migrations public folder migrations can generate heavy disk I/O on the source server, and will generate a lot of transaction logging that consumes free disk space on the target server.

On an Exchange 2003 server open Exchange System Manager. Navigate to the server that currently hosts the public folder replicas, and browse to the public folder Instances folder of the public folder database.

Note the public folder instances currently on this server.

Public Folder Instances shown in the Exchange 2003 System Manager console
Public Folder Instances shown in the Exchange 2003 System Manager console

Right-click the public folder database and choose Move All Replicas.

Move all Public Folder Replicas
Move all Public Folder Replicas

Choose the public folder database to move the replicas to.

Choose the database to move the Public Folder replicas to
Choose the database to move the Public Folder replicas to

A warning appears that the move may take a lot of time depending on the amount of public folder content to be moved.  Click OK to begin.

Note that moving Public Folder replicas can take some time
Note that moving Public Folder replicas can take some time

You can refresh the public folder instances folder to monitor progress.  This operation can take some time, even for a small amount of public folder content.  When the public folder instances displays an empty list the operation has completed.

All public folder replicas have been moved
All public folder replicas have been moved

Moving all Public Folder Replicas to Exchange Server 2010 Using the Exchange Management Shell

Public folder replicas can also be moved using the Exchange Management Shell.  In this example the public folders hosted on the Branch Office Exchange 2003 server will be moved to the Branch Office Exchange 2010 Mailbox server.

On the Exchange 2010 server open the Exchange Management Shell.  Navigate to the scripts folder of the Exchange installation folder.

[PS] C:\>cd $env:exchangeinstallpath\scripts

Microsoft has supplied a PowerShell script called MoveAllReplicas.ps1 for moving public folder replicas.  Run the script with the following parameters:

  • -Server is the name of the Exchange 2003 server
  • -NewServer is the name of the Exchange 2010 server

Note that this is a single-line command run from the folder containing the scripts.

[PS] C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\V14\scripts>.\MoveAllReplicas.ps1 -Server ESP-BR-DC -NewServer ESP-BR-EX2010

You can use the same method as with the Exchange System Manager console technique to determine when all replicas have been moved.

Comments

  1. Adam Heusdens says

    I recently went through these steps and most all public folders moved from my Exchange 2003 to the Exchange 2010 server within the first hour but I have 5 left that are not moving. Size wise, they are much smaller than the others that have already moved. Any ideas on what I should do to troubleshoot why these last few aren’t moving?

    • says

      Hi Adam, that happens to me nearly every time :-)

      You can turn up diagnostic logging and start looking at replication events to see what is going wrong.

      Or if you’re 100% sure that the content has replicated successfully you can just remove it using ADSIEdit.msc. This article describes it for Exchange 2010 but it should be enough to help you find the way:

      http://exchangeserverpro.com/exchange-2010-remove-public-folder-database

      Use with caution of course, make sure you’ve got a backup and rollback plan :-)

      • Adam Heusdens says

        I did this and in turns out it just needed more time that had the patients for as I gave it a few days (even though there was not a lot of data) and it finally all moved over. Thanks for the help.

  2. Jaromir Sedlak says

    I am migrating SBS 2003 to SBS 2011 and I am facing the following problem:
    when trying to move all public folders form old to new server, after selecting “Move all replicas” a dialog list appears, but the drop-down list of available servers is EMPTY …

    Do you have any idea how to add the new server to the list ?

    Many thanks!

  3. Ehsan says

    Thanks Paul

    it means I can go ahead and move publice folder from exchange 2003 to exchange 2010 even when the systems is in production

  4. Ehsan says

    we have 2 Mailbox server (Exch1,Exch2) exch1 is passive and Exch2 is presently active I need to move OAB which server should I select to move OAB

  5. Ehsan says

    is this necessary to move public folders if we are not using public in our organization in exchange 2003

    there are several folder that were created by system or if any specific folder need to migrate please let us know

    Thanks for all your help

  6. Zay says

    Just so I am clear, I am doing a migration (or is it Transition?) from 2003 to 2010. On the 2010 server, I created a new Public Folder database, once that is done, do I just follow the steps above to move all the public folders, and their contents to the new PF database on the 2010 server? Also, since we are the coexistence stage, should I do this now (I want the users on 2003 will still have access to the PFs), or wait till the all users have been moved to the new 2010 server?

    PS, I know you created a book that goes thru the steps for migrating from 2003 to 2010, does cover how to move multiple (I mean like 100’s) public folders at once?

  7. Waldo Perez says

    Well, I had the same problem, but this gave me some ideas… I endup goind to the Public folder structure and changed the view to see the system folders and then deleted since I had moved everything already and all seems to have been moved… Make sure all data has been moved… You will then be able to refresh the Public Folder instances and it showed empty… I was then able to remove the last public folder db… hope it helps…

  8. baqar says

    hi paul
    i have migrated exch 2003 to 2010 while migration exch 2010 automatic created public folder which i cannot remove,& outlook users giving offline address book error 0x8004010f ,out of office assistant also not working.

  9. Omar says

    Paul, I’ve migrated all users and moved all Public folders to 2010. All users now are in Exchange 2010 and using Outlook 2010. Under one of the Exchange 2003 servers I have a public folder instance “Schedule+ Free Busy Information” which did not move although under the replication tab I do have one of the 2010 mailbox servers. I’m unable to move or delete this folder instannce so I can’t delete the Public Folder database thus I can’t remove the server. Any ideas?

  10. El Hefe says

    Hi Paul,
    Im trying to migrate the Public Folders from 2003 to 2010 and I keep getting the error:

    There is no such object on the server.
    Facility: LDAP Provider
    ID no: 80072030
    Exchange System Manager

    I’ve checked the security groups and they are in the correct OU. One thing thing I did notice was that OWA on the 2003 box isnt working.

    Thanks.

  11. Mike says

    I have a customer who has about 8900 public folders. I started the migration from SBS 2003 to SBS 2011 on Friday and the onyl thing left is the public folders. I keep looking at the public folders instances folder and nothing has changed. I did notice that there are a lot of messages getting stuck in the “Messages with unreachable destination queue” that refer to public folder.

    Is this something I need to be patient for and jsut wait, or os there something else I need to be looking for.

    I have had about 5 hours of sleep over that past couple of days, so if I forgot anything, it wouldn’t be to far fetched.

    • says

      You may be missing the routing group connectors between the two servers.

      On the SBS 2011 server open the Exchange management shell and run Get-RoutingGroupConnector. You should see two, one for each direction. If not then that is probably the problem, and you can create new ones with New-RoutingGroupConnector.

  12. Thuizt says

    Hello,

    After a successful mailbox migration decided to move the public folder calendar. Total size < 5 MB.
    Didn't worry to much about it.
    Choose move all replica's but nothing seems to happen
    Public folders is empty
    Public folder instances lists my calendar (and others even smaller)
    On the Exchange 2010 there is nothing to see in the public folders.

    Where to see what's happening ?
    Users cannot access the public calendar and don't see anything in the public folder list on the new server.

    Any help greatly appreciated

  13. JIm says

    I am transitioning from Exchange 2003 to Exchange 2010 and I am facing the following problem:
    when trying to move all public folders form old to new server, after selecting “Move all replicas” a dialog list appears, but the drop-down list of available servers is EMPTY …

    Do you have any idea how to add the new server to the list ?

    I have had mailboxes moved and in production since July just cant seem to get PF’s moved.

    Thanks!

  14. Ravi says

    Hi Paul,

    We are an organization in the migration phase. Right now we are facing issues in public folder access from outlook 2010. The links/hyperlinks are not at all working. Is there a better way to make public folder access smooth. Users are not able to access public folder links sent within the organization.

    We are migrating from exchange 2003 to 2010.

    Regards

    Ravi

  15. David M says

    Does this script actually copy anything other than the folder structure?

    From what I can see, it COPIES the folder structure to the target server and leaves the folder structure on the source server.

    No data is moved: no emails from the mail-enabled public folder, no contacts from the contacts folder.

    Each server shows itself and itself alone as having a replica (in the EMC, in properties on each public folder and in the EMS with the Get-PublicFolders cmdlet)..

  16. David M says

    Yes, similar experience to that of Thuizet in his Jan 10, 2013 post.

    Exchange 2010 public folders are empty when accessed via Outlook.

    In my case, I *do* have the folder structure though, just not the content (emails, contacts) inside.

  17. Shaun VT says

    Hi there.

    I’m in the process of a test lab mograting from exchnage 2003 to Exchange 2010.

    i always get as far as the last part of removing the exchange 2003 server and I somehow break it :)

    Its the public folders that are getting to me.

    There are so many blogs that say you must first run the Addreplica script and then wait till replication is complete and then run MoveAllReplicas script.

    In your blog here you just say you can use the MoveAllReplicas script.

    So my question is do i just run the move all replicas script as mentioned or do I have to use the Addreplicas 1st and then wait for replication to complete until I use the MoveAllReplicas ?

    Thanks very much..

    Shaun

  18. Thomas says

    Hi Paul,

    I’m trying to migrate the public folders and I’m at the part where it says Dismount Mailbox and Public Folder. I dismounted the Public Folder database in Exchange 2003 but after that, I can’t access the Public Folders in Outlook.

    So I skipped that part, and continued on to the rest of Public Folder migration instructions, but still fail to see Public Folders in Outlook when I dismount the Public Folders database in Exchange 2003.

    How should I proceed?

  19. Thomas Jones says

    Hi Paul

    We have completed the Exchange Server 2003 to 2010 Migration Guide. We are up to page 210; Deleting the Public Folder database.

    We have tried to delete the Public Folder database and we receive the following error “You cannot delete this public folder store because it contains replicas…”

    There is still one folder in the Public Folder Instances on Exchange 2003 which is replicated to our Exchange 2010 server. We have completed the move all replicas however this folder still remains. On Exchange 2010 the public folder contains the correct amount of objects and it also copes when we disable the Public Folder Database on Exchange 2003.

    I am guessing the only way we are going to be able to delete the Public Folder Database is if we ‘Remove Replica’ however I do not want to this to cause us to lose any information in the Exchange 2010 Public Folder Database if they are still replicating.

    Please can you confirm what the next step is and if we are able to remove the replica without causing an issue?

    Thank you

    Thomas Jones

  20. Marcus says

    Hi Folks,

    I had this issue too, waited a week for PFs to replicate but still have 3 remaining.

    In Instances, under Properties of each PF, I set the replication to ‘Urgent’.

    Refreshed the view a couple of times and hey presto they disappeared.

    Hope this helps someone.

    Cheers
    Marcus.

  21. Nino Iaccarino says

    Hi Paul,

    Thanks for your articles, always a big help !

    I am having this same problem trying to properly decommission my 2003 Exchange Server. I moved all replicas to our 2010 box like in your article, and have a Public Folder database up and running fine there too. However, have one last Public Folder Instance stuck in my 2003 box which I cannot get rid of.

    Previously up the page, you have advised users to use ADSIedit to get rid of it if you are sure all data has been replicated (Which I am sure it has) but you give reference to removing it from a 2010 Exchange Server.

    What am I missing here ? I am trying to get rid of the last remaining Public Folder Instance from my 2k3 box, not my 2010 box.

    Any help or clarification is much appreciated!!

    Kind regards,
    Nino

    • Nino Iaccarino says

      Nevermind, I found a solution to my particular scenario. Below if it helps anyone else. Thank for your help !!

      It may be because of the instances of public folders on that public folder.

      A. Launch EMS

      b. Administrative Groups>Front End server>Public store>Public Folder Instances

      b. In the right-pane, find “Folder Path” column, paths of system folders

      c. Expand Administrative Groups>Folders>Public Folders, right-click “Public Folders”, select “Connect to”, choose Front End server, click OK

      d. Find those system folders which listed in the “Public Folder Instances” node, right-click the folders and delete them

      e. After we remove all instances, the public store can be removed

  22. says

    Thanks Paul for your “Exchange Server 2003 to 2010 Migration Guide”, I bought mounts ago but I’m migrating only now. I’m testing public folder access (page 151) but I got an error like “cannot find public folder you are trying to access”. Am I missing something? It seems that public folder referrals does not work. Any idea?
    Again, thank you very much for the book.

    Kind regards
    Marco

  23. Ron Sprafka says

    Thanks for this guide Paul! This is slick and works great! However, I think a backup ran during the move I was running last night and seemed to have stopped the move. It’s been 12+ hours and there are 9 folders that have not moved at all. Some of them are bigger, but given the speed with which the move was progressing prior I don’t think it should have taken this long. If it did kill the move, how do I proceed? Should I just start the move again, or will that overwrite what’s already there? Any answer would be very helpful.

    Cheers,
    Ron

    • says

      There have been times where I’ve initiated the move all replicas more than once to try and unstick a stuck migration. Sometimes it worked. Other times I had to roll up my sleeves and start investigating further.

      • Ron Sprafka says

        So, I’ve tried to initiate the move a few times again to unstick the stuck move to no avail. What would you recommend next as far as “rolling up my sleeves” then? Any help will be greatly appreciated.

        • jbanks says

          We’ve actually had the same issue. We were trying to migrate the folders and they got stuck. We ended up stopping the migration and started the replication/migration process over using PFadmin/ExFolders and replicating in smaller chunks.

          We do have one weird symptom. When we stopped the migration, there are some folders that no longer have content on either the original or new server. Have you seen this? We have backup, but I’d like to know what might cause this issue in case we run into it again.

          btw, your site and migration guides are a huge help!

        • says

          The PF content is basically moved through Transport. I guess if something goes wrong in that process you might lose content… I haven’t run through this process in a while though so it’s hard for me to say at this point.

  24. Tony T. says

    I’m trying migrate from SBS 2003 with Exchange to Exchange 2010 (no SBS). When I try to move my public folders, “move all replicas” through ESM I get the following error: “The available memory is insufficient. Close some applications or windows, and try again. ID no: c10306a7″ I have tried using Exchange management PS on the new server with this command: ” [PS] C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\V14\Scripts>.\MoveAllReplicas.ps1 -Server ESP-BR-DC -Exchsrv10 ESP-BR-EX2010″ and I receive this error: “C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\V14\Scripts\MoveAllReplicas.ps1 : A parameter cannot be found that matches p
    arameter name ‘Exchsrv10′.
    At line:1 char:51
    + .\MoveAllReplicas.ps1 -Server ESP-BR-DC -Exchsrv10 <<<< -ESP-BR-EX2010
    + CategoryInfo : InvalidArgument: (:) [MoveAllReplicas.ps1], ParameterBindingException
    + FullyQualifiedErrorId : NamedParameterNotFound,MoveAllReplicas.ps1"

    Any help would be very useful. Thanks

  25. LeBricoleur says

    Hi Bonjour

    I m migrating public folder 2010 to 2013

    When i do :

    Get-PublicFolderMigrationRequest | Get-PublicFolderMigrationRequestStatistics -IncludeReport | Format-List

    I have a lot of line like this

    00-00-00-00-1A-44-73-90-AA-66-11-CD-9B-C8-00-AA-00-2F-C4-5A-03-00-36-B9-C6-5D-38-99-D6-11-9B-D6-00-08-02-55-A6-70-00-00-00-18-33-94-00-00 ». Ce dossier peut être
    lié manuellement en exécutant la cmdlet Enable-MailPublicFolder une fois la migration terminée.
    23/05/2014 19:18:02 [serveur] Avertissement : échec de recherche ou de liaison de l’objet destinataire « 96-7D-85-6C-DC-A6-83-42-AC-77-A4-5E-BD-CD-52-9B » dans
    Active Directory pour le dossier public à extension messagerie « Public Root/IPM_SUBTREE/Secrétariat RC/PAYS/VENEZUELA/2006/SINCOR » avec l’ID d’entrée «
    00-00-00-00-1A-44-73-90-AA-66-11-CD-9B-C8-00-AA-00-2F-C4-5A-03-00-36-B9-C6-5D-38-99-D6-11-9B-D6-00-08-02-55-A6-70-00-00-00-13-4D-8A-00-00 ». Ce dossier peut être
    lié manuellement en exécutant la cmdlet Enable-MailPublicFolder une fois la migration terminée.
    23/05/2014 19:18:52 [serveur] Avertissement : échec de recherche ou de liaison de l’objet destinataire « 25-86-EC-2D-ED-25-C6-49-83-B6-5F-E9-8C-2E-34-A4 » dans
    Active Directory pour le dossier public à extension messagerie « Public Root/IPM_SUBTREE/Secrétariat RC/Repertoire 2007 » avec l’ID d’entrée «
    00-00-00-00-1A-44-73-90-AA-66-11-CD-9B-C8-00-AA-00-2F-C4-5A-03-00-36-B9-C6-5D-38-99-D6-11-9B-D6-00-08-02-55-A6-70-00-00-00-11-F5-9D-00-00 ». Ce dossier peut être
    lié manuellement en exécutant la cmdlet Enable-MailPublicFolder une fois la migration terminée.
    23/05/2014 19:18:57 [serveur] Avertissement : échec de recherche ou de liaison de l’objet destinataire « ED-80-51-1F-67-6A-B9-41-AA-B8-0C-14-C4-BF-07-A3 » dans
    Active Directory pour le dossier public à extension messagerie « Public Root/NON_IPM_SUBTREE/EFORMS REGISTRY/Organization(409) » avec l’ID d’entrée «
    00-00-00-00-1A-44-73-90-AA-66-11-CD-9B-C8-00-AA-00-2F-C4-5A-03-00-36-B9-C6-5D-38-99-D6-11-9B-D6-00-08-02-55-A6-70-00-00-00-00-1F-49-00-00 ». Ce dossier peut être
    lié manuellement en exécutant la cmdlet Enable-MailPublicFolder une fois la migration terminée.

    it scared me, what does it means ? Do i do something wrong?
    I have let it work
    And when i check status i have this :

    Statut: Failed
    Détails status : Failed other
    Syncstages : Copying message
    Estimed transfert size : 0
    Pourcentcomplete : 95

    What do i do? Can You help me? I m a little scared right now

    Thanks

  26. Rais says

    Good Day ,

    I followed the steps one by one and now is three days I saw nothing happen the folders not moved to exchange 2010 SP3 . or I need to wait more time .
    any idea how I can know what happen Will be thankful if you can help .

    Regards

    • Rai says

      when I went to Public Folder Management Console I found the folders synchronised but inside this folders is empty without Files I don’t know why ?
      when I check in the Event I found this: MSExchange Store Driver 1020 Event

      Description:
      The store driver couldn’t deliver the public folder replication message “Backfill Request (exchange2003-IS@domainename)” because the following error occurred: Property: [0x3ff00102] , PropertyErrorCode: UnknownError, PropertyErrorDescription: 0x80040107..

      I found this http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2855083 but if I install This update have any impact in my environment exchange2010 .

      Regards

  27. Erik says

    Hi Paul,

    I recently migrated all public folders moved from SBS2003 to the SBS2011 Standard, but have a single item left in Public folder instances that are not moving. The item in question is a single calendar placed as item as follows:

    1. Bookings
    1. Meeting room
    2. Car

    Only the “Meeting room” remains in SBS2003 Public Folder instances list. Looking at the item, I found the Owner assigned to a “NT USER SID 1- ….” I assume this is a previous employee, no longer with the company. I fixed the Owner by “Adding” an administrator account as owner. Replication status, however, remains stated as “Number of replicas 2 – both modified” and it is not moving.

    As there are almost no content in the “Meeting room” calendar, I would like to delete it, and then create a new calendar after the SBS2003 has been removed from the domain. Right clicking on the “1. Meeting room” however, I noted that the delete option is greyed out.

    Can you advice best way to remove the Meeting room item without breaking or harming the pending removal of the SBS2003, my MS-21-day deadline for decommission is getting very close :-). PF replicating has been running for 14+ days, so I assume it is no longer a question of just being patient and let replication take care of business.

    One additional question, can I run the “MoveAllReplicas.ps1″ to start a new move even if the “Move all replicas” has previous been started from the EMS on the SBS2003, or will this double the number og items in the SBS2011 (- or break) the relation to the PF previously moved via ESM / SBS2003?

    Thank you for all your help …

    Best regards
    Erik

  28. Hero says

    Hi!

    Im havin some issues, the migration isn’t finished yet. But i have theorically already migrated a “Contacts” Folder, but when i try to access to the migrated Folder (the only one active at the moment) i cannot see anything inside of it. Is it normal? I have to wait until it finish to see all the records in that contacts public folder.
    Thanks!

  29. i.s says

    Hi Paul

    Even so have configured public folder database over the new SBS2011 every time i try to move all replicas from the old server all i get is an empty list, i have tried to use the shell command as well and even so i didn’t got any errors it don’t look like anything happened.

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