Many of our customers migrating to Outlook and Exchange want to migrate the data from the old mailbox, but don’t want to fill up the Exchange mailbox with old email. Historically, the only alternative was to put the data in a PST file on the user’s computer and then open the PST file as a second message store in Outlook.
However, PST files have numerous deficiencies. They have no retention policies, they cannot be searched, they are difficult to gather for litigation support, and they are subject to total loss if they aren’t backed up. In short, their only advantage is that they are cheap to create since most users have disk space to spare.
Address Magic Enterprise PLUS added support for converting to the Exchange Personal Archive. For example, the command line to convert Thunderbird message to the Personal Archive is as follows:
addrload -m tb pst:@PA
The downsides to Personal Archives are as follows.
- They are not available through ActiveSync or BES, so cannot be viewed on smartphones.
- They do not appear to work with Hosted Exchange. (So far, we have not been able to make this work at Connected Software.)
- They cannot be opened in Outlook 2000 or Outlook 2003.
However, unlike PST files, Personal Archives can be viewed from Outlook Web Access (OWA.)
More information from Microsoft about the Exchange Personal Archive can be found at: