Importing PST files in to Exchange 2010

Posted: March 23, 2010 in Exchange Server
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Importing PST’s in to Exchange 2010 is a lot easier than it was in 2007 due to the Role Based Access Control (RBAC) feature.

Before we can import PST’s to Exchange 2010 there are a few pre-requisites and they are:

  • You must have the x64 version of Microsoft Office Outlook 2010 installed on an Exchange Server that has the mailbox role installed.  This doesn’t have to be the mailbox server that all the mailboxes reside on.  NOTE: Prior to Exchange 2007 it was not supported to have any version of Outlook installed on an Exchange Server.  With Exchange 2007/2010 Outlook 2007 and above are supported.
  • You must configure a group/user with the Mailbox Import Export Management Role
  • The PST files you are importing (if doing a bulk import) must have the same name as the Exchange Alias for the user it will be imported to
  • The Mailboxes you are importing the PST’s in to must already exist

Download and install Outlook 2010

At the moment Microsoft Office 2010 is still in Beta release.  Its expected release date is June of 2010.  So you may be a bit jumpy (I know I was) about installing a Beta product on your production Exchange Server.  You don’t need to.  As long as the Exchange Server has the mailbox role on it, it doesn’t need to be the production server, it just needs to be part of the same Exchange Organisation.  So if you have Hyper-V or VMWare available just bring up an Exchange 2010 server purely for management tasks.  This is good practice anyway.

Download Office 2010 from here:

The only product you need to install is Outlook 2010 so you can remove all the others if you wish by doing a custom installation.

Configure Mailbox Import Export Management Role

My recommendation would be to setup a group which you assign this role to and then add the users to this group.  If you will be creating a group then it must be a Universal Security Group.  Once you have your group then from an Exchange Management Shell run the following command:

New-ManagementRoleAssignment –Name “MailboxImportExport” –SecurityGroup “your_group_name” –Role “Mailbox Import Export”

At this point I would add the user you will be using to import the PST files to the group you have just created.  Then close the Exchange Management Console/Shell and logoff and back on again.


There are a few ways you can import PST files, either one by one or in bulk.  I would recommend you try one first just to make sure everything is setup as it should be and if your happy then go for a bulk import.

The commands you need to use are exactly the same for Exchange 2010 as they are for Exchange 2007.

Bulk Import Command:

Get-Mailbox | Import-Mailbox –PSTFolderPath x:\Full_Path_To_PST_Files

NOTE: The x:\Full_Path_To_PST_Files in both commands represents the actual location of the PST files

Single Import Command:

Import-Mailbox –Identity “Display_Name” – PSTFolderPath x:\Full_Path_To_PST_File.PST

NOTE: The –Identity in the single import command can be the display name, the e-mail address or the Exchange Alias.  The actual PST filename needs to be specified when doing a single import.

For guidance on exporting mailboxes from Exchange 2003 please see my other blog post here:

  1. […] Importing PST files in to Exchange 2010 March 20101 comment […]

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