The Backup Manager normally recovers MS Exchange by the storage group. The recovery of mailboxes and individual mail items is done using native Microsoft instruments (Recovery Storage Groups). To automate the process for our users, we are developing a new feature called the Granular Exchange Restore. A beta version has been made available with our 16.2 release of February 2016.
The Granular Exchange Restore is accessible on all backup devices on which the MS Exchange data source is active. All MS Exchange versions starting from 2007 are supported.
How the feature works
The Backup Manager recovers user data (mailboxes, mail folders, messages, calendar items) straight to the Exchange server. New items are added up to the existing ones. None of the existing data gets removed during the recovery process so you can safely use the feature to quickly restore mail folders and messages deleted by an accident.
Step 1: Install software
Before you get down to recovery, please install the following software (if it isn’t installed yet):
- The Backup Manager vs. 16.2
- The Virtual Drive tool vs. 16.2 (the Backup Manager gets some data from it during the recovery process)
- Windows PowerShell vs. 3.0 or later (download link)
- Microsoft .NET Framework vs. 4.5 (download link)
- Microsoft Outlook 2010 or later (64-bit) that matches the version of MS Exchange you are recovering (see the compatibility table below).
The first 4 tools must be installed to the same machine where your MS Exchange server is running. MS Outlook can be installed to the same machine or to a different one.
Exchange/Outlook version compatibility table
|MS Exchange version||MS Outlook version|
|Exchange Server 2007
Exchange Server 2010
|MS Office Outlook 2010 RTM and later|
|Exchange Server 2013||Outlook 2013
Outlook 2010 SP1 with November 2012 Cumulative Update (download link)
|Exchange Server 2016||Outlook 2016
Outlook 2010 with April 14, 2015 update (download link)
Step 2: Copy libraries to a separate folder
The Granular Exchange Restore feature requires an additional set of libraries (Outlook MAPI DLLs). These libraries are supplied with MS Outlook installations (that is why you were advised to install MS Outlook at the previous step).
Please find these library files (.dll) and copy them all to a single folder, for example C:\Users\Administrator\OutlookMAPI.
We apologize for the temporary inconveniences caused by having to copy the libraries manually. In the upcoming versions all of the required files will be copied automatically. So steps 2 and 3 of the pre-recovery settings will be eliminated.
List of libraries to copy
From C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office<MS_Office_Major_Build_Number>. For example, for MS Office 2010 the path is C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office14:
From C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office<MS_Office_Major_Build_Number>\1033:
From C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\Office<MS_Office_Major_Build_Number>:
- Cultures (this is a folder with the office.odf file inside)
From C:\Program Files\Common Files\System\MSMAPI\1033:
Step 3: Update config.ini
Now it is necessary to enter a path to the folder with the libraries to the config.ini file.
- Open the Backup Manager installation folder and find the config.ini file inside (view detailed instructions).
- Create a new section in config.ini: [ExchangeGranularRestore].
- Populate the section with the MapiPath parameter.
- Save the changes and close the file.
Here is an example:
Here is how you can recover MS Exchange mailboxes with the Backup Manager.
- Start the Backup Manager on the computer where the MS Exchange server is running.
- Click Restore > Granular Exchange (beta).
- Select how the Backup Manager should access your Exchange databases:
- In the quick mode. The connection to the database is faster but some of the recent items may be unavailable for selection.
- In the thorough mode. All data is available for selection but the connection takes longer.
- In the Session time list, choose the backup session you want to recover data from.
- In the Data store list, choose the storage group to recover data from.
- Hold on till the content of the selected storage group is loaded.
- Click the user whose mail items you want to recover and then click the Top of Information folder inside (it has all of the user’s mail data). You can restore the whole Top of Information folder or refine your selection to individual items.
- Click Restore.
- When the restore process is completed, start MS Exchange and find the recovered data there.
The Granular Restore feature isn’t intended for the recovery of system data. So if you try to recover a system folder (“Spooler Queue”, “OAB” or some other), there will be an error message.
In the upcoming versions, the system folders will be made unavailable for selection.