CRM: Migrating Public Folder Data

This article covers using Outlook to Migrate a contact folder from Exchange Public Folders to a PST File to then migrate to CRM.


A CRM client needed their contacts which were currently kept in public folders migrated to CRM. Obviously the first step is to get the contacts from Public Folders in to a format that is can be imported to CRM. So in this case we need to get the contacts to a PST file and the steps below are taken from Microsoft KB327304


Certainly, many people would first think of using Exmerge to get PST data from Exchange, however Exmerge does not work with public folders. This article does not cover the steps of migrating data from Outlook to CRM since that information is well covered elsewhere.


ExMerge does not work with public folders, it only works with mailboxes. When you use ExMerge to upgrade to Exchange 2000 or to Exchange 2003, you have to download public folders on the server that is running Exchange Server 5.5 to a .pst file on an Outlook (MAPI) client, and then publish this file on the new Exchange 2000 computer or on the new Exchange 2003 computer.


  1. Use an account on a Microsoft Outlook 2002 or Microsoft Office Outlook 2003 client computer that has administrative rights to log on to a mailbox on the server that is running Exchange Server 5.5.
  2. On the File menu, point to New, and then click Outlook Data File.
  3. Click Personal Folders File (.pst), and then click OK.
  4. Name the file Public.pst, save the file to a path that has a lot of free disk space, and then write down the location where the file is saved.

    NOTE: The .pst files have storage limits of 2 gigabytes (GB) each. For more information, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
    208480  (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/208480/ ) Description of the purpose and capacity of Outlook storage facilities
  5. Accept the default settings that are listed in the Create Microsoft Personal Folders dialog box, and then click OK.

    A new folder group that is named Personal Folders is created in Outlook.
  6. In the Outlook folder list, expand Public Folders, and then expand All Public Folders.
  7. Drag each top-level public folder that you want to export to the Personal Folders folder that you created in step 4.

    All top-level public folders and their subfolders are copied.
  8. Log off the Outlook client.
  9. From the Outlook client, use an account that has administrative rights to log on to a mailbox that is homed on the Exchange 2000 computer or on the Exchange 2003 computer.
  10. On the File menu, point to New, and then click Outlook Data File.
  11. Click Personal Folders File (.pst), locate and click the .pst file that you created in step 4, and then click OK two times.
  12. Drag the folders from the Personal Folders folder to All Public Folders in the Outlook folder list.

Jeff Loucks
Available Technology
Available Technology
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