Public Folder Migration Issues Resolution for KB 977921 With PFDAVAdmin

The Issue

When you migrate from Exchange 2003 to Exchange 2007+ you can run into a number of problems that are due entirely to the differences in how Exchange handled public folders. One of these problems, as explained in KB 977921, is particularly annoying. The problem shows up after the public folders are replicated to an Exchange 2007/2010 server (Exchange 2013 uses a completely new system for Public Folders, and migration to it is completely different so the issue doesn’t really appear for that version of exchange). After replication, you may notice that some or all of the Mail Enabled public folders on your 2003 Public Folder console do not show up as Mail Enabled when looking at them on the Exchange 2007/2010 server.

The Cause

What happens here, which is explained in the KB article itself, is that a Public Folder property that Exchange 2007 and 2010 use to recognize a Mail Enabled public folder is completely missing. Exchange 2003 doesn’t require this property to allow mail enabled public folders, but 2007 and 2010 do, so when the replica gets moved over, the mail enabled public folders basically never get recognized properly on the new servers, so they don’t show up right. The property in question is PR_PF_PROXY_REQUIRED. This property has a Hex ID of 0x671F000B. For Exchange 2007/2010 to be able to recognize a public folder as mail enabled, this property must exist and have a value of 1.

The Solution

To solve this problem, there are a couple possible solutions. One is to mail-disable the mail-enabled public folders and then mail-enable them again. This will, however, mean that email addresses must be reapplied and all other mail properties will need to be recreated. Bill Long has a script that uses this technique to fix the problem available on his Technet blog.

While Bill’s solution is good, if there is still an Exchange 2003 server in the environment still running and holding a replica of the Public Folder databases, or if you install an Exchange 2003 server and replicate the public folders to it, you can fix this problem with a bulk operation done with the PFDAVAdmin Public Folder management tool. 

The fix here is to make sure that any public folders that have an email address have the PR_PF_PROXY_REQUIRED attribute added and set to 1. To do this, install PFDAVAdmin and connect to the Exchange 2003 Public Folder Replica of the PF Database. Technet has a good explanation of how to use PFDAVAdmin for general purposes, but I will give you some instructions on how to do this starting from the point after connecting to the Public Folder replica on the Exchange 2003 servers.

Once you are connected to the PF Replica, you will want to click on the Tools menu in PFDAVAdmin, then click on Custom Bulk Operation. This will bring up a window that looks like this:

Image

This will allow you to create a filter that can be used to look up all the mail enabled public folders in the public folder database on the server you connected to. The filter can be a little confusing to figure out, but it basically uses LDAP style syntax and the properties that are available for any public folder to determine which public folders need to be operated on. The best property to use here is the DS:proxyAddresses property, which holds the email addresses for the public folder. If this property doesn’t exist, the folder is not mail enabled. As a result, you can build a filter that only returns mail enabled public folders by entering (&(DS:proxyAddresses=*)) in the Overall Filter box above. This may look like it will return anything, but the public folders that aren’t mail enabled don’t have this property at all, so they cannot be returned with that filter.

Once the Overall Filter is filled in, you can create the bulk operation you want to do. Click the Add button under Operations to bring up a selection window to define what type of operation you want to perform. Select Other Folder Properties and click OK. Under Action, make sure Modify is selected, then click the Property selection box under Properties and select PR_PF_PROXY_REQUIRED:0x671F000B and enter 1 next to Value. Click Add to add the property change to the list of properties that will be modified by the operation. The Folder Properties Op window should look like this:

Image

Once that’s done, Click OK and your operation should be ready to roll. Before clicking OK to start the process, make sure the screen looks like the following:

Image

Now click OK and the operation will start. It will parse through all the public folders, checking for folders with email addresses and applying the appropriate property to them. When the bulk operation completes, you can initiate a replication to Exchange 2007/2010 or just wait for a normal replication to occur. Once replication completes, you will finally be able to see your Mail Enabled Public Folders in the Management tool and manage them the way you are supposed to.

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6 responses to “Public Folder Migration Issues Resolution for KB 977921 With PFDAVAdmin

  1. Pingback: Welcome! | AC Brown's IT World

  2. Hi, I know this is a old post however i would like to use this solution to change only for PF property PR_PF_PROXY_REQUIRED =1

    How do i accomplish this?

    thanks in advance.

  3. i want to modify the properties of public folders where PR_PF_PROXY_REQUIRED=”Property now found to PR_PF_PROXY_REQUIRED=1.

    So the question is how can i filter only those PF’s and apply the change and not all ?

    If i do a bulk operation by tagetting all the Public folders then it would mail enable all the public folders which i do not want to do.

    Hope it clear 🙂

    thanks

    • Yes, thanks. If you run the search as outlined, it will only find Mail Enabled Public Folders, since the property only exists on those folders.

  4. Thanks for this solution.

    This helped me out with a bunch of MailPublicFolders on Exchange Server 2010. This Servers was migrated previously from Exchange 2003 to 2010. But 2003 was already removed.

    The solution explained above can also be done with “ExFolders” for Exchange 2010 the same way. Only difference is the last screenshot. The value for “data” is not “http://schemas…..” but the value that will be changed.

    Thanks, Phil

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