Easily Restored Disabled Mailboxes in Exchange 2016 Database

Admin | February 7th, 2019 | Exchange Server 2016

A disabled mailbox in Exchange signifies that it is no longer associated with Active Directory user account. Whenever an administrator disabled the mailbox, Exchange Server stores disconnected mailbox in the database. It only eliminates all MS Exchange attributes from its associated Active Directory account. Sometimes, the administrator required to restore disabled Mailbox in Exchange 2016.

Hence, it is possible to enable disconnected mailboxes until its retention period has lapsed. Because, once the retention time gets expired, the removed mailboxes will delete permanently. In this guide, we are going to show how to enable disabled mailbox in Exchange 2016 in an efficacious manner.

Steps to Restore Disabled Mailbox in Exchange 2016 Database

In the following section, readers will know the complete procedure to recover exchange mailbox back that is disabled from the Exchange Server in a detailed manner. Basically, the entire procedure classified into three steps. So, let’s get started!

Step #1: Find Out Disabled Exchange 2016 Mailboxes Using PowerShell Cmdlet

By using Microsoft Exchange Management Shell, one can easily get the list of all disconnected mailboxes from Exchange database. In order to get the record of disabled mailboxes, use the below-illustrated command in EMS.

Powershell command to get mailbox details

With the help of above cmdlet, the complete list of the disabled mailbox will display on the screen.

Note: While restoring the mailboxes in Exchange, first need to find the complete list of disabled mailboxes that helps administrator to check the desired mailboxes need to be restored. One Common Issue faced by while checking the list. An Administrator was not able to view the disabled or deleted mailbox list. To find out the mailboxes, you can try

Get-Mailboxstatistics -Server EXCH-MBX-01 | Where-Object { $_.DisconnectDate -ne $null } | FL

To know more about issue visit: Deleted Mailbox Not Showing In Disconnected Exchange 2010

Step #2: Reconnect Disconnected Exchange 2016 Mailboxes

Now, we need to connect the mailboxes to Active Directory account in order to restore disabled mailbox in Exchange 2016. In such a situation, when there is no account available in AD, create it first before restoring the disabled mailboxes. After that, connect the disconnected mailbox with it. Originally, there are two ways to again add the mailbox with AD user account i.e., EAC and PowerShell Method. Here, we describe both the method in a detailed way.

Method 1: Connect the Disabled Mailbox Using EAC

With the help of this workaround, one can also add the disabled ‘shared’ or ‘linked’ mailboxes with the Active Directory of user account. Now, follow the below steps sequentially and reconnect the mailbox.

1. In EAC (or Exchange Admin Center), click on Recipients >> Mailboxes.
2. After that, click on More… and select Connect a Mailbox option.

Restore Disabled Mailbox

Note: The mailboxes that are disabled on the chosen Exchange Server will appear.

3. Next, you need to select the disconnected mailbox that you wish to connect back together and click on Connect.

 soft-deleted mailboxes list

Connect Mailbox

4. A pop-up message appears on the screen that asks you to re-establish the mailbox or not. You need to click on Yes button to proceed further.

Connect Disconnected Mailbox Popup

Method 2: Use PowerShell Command to Reconnect Disconnected Mailbox

A user can restore disabled mailbox in Exchange 2016 using Exchange Management Shell by using Connect-Mailbox command. However, a user has to mention the mailbox type such as ‘Disabled’ that you are going to be reconnected. Now, this is the standard syntax that use to reconnect the disconnected Exchange mailbox.

Connect-Mailbox – Identity ‘Name_of_Disabled_Mailbox’ -Database MBXDB1 – User “Active_Directory_User_Account”

Step #3: Verify Whether Mailbox Connected Or Not

Once you have done with the above step, check that the disabled mailbox in Exchange 2016 successfully connects with Active Directory user account or not. To do this, follow any of the below methods.

In Exchange Admin Center

1. Go to Recipients from the left side navigation panel. Thereafter, navigate to the relevant section to get the list of connected disabled mailboxes.

2. After that, click on Refresh Icon to check that mailbox is listed or not.

In Active Directory

1. In AD user account, perform right-click on the chosen account whose mailbox was disabled and select Properties.

2. Under General tab section, you can clearly see the box gets an email address for the corresponding reconnected disabled mailbox.

In Exchange Management Shell

You just need to change ‘Identity’ with the user account and execute below-mentioned cmdlet.

Get-User “<Identity>”

The status of UserMailbox tells the whether the mailbox is connected with Active Directory user account or not. A user can also use Get-Mailbox command for the same.

Above method can be used while working with Exchange environment what about the mailboxes stored in Disconnected and orphan Exchange Database file. To restore and reconnect all these mailboxes, you can try SysTools Exchange Recovery Software that preview completed list of mailboxes stored in EDB File and allow you to restore again in the different live Exchange environment such as 2016, 2013, 2010 and below versions.

Closing Thoughts

To know how to restore disabled mailbox in Exchange 2013 & 2016 environment, Administrator can try PowerShell command & Exchange Administrator to manage the user’s mailboxes. An Administrator can Add, Delete and manage permission of the Exchange user’s and in the above section, we discuss some command that helps you to connect the disabled mailboxes again in production so that can be used again.