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Backup IMAP account

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#1 panthersfan25


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Posted 23 May 2013 - 07:40 AM

Good Morning All,


We currently have our emails hosted by an offsite server, we are using Microsoft Outlook as our email program.  We currently are backing up the .pst file daily and also the entire folder that the .pst file is in.


My question is, if the email server goes down and all of the emails on the server are lost, will the .pst file we have backed up still contain all of the emails, or when it send/receives, will it be updated and the messages erased?


I want to make sure that the emails are protected in the event of a disaster.




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#2 chrisd87


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Posted 23 May 2013 - 08:06 AM

That's a question that you need to ask the email provider. Ask them there policy on email storage if a disaster happens. That's something that they can tell you better than us. As far as backing up the email locally using .pst files, to my understanding backups your local mail that you've already received. Most email accounts that are stored on the server are backed up either weekly or monthly and are saved as inbox.saved or something similar, that way they can backup your email if anything happens.


You can do a test, and see what happens. Create you an email on the email server, and let it sync to your outlook program. Then delete the email off of the email server, and see what happens on outlook. Does the email go away, or does it stay as a locally cached copy? Doing that will give you an idea of what happens to your mail if it gets deleted, does it stay or does it go... :scratchhead:


Typically your viewing the emails that are on the server through Outlook UNLESS you move them off the IMAP server to your outlook client, and then they are erased off of the IMAP account and stored locally on the pc for archiving purposes. So essentially if your email ever got erased off of the server, then the email provider would have a backup of your inbox, and could restore your mail.

Edited by chrisd87, 23 May 2013 - 08:51 AM.

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#3 sflatechguy


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Posted 23 May 2013 - 10:52 PM

.pst files store all you email and folders. Not sure why you'd want to back them up daily, but chrisd87 is right -- you will want to test those backups to make sure the files are recoverable -- and that you know how to recover them.

If you are using IMAP, the protocol is set to leave messages on the server when they are downloaded to Outlook. So unless those settings have been changed by someone in your organization, the emails are still on server. If the server goes down, the .pst files will provide a backup. If the .pst files are corrupted, you can restore the emails to Outlook from the server.

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