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In an Exchange Server setup, the administrator can create multiple databases and save mailboxes in them. The mailboxes work using several rules and permissions provided by Exchange. There are ample security features that keep the mailboxes through the protective environment in the database. But the database can become corrupt due to hardware, network, or user catastrophes. So, there is an inbuilt manual technique to export the mailboxes directly to a PST file.

Exchange Server mailboxes can be exported to Outlook PST file in two different ways – using Exchange Admin Center or using Exchange Management Shell.

Note: Users must have export permissions to perform Exchange mailbox export to a PST file.

While using the Exchange Admin Center, go to recipients>mailboxes, and then select a single (or more than one) mailbox for the export. Then, click on the 3 dots and select the option Export to a PST file option from the drop-down list.

Note: The PST saving folder should be a network shared folder.

This export operation can also be performed by running a New-MailboxExportRequest cmdlet in the Exchange Management Shell. The command syntax is as below:

New-MailboxExportRequest -Mailbox <username> -FilePath <PST File Path>

The main requirements in the above command are the mailbox username and the network shared PST folder path.

But, both the processes of exporting Exchange mailboxes to PST files often experience a hurdle in the form of an error. Instead of initiating the export process, the Export option in the Exchange Admin Center or the New-MailboxExportRequest command throws this error-

Couldn’t find the Enterprise Organization container.+ CategoryInfo: NotSpecified: (0:Int32) [New-MailboxExportRequest], OrgContainerNotFoundException+ FullyQualifiedErrorId: AB0577B9,Microsoft.Exchange.Management.RecipientTasks.NewMailboxExportRequest

This error can be encountered in any of the Exchange Server version and must be resolved to continue with the mailboxes export process.

Troubleshooting the error

The error indicates that it “Couldn’t find the Enterprise Organization container.” This error can be analyzed in detail by visiting its Event ID. Exchange experts have found out that the main cause behind the occurrence of this error is that the Mailbox Import Export Role is not assigned to the user. It is a built-in role in the Role Based Access Control permissions. This Mailbox Import Export Role is the Management role provided by Exchange Server to allow the Exchange administrators to import/export Exchange mailboxes. With this, Read/Write permissions are provided to the Exchange administrator for the export of concerned mailboxes to complete the procedure.

Assigning Mailbox Import Export Role

The Mailbox Import Export role can be assigned through the Exchange Admin Center interface as well as the Exchange Management Shell.

  • Through Exchange Admin Center
    1. Login to your Exchange Admin Center using the administrator credentials.
    2. Navigate to permissions>Organization Management.
    3. Now, go to the Roles section, click the plus icon and select Mailbox Import Export option and then under Members section, add the account.
    4. Finally, click on OK to complete the Role assignment.
  • Through Exchange Management Shell
    Go to your Exchange system and run the Exchange Management Shell as an administrator. To assign the Mailbox Import Export Role, execute this command as follows.

    New-ManagementRoleAssignment -Name “name” -SecurityGroup “security_group_name” -Role “Mailbox Import Export

    Provide the bolded information in the above command as per your Exchange Server account.

    After assigning the Mailbox Import Export, it is recommended to export mailboxes command or perform the export process through the EAC.

The best solution for fixing Exchange errors

If you are not getting the desired results even after assigning the Mailbox Import Export Role and running the Export process, then there is a need for some professional solution that can resolve the Exchange error and export the Exchange mailboxes to PST file.

Kernel for Exchange Server is an EDB recovery solution to recover data from the Exchange EDB mailboxes. The software allows saving recovered EDB mailboxes to multiple platforms like live Exchange, Microsoft 365, and Outlook PST file format. Along with the regular mailboxes, users can export public folders, shared mailboxes, or archived mailboxes from their Exchange database files. Users can export specific mailboxes, folders, and items without losing the data integrity. It supports all Exchange Server versions, fixes all types of errors, and exports EDB data to PST or any other destination. Choosing this Exchange conversion tool would be a good idea if you want a hassle-free export of your Exchange Server mailboxes.

Summing Up

Exchange mailbox export to PST file is a strategy that administrators follow to keep a backup of the Exchange data. Sometimes this process gets affected if Mailbox Import Export role is not assigned to the Exchange account, which results in the annoying error. To resolve this, Mailbox Import Export role needs to be assigned.

Kernel for Exchange Server