Exchange Online mailboxes gets the secured features from Microsoft due to its multi-tier security coverage for all online data. But, there is a shared-responsibility model working behind all Office 365 data where Microsoft will provide security and user is responsible for accessibility. Additionally, the businesses have to take the backup of mailboxes to comply some industry standards and legal compliances. So, the Exchange Administrators have to take the regular backup of Exchange Online mailboxes.

In this article, we will discuss the methods to backup Exchange Online mailbox data to PST. Here we will brief both manual and automated solutions that can help you export Office 365 mailboxes to PST.

Why it is necessary to Backup Exchange Mailboxes?

There are multiple scenarios that often ask for Exchange mailboxes backup, such as:

  • To export the data to Outlook PST
  • To backup Exchange data for compliance requirements
  • To export Exchange mailboxes to Office 365 in the form of PST
  • To access the Exchange mailboxes in case of emergency

These reasons are enough to tell you why it is necessary to have a backup of Exchange mailboxes.

Business man

Instant Solution

Download Kernel Export Office 365 to PST as the instant solution to take unlimited backup of Exchange Online mailboxes to simple PST files.

Method 1: Use eDiscovery Export method to export mailbox items to PST

The eDiscovery export method is not a direct method for Exchange Online backup, but that's the only manual option you have to protect your Office 365 data or to migrate Office 365 data to MS Outlook.

Follow the steps to export Office 365 mailboxes to PST using eDiscovery Export tool (you need to have eDiscovery Mangers permissions to perform these steps).

  • STEP 1: Login to Office 365 portal and open the Office 365 Admin Center.
  • STEP 2: Click Admin Centers to expand it and click Security and Compliance.
  • STEP 3: In Security and Compliance, go to Search and investigation, and click Content Search. Click plus (+) button to start a New Search, supply a Name for the backup file and click Next
  • STEP 4: Select Search everywhere and then select Exchange. If you want to export specific mailbox data, use Custom Location Selection, click the plus (+) button and add the mailbox you want to export data from.
  • STEP 5: This step will take you through all the filtering options. In case you want to export all data, do not change the default set filters. Click Search when you are done.
  • STEP 6: Click Start Export when the Search wizard completes the background search.
  • STEP 7: Next, a pop window will appear giving several options. Choose the options and click Start Export once you are done with the settings.
  • STEP 8: Click Download exported results (under Export results to a computer) after the data export wizard finishes.
  • STEP 9: Now, you will receive a system generated the special export key. Copy this key using Copy to clipboard as you will need this in the next step.
  • STEP 10: This is the last step. Paste the copied key (from the previous step) in the space provided. Also, browse to the location where you want to store the downloaded PST files. Click on Start to begin the export, close the application once it is done. Select destination path

This method might seem straightforward, but it is very complicated to execute.

Method 2: Automated Method

If the manual method seemed complicated or didn't work for you, then we have a better solution for you – Kernel Export Office 365 to PST that saves Exchange/Office 365 mailboxes in PST file format. This is a simple and user-friendly tool.

Follow below-mentioned steps to back up Office 365 mailboxes.

  • STEP 1: Launch the software and click on Add to choose the Office 365 account. Launch Kernel Office 365 Backup
  • STEP 2: Choose the method to login to the account and click on OK. Choose method to login to the account
  • STEP 3: Enter the credentials of the Office 365 user and click on the Add button. Enter the credentials of the Office 365 user
  • STEP 4: The account will be connected to the tool. You can click on Set Filter and Migrate to find the right mailbox items. Set filter and migrate button
  • STEP 5: Choose amongst the three folders- Mailbox, Archive Mailbox and Public Folders and click on Migrate. Choose amongst the three folders
  • STEP 6: Apply the required filters to selectively save the mailbox data. Finally, click on I am OK, Start Migration. Click I am OK Start Migration
  • STEP 7: Select PST as the output format and click on OK. Select PST as the output
  • STEP 8: Provide a saving destination for the PST file anywhere in your system and select OK. Provide a saving destination
  • STEP 9: It will successfully backup all the mailbox items into a PST file. Backup process successfull

This the simplest method to export Office 365 mailboxes to PST file format.


It’s always great to backup Exchange online mailboxes to PST, as it can be very helpful in multiple situations. But, it is not that simple to backup Exchange mailboxes as the manual method is very complicated and time-consuming. In this piece of content, we discussed how you can backup Exchange online mailboxes to PST with both manual as well as an automated solution.