Troubleshooting: Migrating Office 365 Public Folders

October 19, 2015

Migrating Office 365 Public Folders

Not that I expect many people to have this problem, but I learned something new today. Did you know, that if you have public folders you are moving to Office 365 that exceed 50 GB, you have to wait for Microsoft to “Auto-Split” them?

Basically what is supposed to happen is you have a public folder and as it grows close to the 50 GB limit, an automated process is kicked off that will migrate some date to a new public folder mailbox. This is seamless to the end user and allows you to continue to add data. What I was doing was migrating a very large amount of data at one time. This caused the public folder to reach the limit of 50 GB in a few days. I was not moving data slowly, so the automated process did not have time to run. Since I was in a time time, crunch I needed to find a solution.

According to Microsoft, it can take up to two weeks for this process to happen. And I didn’t have two weeks. I needed it to happen, roughly — immediately — so I knew I needed to figure something out. I thought I could just create a new public folder mailbox and that would be that. The problem is, that was not working. It was still binding me to the 50 GB limit. I read that if you create a new public folder mailbox Microsoft will use it for its auto-split process. Again this did not help me.

I did a little research and found that there were two solutions to my issue. The first was to wait the up-to-two-weeks for the automated process, and the second was to run two PowerShell commands. Of course, I opted for the PowerShell commands. Here is what I did.

First I started power shell as an administrator. Then I ran the following script to connect to Exchange online via PowerShell.

Set-ExecutionPolicy Unrestricted -Force
$LiveCred = Get-Credential
$Session = New-PSSession -ConfigurationName Microsoft.Exchange -ConnectionUri -Credential $LiveCred -Authentication Basic -AllowRedirection
Import-PSSession $Session

Once connected I then ran this command (The public folder email address can be anything you wish.):

New-Mailbox -PublicFolder -Name MasterHierarchy

Once that was complete I ran this command (Again the name can be anything you wish.):

New-PublicFolder -Name PF201 -Mailbox SecondaryPFMbx

Once the commands were complete I had a new folder under my public folders. In the Exchange management console, in the Office 365 public folder mailboxes I had a new 50 GB limit. I was now able to start moving more data and effectively had a 100 GB limit to now use.

I hope you have found this helpful. If you have any questions, please feel free to post them below. Also, make sure you follow and friend us through social media at Twitter or Facebook.

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