Export Office 365 Mailbox to PST via PowerShell and eDiscovery

Mohit Jha | Modified: February 1, 2023 | Office 365 | 8 Minutes Reading

This is a complete guide with a step-by-step procedure to export Office 365 mailbox to PST via PowerShell and eDiscovery PST export tool as a workaround.

Table of Contents

Requirements to Export Office 365 Mailbox to PST PowerShell

Office 365 is the most widely advanced utility that is growing in such an enormous way that this gigantic cloud-based would never be able to beat up any other. But still, there is a chance that a hacker could attack your account data and delete everything.

As we all know that Office 365 doesn’t back up any of the user data in its database, that’s why users have to manually backup data. It will be a good idea to have a backup copy of all the important data on your system for such scenarios.

So, exporting Office 365 mailboxes to PST using eDiscovery is the only manual method available. However, before getting into it, lets have a quick glance at a more reliable and quick way for the same.

Quick Alternative of Export Office 365 to PST via eDiscovery: 

  • Step 1. Download & Launch the tool on your pc.
  • Step 2. Login into the tool via Admin credentials.
  • Step 3. Select the Office 365 account to export. 
  • Step 4. Choose the format as PST & select the category.
  • Step 5. Browse Location & click on Start. 

What is eDiscovery Tool and Its Needs?

Microsoft eDiscovery export tool is available in Microsoft Exchange Admin Center (EAC). Using eDiscovery for the export process not only protects against data loss but also accesses all those files in offline mode.

The eDiscovery PST Export tool will help the user to export data from Office 365 so that it is easy for the client to gain Office 365 data. The user performing method to export Office 365 mailbox to PST via eDiscovery PST export tool needs to make sure that their account is a member of the eDiscovery Management Role group.

Otherwise, the user needs to add this role to their user account. To activate Role management users need to select permissions, and double-click Discovery Management under admin roles. When the Discovery Management window appears, add then join to the group by clicking on + under Members.

Export Office 365 Mailboxes to PST Using eDiscovery Export Tool

Step 1. Login to your “Microsoft Office 365 Portal”, and navigate to “Microsoft 365 Admin Center”


Step 2. Here you need to click on “Security” from the “Admin Centers” panel.


Step 3. It will redirect and open “Microsoft 365 Defender Admin Center”. Now navigate to “Permissions” > “Email & Collaboration Roles” > “Roles” and click on the “eDiscovery Manager” role group.

Note: Ensure, you are a member of the eDiscovery Manager role group, otherwise you would not be able to use eDiscovery features. Further, you might encounter errors in exporting search results.  


Step 4. Add your account to the eDiscovery Administrator list using the Edit button, from the eDiscovery Manager role group properties pane.

Note: The Role Group has by default assigned some roles such as “Case Management”, “Compliance Search”, “Export”, “Hold”, “Preview”, “Review”, and “RMS Decrypt”. Check if Export is missing here, if yes, then ensure, you have added “Export Role” by clicking the “Edit Role Group” button.


Step 5. Next, go back to the ‘Security and Compliance’ section and click on More Resources. Now, on the Microsoft Purview Compliance Portal click on Content Search >> New Search.

[Note: If you can’t see the ‘Content Search’ option, then it could be due to the absence of eDiscovery permissions. So, make sure you set the necessary eDiscovery permissions. Also, it may take 24hr to reflect after you set the eDiscovery permissions.]


Step 6. A new window will pop up once you click on New Search. Here, you can customize all elements of content search options. You can provide the details such as the Name & description of the search, Location of the mailbox that you want to export.

[Note: Under Location, if you want to you can enable the SharePoint Site and Exchange Public option. But, it’s gonna take a little longer to complete the search process.]


Step 7. Now comes the Conditions section. Here, you can apply different filters and specify query language/ region, keywords/phrases, and conditions.

[Note: Conditions section is optional, so if you want to export the entire mailbox then don’t apply any filters.]


Step 8. Once you apply all the necessary filters and required settings then click on Submit >> Done.

Step 9. After that, the search process will run in the background. And, in the meantime, you can check the status of the search from the Search tab.


Step 10. Next, see whether the search is complete or not. Once you see the search result, click on ‘Actions’ and then choose Export Results.


Step 11. After that, you will have various options to export the encrypted files. So choose the radio button from the Output Options as per your requirement and click on Export.

[Note: If you want to avoid any confusion then don’t change the default options. Also, if you are willing to export the results as a single PST file then don’t click on Enable Depuplication option.]


Step 12. Next, the export process will start. Now, you can check the progress of the ongoing export process by clicking on the Export tab.


Step 13. After the Export process gets finished, click on the Download Results option. Then, click on the Copy to clipboard button under the Export Key section which will be further needed in the next step.


Step 14. When you click on the ‘Download Results option, the eDiscovery Export Tool will start automatically. Here, provide the Export key you saved to the clipboard and Browse the destination path for saving the export result. Finally, click on the Start button to export Office 365 mailboxes to PST using eDiscovery.


Limitation of eDiscovery Export Tool

The eDiscovery PST export tool will help the user to export Office 365 mailbox to PST format but the exact data in a mailbox that is to be exported may not be migrated. Moreover, the eDiscovery PST export tool stuck calculating, hangs, slow, failed, or missing is the most common error that hinders the work using the export PST process. So, to solve this problem, it is recommended to use automation for the export process.

PowerShell to Export Office 365 Mailbox to PST File 

It is no longer possible to export an Office 365 mailbox to a PST file using PowerShell. Microsoft has removed the ability to import or export PST files to/from Exchange Online using the New-MailboxExportRequest cmdlet.

As a result, you will need to use a third-party tool to export mailbox data from Office 365 to a PST file. 

Use Professional and Automated Tool to Export PST File from Office 365 Easily

In case the user finds any trouble with the working of the eDiscovery method, then the user can take the help of an automated tool like the Office 365 Export Tool. This utility will help Office 365 users quickly export multiple Office 365 mailboxes into PST files simultaneously. It can also export Office 365 shared mailboxes & archive folders into PST file format. The following are the prominent features provided by the tool during the export process:

    • Exports emails, contacts, calendars, tasks, archive folders
    • Category and date filters for selective data export
    • Increment feature to skip already exported data in the last attempt
    • Export Office 365 shared mailboxes using the Admin account
    • Maintains folder hierarchy of Office 365 mailbox during the export process
    • Split PST option to export small-size Outlook PST files

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Alternative Way to Export Office 365 Mailboxes to PST Format using eDiscovery 

1. Launch the tool on your machine.

2. Choose the login option ‘Is Admin’ to export multiple user account data.

3. Select the Office 365 account of users for backup.

4. Choose the Category of data export and Apply filters.

5. Browse the destination location for exported data and click on the Start button.


While exporting Office 365 mailbox to pst via PowerShell or eDiscovery PST export tool, a user needs to go through certain difficult processes that are not easy for every user. For such Office 365 users, we have also recommended a safe and reliable tool for exporting a PST file from Office 365 account. The software is more reliable and convenient to understand than eDiscovery wizard to download PST files from Office 365 effortlessly.

Frequently Asked Queries

Q. Is the alternative of the eDiscovery Export Tool or PowerShell safe to use?

A. Yes, this is considered the best alternative to the eDiscovery or PowerShell utility. It is tried and tested tool and is recommended by many experts.

Q. Is there any limitation imposed by this application?

A. No, this is user-friendly software and it does not impose any mailbox size limitation.

Q. I find the eDiscovery method complex to use. Can I use the alternative tool on my system?

A. Yes, the above tool is specially designed for users who are not technically sound to assist them to export Office 365 mailbox to PST without any difficulty.