Export Office 365 Mailbox to PST Using eDiscovery, PowerShell and Outlook

Written By Mohit Jha
Anuraag Singh
Approved By Anuraag Singh  
Published On May 14th, 2024
Reading Time 18 Minutes Reading

Summary: If you looking to export Office 365 mailbox to PST then go through this write-up. The following write-up discusses the process for Office 365 exporting mailbox to PST including all mailbox attributes such as emails, contacts, calendars, etc. locally. Go through the guide and you will get to know about different approaches to perform this operation.

Exporting an Office 365 mailbox to a PST (Personal Storage Table) file is always a useful way for a variety of reasons, such as creating local backups, archiving cloud data, or migrating data to a different email platform. Additionally, PST files are commonly used for archiving and transferring email data between different email clients, such as Microsoft Outlook.

However, it can also be quite a technical process, although it’s essential to follow the correct steps to ensure that all data is exported correctly. There are a few ways to carry out this task. One popular method is to export PST from Office 365 admin center using the eDiscovery, which can be used to export PST files. However, users have reported encountering errors while using this tool such as Office 365 export mailbox to PST request failed with status code 500

Another commonly searched query is – how to export PST from Office 365 PowerShell commands. However, there is a misconception that by using PowerShell commands one can download Office 365 mailbox, contacts, and calendar to PST. In reality, there is no such method available. Hence, in this article, we are going to provide a step-by-step solution for resolving these errors and going to answer the user queries such as “How do I export my Office 365 mailbox to PST?”

By the end of this article, you will have a better understanding of how to export Office 365 mailbox to PST files using both manual methods and by using a free professional tool. Additionally, we will also discuss some best practices for exporting and importing data, including how to ensure that your data remains secure throughout the process.

Why Do We Need to Export Exchange Online Mailbox to PST in Office 365?

Generally speaking, I am a huge fan of exporting Office 365 mailboxes to PST file format when needed to create PST from the Office 365 mailbox. See below how exporting Office 365 Online will help you in different scenarios:

  • A critical situation where you need to archive Office 365 mailbox to PST data for Legal / Audit purposes
  • An Office 365 admin account got hacked by an anonymous person or group
  • Not Depending only on Microsoft to control your data
  • Want to keep Mails & Documents for a longer period
  • Data Loss due to accidentally deleting O365 account items
  • Permanently delete an O365 User or Ex-Employee account
  • The requirement to backup Office 365 shared mailbox to PST
  • Cloud Ransomware attacks result in the encryption of business account data

Exporting data from Office 365 to PST is a great solution, that will help a particular user or admin of an organization to avoid or overcome the above situations.

What are the Different Ways to Export Office 365 Mailbox to PST? 

Microsoft has not designed any specific tool especially to export mailbox data and other items to PST format (like New-MailboxExportRequest) command. However, these are a few ways that we can use to perform this task easily. These include eDiscovery, PowerShell, and Outlook

So, eDiscovery Content Search becomes a prime manual approach available for the O365 admins to export Office 365 Exchange Online mailbox data. This will enable users to download and protect their Outlook 365 Online data.

Requirements to Use eDiscovery Content Search to Office 365 Export Mailbox to PST From Admin Center

  • Access to Discovery Management Group.
  • To Export search results to PST-needed Windows 7 OS or later.
  • Needed Microsoft .NET Framework 4.5 or later must be installed.
  • The latest version of Internet Explorer or others must be installed.
  • Permission must be assigned for Office 365 OWA export to PST.

Below elaborated step-by-step solution for the Admin to export PST from Office 365 Webmail using the eDiscovery PST Export Tool.

Important: eDiscovery can also be used to export on-premises Exchange 2016 / 2013 mailboxes.

Method 1. Export PST from Office 365 Mailbox Using eDiscovery From Microsoft 365 Admin Portal

Step 1. First, you must log into your Office 365 account and launch the Microsoft 365 Admin Center.

Login to Admin Centre

Step 2. From the Admin Centers portal, to export PST from Office 365 security and compliance, click on the Security and Compliance option.

export o365 mailbox to pst

Step 3. Under the Security and Compliance section, select the Permissions option and Drag it to eDiscovery Manager.

Take permissions

Note: Now, to access various eDiscovery features, it is important to be a member of the eDiscovery Manager role group.

Step 4. After that, check the box beside eDiscovery Manager, Next Edit icon to add the important roles that are required for the Discovery Management group.

Step 5. Generally, the role group is assigned to the following roles i.e., Case Management, Compliance Search, Export, Hold, Preview, Review, and RMS Decrypt.

Step 6. Suppose, the Export role is missing, click Edit role group and add the same.


edit role group


Step 7. Now click on the “More Resources” option and open the “Microsoft Purview Compliance Portal”. Navigate to “Content Search”, and click the “New Search” option.

Note: If the “Content search” option is not available for you then, make sure, you have set the required eDiscovery permissions. Furthermore, changes in eDiscovery permissions can take up to 24 hours to reflect.


Step 8. When you click on  “New Search”  then a wizard will appear, that will let you customize all elements of content search options. You can specify the name and description of the search. The second option i.e. “Location” allows you to specify which mailbox data you want to export.

Note: If you will select all locations including “SharePoint Online” and “Public Folders Database”, then it might cause the tool to take a long while to export Office 365 mailboxes to PST and to complete the entire search.


Step 9. Now in the next part of the Search customization, you get the “Conditions” tab, which allows you to apply several different filters like; query language/region, keywords/phrases, and conditions, including those related to time, message fields & properties, etc.

Note: If you want to export entire mailbox data, then do not apply any conditions or keywords.


Step 10. Once, all the required settings and filters are applied then you can click on the Submit button and click on Done to close this window and start your search instantly.

Step 11. Now the Search will be running in the background – in the meantime, you can also check the status of your Search by clicking on the Search tab.


Step 12. On the next screen, you can easily see whether the search is complete or not. If yes then click the “Actions” button and choose the “Export Results” option.


Step 13. In this window, if you want to export encrypted files then you can include the encrypted files option. You can also customize the export results. It is suggested to export the results with default settings to avoid any confusion. Once, all the required settings are applied then click on the “Export” button. 

Note: If you want to Export the search results in a single PST file then do not the “Enable Deduplication” Option.


Step 14. The export process will start immediately. Navigate to the Export tab and select your Search again to see the progress, whether it is completed or in process.


Step 15. Once, the export process gets finished then you can click on the “Download Results” option. Make sure to copy the unique “Export key” as it is required in the “ClickOnce” extension that will start in the coming step.


Step 16. Now, once you have clicked the “Download Results” option, the eDiscovery PST Export Tool will start automatically. You need to provide the Export key and define the destination path and location to save the Exported PST data to your local computer. Once, you have provided all the details then click on “Start” to export Office 365 mailbox to PST without Outlook. When it gets completed, then close this extension.



Errors You Might Face While Exporting Office 365 to PST via eDiscovery

Below errors can come if eDiscovery is not configured properly:

#Error 1: eDiscovery PST Export Tool Stuck Calculating Error

export office 365 archive to pst

#Error 2: Can not Start an Application Error in the end. (eDiscovery Export Tool download fails)

Cannot start Application

#Error 3: You can’t start the eDiscovery PST Export Tool from the admin center in Office 365 Online

export o365 mailbox to pst

Method 2: Detailed Explanation to Export Office 365 Mailbox to PST Using SysTools Software in a Few Clicks

Users often raise concerns about the above-mentioned manual methods. Considering the growing needs of the user, SysTools Office 365 Export is a complete remedy to perform the export from Office 365 mailboxes to PST / EML / MSG / MBOX / PDF format quickly without facing any technical or non-technical problems.

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Moreover, Office 365 users can export their own mailbox and archive mailboxes without an Admin account. Whereas Admin Impersonation allows downloading of Office 365, normal user mailbox, archive mailbox, and shared mailbox to PST and other file formats. It is designed keeping in mind the various restrictions that are imposed in the manual methods.

This tool does not compromise the integrity of the data as it ensures data integrity. Moreover, a user can run this software on any version of the Windows operating system, including the latest Windows 10.

Working Steps of Software to Export Office 365 Online Mailbox to PST

Step 1. Download, install, and launch the software on your computer.

Free Download Purchase Now

Step 2. Select Office 365 as the source and Outlook as the destination platform.

Step 3. Effortlessly choose your desired workload from the list of mailbox items using our user-friendly interface. Apply date filters for selective data export based on the date range.

Step 4. Log in with your source Office 365 admin credentials to authenticate the platform securely. Click the “Validate” button to ensure the required permissions.

Step 5. Set the destination path to save the resultant PST files on your computer. Choose the appropriate PST file size.

Step 6. Add users using any of the following methods: 

  • Fetch Users – Automatically fetch users from the Source domain.
  • Import Users – Import users through a CSV file.
  • Download Template – Get a sample CSV template to create your user list.

Step 7. Select the users whose data you want to export and click the Start Export button for Office 365 export mailbox to PST.

Note: For the complete step-wise guide to exporting Outlook 365 Online mailbox to PST format using Office 365 admin account, please visit the following URL – https://www.systoolsgroup.com/office-365/export/guide.html

Features Offered By Automated Tool 

  • Export emails in PST, EML, MSG, MBOX, and PDF file formats.
  • Option to Split PST into smaller parts to generate variable size .pst files. 
  • Export archive mailbox to PST from Office 365 user account.
  • Export Office 365 shared mailbox to PST using Admin impersonation.
  • Download Office 365 emails in bulk using the Admin account.
  • Allows you to export the O365 mailbox to PST using a date range.
  • Offers Naming Convention option to archive emails in EML, and MSG formats. 

Method 3: Exchange Online Export Office 365 Mailbox to PST Using PowerShell

First thing, there is no such option available to directly export PST from Office 365 online mailbox via PowerShell. There is no such PowerShell cmdlet command available in Office 365 (like the New-MailboxExportRequest command ).

If the user wants to export Office 365 online mailbox to PST for free, then using eDiscovery PST Export Tool is the only solution. Other methods are also there, which are the technically sound solutions to export Outlook 365 mailboxes.

Those are:

  • Using the PowerShell command user can synchronize Office 365 Outlook Online account with a desktop-based MS Outlook. And then using Import / Export feature one can export Office 365 emails to PST using Outlook.
  • Script delegation full access, Outlook Online bind to the delegated mailbox, and export to PST. Technically very likely possible but I think, no one ever tried to do it. Well, after trying scripts, I found that it is quite complex to Export PST.

Note: There is no such PowerShell script available to directly export PST from Office 365. However, you can use PowerShell to Export Exchange On-Premise to PST.

Export an On-Premise Exchange Mailbox to PST Using PowerShell

Here’s a basic PowerShell script to export an On-Premise Exchange mailbox to a PST file using the New-MailboxExportRequest cmdlet:

Step 1. Connect to Office 365 Exchange Online

Open PowerShell on your computer and run it as an administrator. Use the following command to connect to your Office 365 Exchange Online account:

   $UserCredential = Get-Credential

   Connect-ExchangeOnline -UserPrincipalName <UserPrincipalName> -UserCredential $UserCredential

   Note: Replace <UserPrincipalName> with the actual user’s principal name.

Step 2. Export the Mailbox to PST

Once you are connected, you can use the `New-MailboxExportRequest` cmdlet to export the mailbox to a PST file. Here’s an example command:

   New-MailboxExportRequest -Mailbox <MailboxName> -FilePath \\Server\SharedFolder\mailbox.pst

 Note: Replace <MailboxName> with the actual mailbox name and provide the appropriate file path for the PST file.

Step 3. Monitor Export Progress

You can use the Get-MailboxExportRequest cmdlet to monitor the progress of the export request:


Step 4. Remove the Export Request (Optional)

Once the export is complete, you can use the Remove-MailboxExportRequest cmdlet to remove the export request:

   Get-MailboxExportRequest | Remove-MailboxExportRequest

Note: Make sure to replace <UserPrincipalName> with the actual user’s principal name and `<MailboxName>` with the mailbox you want to export. Also, provide the appropriate file path for the PST file.

Remember that you need to have the necessary permissions and Exchange Online PowerShell modules set up on your system to run this script.

So to make the task easy, the automated solution is recommended over other methods.

Method 4: Export Mailbox from Office 365 Using Outlook

Using Outlook you can export data into PST. However, before you begin you have to ensure a few things. There are a few prerequisites for this method.

  1. In the very first step, you have to configure your Office 365 account with POP configuration in Outlook.
  2. By default, Outlook is set to download email for the past 1 year. You can change this setting if you need to export all your Office 365 emails collectively. Open Outlook, click on Account Settings> Account Name and Sync Settings and move the slider to All.


Step By Step Guide to Export Office 365 Mailbox Using Outlook

Step 1. Open Outlook on your computer. In the top left, click on the File.


Step 2. From the drop-down, select Open & Export > Import/Export option.

Step 3. Click on Export to a file > Next.

Step 4. Choose Outlook Data File (.pst)> Next.

Step 5. Select the name of the email account to export, as shown in the picture below. Only a single account can be exported at a time. Make sure that the Include subfolders check box is selected. This ensures that everything in the account will be exported: Inbox, Calendar, Contacts, and Tasks. Choose Next.


Step 6. Click on the Browse button to specify the destination location to save the Outlook Data File (.pst). Enter the desired file name, and click on the OK button to continue.

Step 7. Click on the Finish button to export Office 365 mailbox to PST using Outlook.

Prima facie of this method seems simple, but there are various shortcomings of this method.  Some of them are as follows:

  • You must have the technical knowledge to configure your Office 365 email account in Outlook with POP configuration.
  • Additionally, you can only export a single account at a time, for multiple-user data export, this method is not practical.
  • It does not export meta-data of mailbox items such as folder properties (views, permissions, and AutoArchive settings), message rules, and blocked senders lists.
  • For instance, if you’re using Cached Exchange Mode, then this method will only export the items in your current cache.

Let’s Sum Up

Users constantly search for how to export Office 365 mailboxes to PST file format. The manual methods discussed in this blog are quite complex and require technical expertise. Moreover, a novice user fails to implement these approaches. Therefore, for an effortless process to export Office 365 online to PST, use the automated tool as discussed above. It is a proficient tool that does not require much technical knowledge. Moreover, one can smoothly download PST from multiple Office 365 user accounts without posing any technical discrepancies.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q 1. Can you Export A PST From Office 365 Archive Mailbox?

Yes, using the below listed quick steps, you can easily and safely perform this operation.

Just follow the 5 quick steps to export Office 365 archive mailbox to PST:  

  • Step 1. Download, Install & Run Tool.
  • Step 2. Choose Office 365 & Outlook.
  • Step 3. Opt Workload & Apply Filter.
  • Step 4. Authenticate Source & Destination.
  • Step 5. Select Users & Start Import Process.

Q 2. Is it possible to export Office 365 archive mailbox to PST?

Yes, using the above software you can easily export Exchange online archive to PST, MSG, and EML file format while maintaining the folder hierarchy.

Q 3. Can I export multiple Office 365 user’s account mailboxes to PST format?

Yes, this software allows you to export multiple O365 user mailboxes to PST.

Q 4. What type of files can I backup from my Office 365 Account?

You can backup Office 365 mailboxes, Contacts, Calendars, and Tasks to Outlook PST, EML, and MSG formats using the above software.

Q 5. Can I use this tool to export Office 365 shared mailbox to PST?

Yes, while using admin impersonation (Is Admin), the tool allows you to select a shared mailbox. You can select the desired shared mailbox to export it into PST format.

Q 6.  How do I export an entire mailbox in Office 365 using Outlook?

Follow the below steps to export PST files using Outlook:

  • Step 1. Configure your Office 365 account in Outlook & click on the File.
  • Step 2. Click on Open & Export and then Import/Export.
  • Step 3. Click on Export to a file and choose Outlook Data File (.pst) then Next.
  • Step 4. Select the required Folders & Subfolders & Click on Next. 
  • Step 5. Provide the destination path and location to save the PST file and click on Finish.

Q 7. How do I grant a role for eDiscovery?

To add the user or assign a role for the eDiscovery process, you must have an Admin or Global Admin account. 

Follow the below steps to assign permission to a user in the Discovery Management role group:

  • Step 1. Go to EAC, & navigate to Permissions > Admin roles.
  • Step 2. Click on Discovery Management and then hit the Edit button.
  • Step 3. Click on the Add button, under the Members option in the In Role Group.
  • Step 4. From the Select Members option, add the required users & hit the Add button, then click on the OK button.
  • Step 5. Now, click on the Save button under the Role Group.

Q 8. What license is required for eDiscovery and Advanced eDiscovery?

It completely depends upon the individual requirements, for instance, if they need eDiscovery for content search, then it is included in all the SKUs. However, if you need an Advanced eDiscovery feature, then you must have an Office 365 E3 subscription. For Advanced Compliance, you will require an E5 subscription plan. Moreover, if you only require content search, then you need Microsoft 365 E1 and above licenses.

Q 9. How do I recover deleted files from eDiscovery?

Follow the below steps for the same –

  • Step 1. Add yourself to the eDiscovery Role Group in Permissions.
  • Step 2. Search & Specify the user’s mailbox for deleted items.
  • Step 3. Now copy the eDiscovery results in a mailbox.
  • Step 4. Export the eDiscovery search result to the PST file.

Q 10. How do I check my eDiscovery results in Office 365?

You can easily track the eDiscovery process & check the results by following the below steps:

  • Step 1. Open EAC >> More Resources >> Microsoft Purview Compliance portal.
  • Step 2.  Navigate to Content Search & then click on Search to display the flyout page.
  • Step 3. Scroll to the bottom and click on a Review sample. 
  • Step 4. Here you can find a sample of the search results.

Q 11. Is it possible to export Office 365 mailbox to PST using PowerShell Command?

No, no such PowerShell commands are used in which users can export Office 365 to PST files. Instead, eDiscovery can be used as discussed above.

Q 12. Why I am facing this error – Office 365 export mailbox to PST error 500?

If you are getting this error, then you must have not set the required permissions for the same. To fix this, you have to update the eDiscovery Manager. Follow the below steps for this:

  • Step 1. Log in to the Admin center >> Navigate to Security & Compliance.
  • Step 2. Go to Permissions >> eDiscovery Manager. 
  • Step 3. Remove yourself from eDiscovery Administrator >>then add to eDiscovery Manager.

By Mohit Jha

Mohit is a Microsoft Certified Expert who wears multiple hats as a writer, researcher, and editor. He's really into cyber security, cloud computing, and digital forensics. These topics get him excited and push him to go beyond just his job. His big goal is to create super well-researched and carefully written articles that help readers learn important technicalities.