Resolve failed Mailbox Move Requests

So chances are, after reading my previous post on how to move Mailboxes via Organizational Unit you have migrated a couple hundred mailboxes. There is a good possibility that a small number of them have the status of Failed and that if you dig in to the log of the transfer you will come across the following error:

Error: This mailbox exceeded the maximum number of corrupted items that were specified for this move request.

Whenever the Exchange 2010 Mailbox Replication Service comes across a Mailbox with a corrupted piece of data (whether than be an attachment, calendar item etc…) it automatically skips the mailbox and continues to plow through the rest in your list. This is by design and follows the mantra of “better safe than sorry”. Fear not, if you are happy to accept data loss (more of this later) we can get around this. Head to your Exchange Powershell and enter the following:

Get-MoveRequest | where {$_.Status -eq "Failed"} | Set-MoveRequest -BadItemLimit 100 -AcceptLargeDataLoss

The above will get all the mailbox move requests that have failed and set the maximum amount of corrupted items to 100 before it skips the entire mailbox (as what was previously occurring). Note the AcceptLargeDataLoss switch is needed if you set your BadItemLimit switch to anything about 50. Now that we have told Exchange that we don’t mind a bit of data loss lets resume the move requests:

Get-MoveRequest | where {$_.Status -eq "Failed"} | Resume-MoveRequest

Depending on the amount of corrupt items in each mailbox, with any luck they will be now on their way to your new Exchange server. If you get a couple that still don’t move across and failed, just up the BadItemLimit and try again. So I mentioned earlier that I would touch on the data loss aspect of the mailbox move and why it’s not such a terrible thing to occur. From time to time, with the amount of calendar appointments, shared tasks and what not flying across several mailboxes at a time there comes a time that corruption can occur. This corruption can lead to unsavoury experiences for the end user, and this is not a good thing (you’ll have to hear about it the next time you venture close to the water cooler). During this mailbox move, (when instructed) corrupted items are dropped from the mailbox and the end result is a pristine and clean mailbox, free from evil corruption. Microsoft even make use of this function to cleanse mailboxes that are apart of their Exchange Online cloud offering as detailed here: Corrupted Items and Mailbox Moves in Exchange 2010. If you have multiple Exchange 2010/13 Mailbox servers it might be wise to shuffle the mailboxes between them every now and again to perform a cleansing ritual…that or overkill.

James Written by:


  1. Azza

    LIFE SAVER!!! Thank you worked a treat

    • 27/04/2013

      Pleasure Azza. Good to hear. Check out my other Exchange posts for more 😉

  2. 21/04/2014

    Thanks @James for sharing the informative blog for Exchange users. But what if someone wants to backup some crucial data from Exchange EDB file and that particular EDB is corrupted. According to me in that scenario use of any third party professional recovery tool is better option.

    Please share your point of view.

    • 21/04/2014

      Hi Yogita,

      If the data is mission critical then absolutely use a tool (3rd party or otherwise) to recover it before making the transfer across from old server to new server.

      However, you should always be prepared that when dealing with corruption you maybe not get back your data and a rigerous backup system to restore from is preferred.

      • 21/04/2014

        Hi James,

        Good to see your point of view. I do agree one should always be prepared
        for such situations. As such data corruption scenes are anonymous.

        By the way on the behalf of Stellar Data Recovery, I would like to
        request you to please review our Exchange related tools. We have
        Exchange mailbox recovery tool that can recover data from corrupted EDB
        file. Also we have EDB to PST converter tool to export exchange
        mailboxes even in online mode.

        Please let us know if you have some time to review our tools.

  3. 23/04/2014

    Agree with @yogita, @james !

    Really there are situations when inbuilt-tools do not work to repair a damaged Exchange database files. In such cases, only a third party Exchange server recovery program may help to Exchange server users. Recently, we faced a critical issue in our Exchange database files due to hardware failure, then this tool helped us in recovery of our unreachable mailboxes:


  4. rosihilton

    If you are unable to fix damaged EDB files of Exchange Server with built-tools do not work to repair a damaged Exchange database files, then third party software is required for a best result. you can check out such a software from here

  5. Hays

    Works a treat! Just thought I’d point out if the first command is copied and pasted it throws an error due to a space between the dash and “BadItemLimit” command.

    • 14/05/2015

      Great catch Hays, thank you. I have now have corrected it!

  6. Vasboz

    Thanks James for your post. Came in handy when needed most. I’d buy you a beer if you’re in Sydney! 🙂

    • 11/07/2016

      Love hearing this. Glad it’s still useful. Cheers Vasboz!

Helpful? Have a question on the above?