Windows Tips & Tricks UPDATE--June 7, 2004

Windows Tips & Tricks UPDATE, June 7, 2004, —brought to you by the Windows & .NET Magazine Network and the Windows 2000 FAQ site

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  • Q. How can I recover Microsoft Office Outlook messages that have been removed by a hard delete?
  • Q. How can I change the number of days that Exchange Server 2003 retains deleted mail items?
  • Q. Does acctinfo.dll work with Windows 2000 Server?
  • Q. I have multiple Microsoft Exchange Server 5.5 sites. How will these map to Exchange Server 2003 administrative groups when I upgrade to Exchange 2003?
  • Q. How can I install Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 Service Pack 1 (SP1)?

by John Savill, FAQ Editor, [email protected]

This week, I tell you how to recover Microsoft Office Outlook messages that have been removed by a hard delete, how to change the number of days that Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 retains deleted mail items, and whether acctinfo.dll works with Windows 2000 Server. I also explain how Exchange Server 5.5 sites map to Exchange 2003 administrative groups when you upgrade to Exchange 2003 and tell you how to install Exchange 2003 Service Pack 1 (SP1).

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Q. How can I recover Microsoft Office Outlook messages that have been removed by a hard delete?

A. Usually when you delete a message, Exchange moves it to the Deleted Items folder, which you can empty by right-clicking Deleted Items and selecting Empty "Deleted Items" Folder from the displayed context menu. Alternatively, you can configure Outlook to empty the Deleted Items folder each time Outlook is closed. To do so, select Tools, Options, and click the Other tab. In the General section, select the "Empty the Deleted Items folder upon exiting" check box.

After Exchange removes items from the Deleted Items folder, the Exchange server by default keeps the messages for an additional 7 days. During this time, you can recover deleted messages from the Deleted Items folder by selecting Tools, Recover Deleted Items.

You can perform a hard delete of a message by highlighting the message and pressing Shift+Del. Performing a hard delete removes the message without moving it to the Deleted Items folder. When you attempt to recover hard-deleted items, you'll see that the hard-deleted messages aren't listed in the recovery dialog box. If you select the folder from which you performed the hard delete (e.g., Inbox), you'll see that the option to recover deleted items is grayed out on the Tools menu.

You can recover items that have been deleted from an Outlook folder--including hard-deleted items--either by performing the following steps or by adding the dumpster.reg entry to the registry. (You can download the dumpster.reg entry at

  1. Start the registry editor (regedit.exe).
  2. Navigate to the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Exchange\Client\Options subkey.
  3. From the Edit menu, select New and click DWORD value.
  4. Enter the name DumpsterAlwaysOn and press Enter.
  5. Double-click the new value and set it to 1. Click OK.
  6. Close the registry editor.

When you restart Outlook, the option to recover messages should be available for all folders.

Q. How can I change the number of days that Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 retains deleted mail items?

A. By default, Exchange 2003 keeps deleted items for 7 days after they're deleted. You can change the number of days that Exchange retains deleted items by performing the following steps. (You must perform this procedure for each mail database whose keep-deleted-items value you want to change.)

  1. Start Exchange System Manager (ESM) by clicking Start, Programs, Microsoft Exchange, System Manager.
  2. Access the database you want to modify by navigating to Administrative Groups, , Servers, , , .
  3. Right-click the email database and select Properties from the context menu.
  4. Click the Limits tab. You'll see the Properties window that the figure at shows.
  5. Under "Deletion settings," change the "Keep deleted items for (days):" value to the value you want and click OK.

Q. Does acctinfo.dll work with Windows 2000 Server?

A. In the FAQ "What's acctinfo.dll?" (, we examined the functionality of this useful DLL. Many readers responded by asking whether acctinfo.dll works with Win2K. After testing the DLL, I'm pleased to report that it functions just fine under all versions of Win2K Server.

Q. I have multiple Microsoft Exchange Server 5.5 sites. How will these map to Exchange Server 2003 administrative groups when I upgrade to Exchange 2003?

A. When you install your first Exchange 2003 server in an Exchange 5.5 organization, the installation wizard asks you which Exchange 5.5 server you want to connect to. After you've specified an Exchange 5.5 server to connect to, the Exchange 2003 server is added to the administrative group that matches the site name that the Exchange 5.5 server to which you're currently connected belongs to. Exchange 2003 creates an administrative group during your organization's first Exchange 2003 server installation for each existing Exchange 5.5 site.

When you install the next Exchange 2003 server, the wizard displays a selection of existing administrative groups from which you can choose a group for the new server. For example, if you have three Exchange 5.5 sites, siteA, siteB, and siteC, after you install the first Exchange 2003 server, Exchange 2003 creates three administrative groups--siteA, siteB, and siteC.

Q. How can I install Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 Service Pack 1 (SP1)?

A. Before your install Exchange 2003 SP1, read the release notes. They contain a number of notices that could apply to your site and might affect the order in which you upgrade servers. You also need to apply hotfix 831464 before you install the service pack. After you have the SP1 installation files, perform the following steps:

  1. Start Windows Explorer.
  2. Navigate to the \setup\i386 folder on the SP1 media (e.g, CD-ROM, folder).
  3. Run update.exe.
  4. Click Next on the SP1 installation dialog box's welcome screen.
  5. Select "I agree" and click Next.
  6. You'll see that the "Update" action is chosen for all installed components, which the figure at shows. Click Next.
  7. Click Next to begin the installation.
  8. After the installation is complete, click Finish. You're prompted to restart the server.

During the installation, the Information Store service, WWW service, and other Exchange processes are stopped, which interrupts service to users. Therefore, you should plan to perform the upgrade at a time when users don't need to access Exchange.

A new version of the Exchange Server Deployment Tools is available from You can use the deployment tools to assist you in the upgrade process. The tools offer new features, including enhanced support for consolidating sites in a mixed-mode environment (i.e., an environment containing a mix of servers running any combination of Exchange 2003, Exchange 2000 Server, and Exchange Server 5.5).

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