Thursday, August 05, 2010

Importing a Outlook Express dbx file into Exchange using the EWS managed API and powershell

I recently switched to a new Laptop which had Windows7 which left me in a little bit of a hole as to how i could get access to some old email which i needed rather urgently that was located in a dbx file from a previous laptop where I had been using Outlook Express for a number of years. I found which had a acceptable method of doing this but I thought I'd like to push this email into a Exchange Mailbox anyway so i decided to see if i could do this programmaticly.

Turns out there is no real API that makes access t0 DBX files easy however a few people over the years have come up with methods to access these files, there is a PHP dbxparser which someone has also ported to C# on code-project here this was enough information to allow me to build a simple DLL that i could then use in Powershell to extract email and then using some simple code to upload the email into Exchange using the MIMEContent upload technique with EWS. In the end the code worked fairly well i had to include some code to ignore NDR's which where causing some errors and because its not batched its a little slow but it did do the trick. I've put a download of the code I used and the DLL here for anybody that interested the script itself looks like this.

$dbxfile = "c:\temp\inbox.dbx"
$dllpath = "C:\temp\psdbxparser.dll"
$MailboxName = ""

$casserverName = "exserver"
$userName = "username"
$password = "password"
$domain = "domain"

## Code From
## Create a compilation environment
$Provider=New-Object Microsoft.CSharp.CSharpCodeProvider
$Params=New-Object System.CodeDom.Compiler.CompilerParameters
$Params.ReferencedAssemblies.Add("System.DLL") | Out-Null

namespace Local.ToolkitExtensions.Net.CertificatePolicy{
public class TrustAll : System.Net.ICertificatePolicy {
public TrustAll() {
public bool CheckValidationResult(System.Net.ServicePoint sp,
System.Security.Cryptography.X509Certificates.X509Certificate cert,
System.Net.WebRequest req, int problem) {
return true;

## We now create an instance of the TrustAll and attach it to the ServicePointManager

## end code from

$dllpath = "C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange\Web Services\1.0\Microsoft.Exchange.WebServices.dll"
$service = New-Object Microsoft.Exchange.WebServices.Data.ExchangeService([Microsoft.Exchange.WebServices.Data.ExchangeVersion]::Exchange2007_SP1)
$uri=[system.URI] ("https://" + $casserverName + "/ews/exchange.asmx")
$service.Url = $uri
$service.Credentials = New-Object System.Net.NetworkCredential($username,$password,$domain)

$casuri = "https://" + $casserverName + "/ews/exchange.asmx"
$uri=[system.URI] $casuri
$service.Url = $uri

$folderid = new-object Microsoft.Exchange.WebServices.Data.FolderId([Microsoft.Exchange.WebServices.Data.WellKnownFolderName]::Inbox,$MailboxName)
$TargetFolder = [Microsoft.Exchange.WebServices.Data.Folder]::Bind($service,$folderid)

$dbx = new-object psdbxparser.DBX
$mcount = $dbx.Parse($dbxfile)
if ($mcount -gt 0){
for($iloop=0;$iloop -lt $mcount;$iloop++){
$msgString = $dbx.Extract($iloop)
$emUploadEmail = new-object Microsoft.Exchange.WebServices.Data.EmailMessage($service)
[byte[]]$bdBinaryData1 = [System.Text.Encoding]::ASCII.GetBytes($msgString)
$emUploadEmail.MimeContent = new-object Microsoft.Exchange.WebServices.Data.MimeContent("us-ascii", $bdBinaryData1);
$PR_Flags = new-object Microsoft.Exchange.WebServices.Data.ExtendedPropertyDefinition(3591, [Microsoft.Exchange.WebServices.Data.MapiPropertyType]::Integer);
if ($msgString.Indexof("message/delivery-status") -eq -1){
"Uploaded : " + $iloop




Anonymous said...

Hi Glen,

is there also a way for importing data (mail, calendar, contacts) from a pst-file via EWS while retaining the original folder structure?

best regards

Glen said...

If you did a search of the mailbox first using FindFolder and then found the folder path that matched your PST path (and i guess if it you didn't find a match you would create the folder) then you use the folderid of the found or new folder then it should be achievable.