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PST Preparation

3 Sep 2014 by Andrew Barnes

PST File Preparation

Before PST files can be ingested into the target platform they must be prepared to ensure the ingestion will be successful.

It makes no difference whether the platform is Symantec Enterprise Vault, Microsoft Exchange, Office 365 or a cloud archiving system, unless files are prepared there will be a large number of failures.

PST FlightDeck performs “Pre-flight checks” against PST files in order to identify PST files that can not be migrated without user or administrator intervention.

This includes:

  • Password protected PSTs
  • Corrupt PSTs
  • Empty PSTs
  • “Orphaned PSTs” that cannot be matched against a mailbox or user

By knowing the files which can be safely migrated and which ones need additional treatment, the migration queue can be optimized and the number of errors reduced during the migration.

A typical approach can be found below:



During this workflow the following actions take place:

  • Passwords are normally removed before the backup to ensure PST FlightDeck can operate on the files.
  • Backups are taken of PST files before they are actually processed – this makes it possible to go back and reprocess or deliver the original file back to the end user in support cases.
  • The ANSI-to-Unicode Conversion Module is there to ensure that all files are converted to Unicode format for a smooth ingestion. Typically ANSI PST files cause ingestion problems, especially for Enterprise Vault.
  • Remove any unwanted content via the Filter Module to ensure that old recurring calendar items do not pop up again – or even a filter that only allows data younger than X years to be migrated.
  • Item de-duplication

Once all stages of preparation have been passed will files be ready for ingestion.