I have a request from our legal team to search a user's mailbox. The mailbox is 15 GB in size and it is on Exchange 2003. I am trying to use Windows Search and Google Desktop. I have gotten them to index the mailbox but getting the results into a folder to backup on CD is a bit difficult, as neither allows you to copy results to another folder.

Can anyone point me to right direction? What is the best way to index and copy the results of a .pst, mailbox or .edb file?

  • What version of Windows, what version of Outlook? I'm guessing Outlook 2003 and Windows XP? Sep 9, 2009 at 15:57
  • outlook 2007 or outlook 2003 on windows xp.
    – nysingh
    Sep 9, 2009 at 16:02
  • What exactly are you looking for and how far back? I.e. are you looking for emails from a certain address going back a week, or a certain subject back a year?
    – Kez
    Sep 9, 2009 at 16:34
  • looking for emails with certain keywords between date range.
    – nysingh
    Sep 9, 2009 at 17:02

4 Answers 4


I'm not sure what the best method from a server standpoint would be. For my mailbox searching and indexing, I use Xobni, however given the size of the mailbox it may not be the optimal solution.


Depending on the legal software they use I would give them PSTs that way they can create load files or review them natively. I am not to up to date on programs like Concordance and Summation but I don't think they can view EDB files plus a smaller culled PST would be a lot easier to work with. There are a few forensic programs that are relatively inexpensive but if you continue doing this you may want to look at a full blown eDiscovery suite and save yourself time and frustration.


In Copernic Desktop Search's feature list, it says:

Act on result

  • New! Drag and drop results
  • Save searches
  • New! Export result list

I've only had experience with much older (and free) versions of Copernic Desktop Search, so I can't confirm whether "Drag and drop results" or "Export result list" would solve your problem, but it may be worth investigating.


I just completed a similar search through my Exchange using Sherpa Software's Discovery Attender. They have a trial version available that will search PST or mail store, advanced terms, and export to individual emails or PST with index. Worked through 10GB mailboxes in several hours, with more than 15 search terms. Of course your mileage may vary.

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