Moving Outlook Folders

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Wow – I had a client with, hmm, maybe 300 folders all on the root of a PST file. When I moved them to Office365 they had an Archive option with UNLIMITED space! Woohoo! So now to move those 300 folders to the Archive…. Boooo!

At first I was moving one folder at a time because as you may know, you can’t group move or copy folders that aren’t already within a folder themselves. This process was going to take about a week I would guess.
So it struck me that if I move each folder on the PST to another root folder on the SAME PST the move should be instant as it’s not copying data, it’s just changing the pointer of where the data should be inside the PST. So then all I need to do once they are all under one folder is move that root folder to the online archive.

But wait Mr Tipster dude, you have already started copying the folders on the new online archive right?

Oh yes dear reader I did, but the same proces works for the online archive. I just call the folders different names and then when the new PST root folder copied to the online archive, I just did the reverse and moved the folders to where I needed instantly – remember because now that the data is there it’s just a pointer change.

Confused? I know I can sound garbled… so here’s a break down;

BEFORE

LOCAL PST

  • folder4
  • folder5
  • folder6
  • etc

ONLINE ARCHIVE

  • brand new archive folder
    • folder1
    • folder2
    • folder3
    • etc

MID-PROCESS

LOCAL PST

  • new root folder
    • folder4
    • folder5
    • folder6
    • etc

ONLINE ARCHIVE

  • brand new archive folder
    • folder1
    • folder2
    • folder3
    • etc

AFTER

LOCAL PST

ONLINE ARCHIVE

  • brand new archive folder

    • folder1
    • folder2
    • folder3
    • etc
  • new root folder
    • folder4
    • folder5
    • folder6
    • etc

So then all I needed to do was to drag the folders within the ONLINE ARCHIVE folder “new root folder” to the other root folder “brand new archive folder” and hey presto!

Still confused? Go have a drink 🙂

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