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How do I discover PST files and upload them to Azure via a Group Policy Object?

Last Update: 7/21/2017 11:34 AM
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How do I discover PST files and upload them to Azure via a Group Policy Object?

Answer:

To discover PST files on the network and then upload them to Azure, complete each of the steps detailed below, in order:

 

Step 1: Create a network share that is accessible to all of your customer’s computers, and put the UploaderWiz-extracted files in the share folder.

Note: For more information about Windows Server file and storage services, read the File and Storage Services Overview TechNet article.

  1. Log on to the file server as an administrator.
  2. Click Start and search for Server Manager.
  3. Click Server Manager from the search results.
  4. Click File and Storage Services.
  5. Click Shares.
  6. Next to Shares, click Tasks.
  7. Click New Share.

  8. Continue through the New Share Wizard prompts until finished, then click Create.
  9. Write down the share's network path; you will need this when creating the scheduled task.

Step 2: Download and extract the UploaderWiz files into the share.

  1. Log on to the file server as an administrator.
  2. Download the BitTitan UploaderWiz tool from here. Select the shared directory as the download directory, and click the Save button > Once downloaded, select the file: UploaderWiz.exe > select Extract > Extract All > Browse to the shared directory to extract these files into. Click Extract.

 

Step 3: Create the batch file, which will be called by the Group Policy Object (GPO).

Prerequisites:

  • Azure access key and Azure secret key. Steps to obtain these: Log in to https://manage.windowsazure.com > Click Storage > click Manage Access Keys at the bottom of the screen. Note: The Azure access key refers to the storage account name. The Azure secret key can be either the primary or secondary access key.
  • Create a private blob container. Take note of the name of the blob container.

 

While logged into the file server as an administrator, create a batch file in the share, e.g., discover.bat.

Use a text editor (e.g., notepad), and enter the following command parameters in the file:

\\servername\sharename\UploaderWiz.exe -accesskey xxxxxxxx -secretkey xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx -container xxxxxxxx -type azureblobs -autodiscover true -interactive false -filefilter "*.pst"

 

Notes:

  • Replace \\servername\sharename with the share's network path. Example: \\PTS-FILESRV\discover\UploaderWiz\UploaderWiz.exe , where the file server name = PTS-FILESRV, the share name = discover, and the files were extracted into a directory named UploaderWiz.
  • If PST files for all users are in a certain directory, then you can add a flag to define the rootpath. For example, if PST files are always in a directory named c:\pst, then you can add the following flag to your command line parameters: -rootpath c:\pst

 

Step 4: Create a Group Policy Object that forces the domain-joined computers in a security filter to execute the batch file through a scheduled task.

  1. Log on to the Active Directory Domain Controller as an administrator.
  2. Click Start, and search for Group Policy Management.
  3. Click Group Policy Management.
  4. Right-click the desired Active Directory domain, and then click Create a GPO in this domain, and Link it here.

  5. Enter a name for the GPO, and then click OK.

    Note: By default, the GPO will apply to all users and computers that successfully authenticate to the Active Directory domain.
  6. To narrow the scope of computers that run the batch file, select Authenticated Users, and click Remove.

  7. To confirm the removal, click OK.
  8. To add a new security filter, click Add.
  9. Type the name of the security group that the target computers are a member of, and click Check names.

    Note: We preconfigured the "US Employees" security group for demonstration purposes. For more information about Active Directory security groups, read the Active Directory Security Groups TechNet article.

  10. Click OK.
  11. Right-click the new GPO, and then click Edit.
  12. In the console tree, under Computer Configuration, click Preferences > ControlPanel Settings > Scheduled Tasks.
  13. Right-click under Scheduled Tasks and click New, and then click Immediate Task (At least Windows 7).

    Note: For more information about Scheduled Task Items, read the Configure a Scheduled Task Item TechNet article.

  14. Enter a name and a description for the Scheduled Task.
  15. Click Change User or Group.
  16. Type system into the Object name text box.
  17. Click Check Names.

    Note: Make sure that the system object name resolves to NT Authority\System.
  18. Under Security options, click Run whether a user is logged on or not and add a checkmark next to Run with highest privileges.
  19. In the Configure for drop-down menu, select Windows 7®, Windows Server™ 2008 R2.

  20. Click the Actions tab
  21. Click New.
  22. In the Action drop-down menu, select Start a program.
  23. In the Programs/script text box, enter the network path for the batch file. Note: If you use the Browse button to find the location of the script, it will add the path as c:\xxxx. This is incorrect, since the script needs to include the UNC path and not the local path. Be sure to replace the c:\ format with the \\servername\sharename\ format.
  24. Click OK.
  25. Click the Conditions tab.
  26. Add a checkmark next to Start only if the following network connection is available, and then select Any connection.

  27. Click OK.
  28. Close the Group Policy Management Editor, and then close Group Policy Management.

The discover.bat file will execute on user computers at the next Group Policy refresh, typically every 90 minutes, with a random offset of 0 to 30 minutes.

Step 5: Check Azure blob container for PST files.

After waiting the allotted GPO refresh time, check your Azure blob container for the PST files.

If PST files are not discovered and uploaded to the container, refer to KB005473, for troubleshooting advice. Note: UploaderWiz log files are stored in %LOCALAPPDATA%\BitTitan folder.

If PST files have been discovered and uploaded to Azure, then you are ready to continue with your PST migration project. You can create a MigrationWiz Personal Archive project, and autodiscover the PST files in Azure and import them into your project, by following the steps in the PST migration guide. KB004993