Exchange 2010 - retention policies


On our old Exchange Server 2003, we had recipient policies that cleared the "deleted items" every 30 days.

We are now running Exchange 2010.

The mailbox database "deletion settings" is set to retain deleted items for 14 days (default setting)
i.e. deleted items will be removed after 14 days

I have now setup a retention policy and retention tag and I have configured the policy to delete items in the "deleted items" folders every 30 days.

Are the "The mailbox database deletion settings" and the "retention policy" treated separately or are they combined in some way?

i.e. will deleted items take 14 days PLUS 30 days to actually disappear or is it just 14 days (or just 30 days).

Sorry to ask such a basic question but cannot find anything on this conflict query.


  • ClaymooreClaymoore Member Posts: 1,637
    They are separate. The Mailbox Database settings refer to the Recoverable Items folder, aka The Dumpster. When you empty the Deleted Items folder in Outlook or Shift+Delete an item, it is moved to the hidden Recoverable Items folder for that mailbox. When a user goes to Outlook and chooses to Recover Deleted Items, Outlook displays the contents of the Recoverable Items folder.

    The Recoverable Items folder has its own retention settings and storage quota. Usually the retention is managed at the database level, with 14 days being the default, but it can be set at the individual mailbox level. Same with the storage quota, with the default being 30 GB I believe. If you do a get-mailbox -id yourID | fl you will be able to see the settings. Placing a mailbox on legal hold sets the quota and retention on the individual Recoverable Items folder to unlimited in Office 365, but you will have to manage the quota on a local database.

    Understanding Recoverable Items: Exchange 2010 Help

    Something new with Exchange 2013 is the implementation of a rolling legal hold, called an In-Place Hold. Instead of archiving and journaling for compliance, you can apply a rolling legal hold for a mailbox that keeps everything in the Recoverable Items folder for the retention period and then deletes it.

    In-Place Hold: Exchange Online Help
  • neathneathneathneathneathneath Member Posts: 438
    Many thanks for the reply.

    I thought that they were separate but that has cleared this up now :)

    Items in deleted items are now showing "due to expire in 21 days" etc.
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