WILSON3838 avatar image
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WILSON3838 asked

Exchange retention policies in English

Can someone verify I'm understanding retention tags and policies correctly? Full 365 deployment across the board - I have the following retention tags (among others):
1) Type: Default, Retention Period: 180 days, Retention Action: Archive and 2) Type: Archive, Retention period: 150 days: Retention Action: Delete.

Question - if these two tags are applied to a policy and the policy is applied to a mailbox, does it do the following: Messages in any default folder (Inbox, Sent, Deleted Items) will be moved to the users Archive folder after 180 days if unmodified. And, if unmodified while in the Archive folder, they will be deleted after 150 days?

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michev answered michev commented

You need to clarify the type of the second tag, Archive is an action, not a tag type. You cannot have a separate tag stamped directly on a folder within the Archive mailbox is that's what you mean, as detailed here:

Also, are you using Exchange Online or Exchange server, as there are minor differences in functionality?

In the example above, assuming #2 is a Folder-level or personal tag applied to a given folder, it will Delete all messages within the given folder, before tag #1 is in effect. Tag #1 will only affect items within other folders/unstamped items.

Lastly, the retention age is calculated based on the date item was created/received, not modified, with few exceptions:

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Thanks for the quick reply Michev!
I'm using Exchange Server. I agree "Archive" (& a name of a folder) is an action and not a type. I was going by what's listed in the "Type" column when viewing the list of retention tags. The Type column seems to display types (default or personal) and folders (Sent Items, Deleted Items, & Archive).
My main concern is the timing. Based on your feedback, it sounds like the policies conflict and won't do what I want them to do. To clarify, your saying the 2nd tag (150 days) will delete items 150 days after they were created/received and NOT 150 days after they were moved to the Archive folder (which is what I want). Correct?

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Yes, it's almost always based on "creation" date, the article I linked to above gives you the details. Actually, here's the one for on-prem Exchange:

If the idea is to keep items in their original location for 150 days, then move them to archive use a Default tag with Archive action and age set to 150 days. If you additionally want to delete those items after XXX days, create another tag, this time with the Delete action, and make sure its age is greater than the 150 days stamped on the Archive tag. In that way, items will be moved to Archive after 150 days and removed after XXX (non-cumulative) days.

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Here's a quote from the documentation:

When planning to create retention policies, you must consider whether they'll include both archive and deletion tags. As mentioned earlier, a retention policy can have one DPT that uses the Move to Archive action and one DPT that uses either the Delete and Allow Recovery or Permanently Delete action. The DPT with the Move to Archive action must have a lower retention age than the DPT with a deletion action. For example, you can use a DPT with the Move to Archive action to move items to the archive mailbox in two years, and a DPT with a deletion action to remove items from the mailbox in seven years. Items in both primary and archive mailboxes will be deleted after seven years.

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