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Tip of the Day
Language: Microsoft Exchange
Expertise: Beginner
Feb 3, 2000

Changing E-mail Addresses in Bulk

Question:
How can I define a second SMTP e-mail address, specify that the new e-mail address be the reply address, and retain the old address easily for many (>1000) users?

Answer:
Probably the easiest way to do this is to do a Directory Export in Exchange Administrator to create a .CSV file, and then open that .CSV file in Excel.

  1. If you don't already have one you'll need to add a column called "Secondary-Proxy-Addresses" (no quotes).
  2. Select the column with your primary SMTP addresses and drag to move those to the new column you just created.
  3. Now you'll need to create the new primary addresses. Without any details of your mailboxes or what the new addresses are, I can't really get very specific on how to create them in Excel—but Excel has a variety of tools, from the Fill Handle to nifty functions and macros that can automate (to varying degrees) the process of filling in data.
  4. Once you've got all your new primary addresses created, save that file as a .CSV file (Comma-Separated Values) and then do a Directory Import of that file back into Exchange.
I shouldn't have to tell you that it's a good idea to have a full backup of your Exchange server before you do things like this...but I guess I just did.

CAUTION: One thing to watch out for—be sure to use a recent version of Excel (like Excel 2000) because older versions have a limit of 255 characters in a cell, so lengthy distribution lists would get truncated.

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