Office 365 email archiving

Here are two ways to have Office 365 emails archived on a system external to Office 365. One is Journaling the second is using a BCC rule. I’ll quickly cover both here.



1. Login into as an Office 365 Administrator


Select the Manage hyperlink from under the Exchange Online section in the middle of the page.

2. Select Mail Control then Journaling from the Exchange settings


3. Click New to create a new journaling rule.


4. Pull down the first option list and select [Apply to messages]. Pull down the second option list and select All messages. Set an email address where the journaled messages will be sent. This email address should not be an Office 365 email mailbox. Finally, give the rule a name and click the Save button.


5. Click Yes to apply rule to all future messages.



6. Note the warning about NDRs. Click Close to complete.



7. Now any messages sent or received will be forwarded to the email box you specified during the configuration.


BCC Rule

1. Login into as an Office 365 Administrator.


2. You will need to create a dedicated journaling mailbox. Do this in the normal way you create a mailbox in Office 365. You may need to assign an Exchange license to this mailbox. I would also assume that you could also create and use a shared mailbox for this purpose via PowerShell but have not tested that. The advantage of using a shared mailbox is that it would not consume an Office 365 license.

3. From the Home screen of the Office 365 administration login select the Manage hyperlink from under the Exchange Online section in the middle of the page.


4. Select Mail Control then Rules from the Exchange settings.


5. Select New to create a new rule.


6. In the first pull down list select [Apply to all messages].


7. In the second pull down list select Bcc this message to. A list of current mailboxes will appear. Select the journaling mailbox you created during the first step. Ensure that the mailbox appears in the lower part of the screen next to Add –>. Then click OK to save.



8. You will be returned to the New Rule window. Click OK to save. Then click Yes to apply this rule to all future messages.



9. You will then be returned to the Rules window where you should see the new rule that was just created and a summary of its actions on the right.


10. Now all messages to any email address will be sent to the journaling mailbox you have created. The next step is to configure a remote archiving product to copy and then delete these emails from the journaling mailbox.

There are many third party tools that can be configured to do this, in this example we will use Astaro email archiving. Information about this can be found at:

After you have configured an account (a 30 day trial is available with Astaro) log onto the administration console and configure message retrieval.


In this case the archive has been configured to pull mail from the journaling mailbox configured on Office 365 via IMAP.  Information on determining the IMAP server settings can be found at

Once you have entered all the information select the option to Test Settings. Once that is correct click Apply.

You will notice here that configuring the Astaro Mailbox message source that messages there will be deleted after they have been successfully imported. That will ensure the Office 365 journaling mailbox will not grow in size. That maybe why a shared mailbox could work, even given its limits.

11. In the Astaro configuration you may also need to alter the Auditor mode to allow the viewing of all emails if required. You can configure additional users to access this archive but in this case all that is required is a single admin account that can view all the archived emails.


12. You should now be able to search the archive as email flows. With the Astaro product the option to Perform auditor search may need to be checked as shown below to see all the emails. This option was only available if the auditor settings were enabled as shown in the previous step.


Hopefully that has helped you understand two different configurations for externally archiving emails from Office 365.

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