How to create an inactive mailbox in Microsoft 365?
Inactive mailboxes are used to retain former employee’s data to preserve sensitive information after they leave the Microsoft 365 organization.
You can create inactive mailboxes to retain mailbox content indefinitely by deleting the user account configured with Microsoft 365 retention policies or holds. Follow the steps below to configure the Microsoft 365 retention policy for an Exchange Online mailbox.
- Login to the Microsoft 365 Purview portal. Navigate to .
- Under the Retention policies tab, click on ‘+New retention policy’ to create a new Microsoft 365 retention policy.
- Give a name for the retention policy and then select the administrative units that you’d like to apply to this policy.
- You can choose either Adaptive or Static as per your requirement. If you choose Adaptive, then you must include the adaptive scopes to dynamically apply the policy. If you choose Static, then you can include only the desired mailboxes.
- You can specify the retention settings like retaining items for a specific period, retaining items forever, and deleting items after a certain period, etc.
- Review your settings and click on Submit. Now, the policy will be applied to the desired mailboxes.
After configuring the data retention policy for a user’s Exchange Online mailbox who is leaving your organization, you can delete the Microsoft 365 user account using PowerShell.
Remove-MgUser –UserId "<UserObjectID>"
How to identify the type of hold placed on an Exchange Online mailbox?
Using AdminDroid, you can check if a mailbox is on hold and remove unnecessary holds or retention policies before deleting a Microsoft 365 user account.
- Here, you can get the entire details of the mailboxes on hold, such as primary SMTP address, mailbox size, inactive days, etc.
- Pro Tip: Make use of the In-Place Holds easy filter to get all mailboxes on specific hold. You can also check Litigation hold status of a user’s Exchange Online mailbox and remove it if you are not willing to retain its contents.