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How to open EDB files without Exchange Server

The Exchange database file (.EDB) stores the mailboxes and public folders of Exchange users on a server computer. This EDB file contains several mailbox data items from Exchange accounts such as emails, journals, notes, tasks, attachments, messages, calendars, contacts, etc.

Why might you need to open EDB files without the Exchange server?

There could be several possible reasons that you need to open the EDB file without the Exchange Server. An Exchange administrator can view the EDB files and mailboxes through the Exchange Admin Center (EAC). However, if the Exchange server goes down or the EDB shuts down due to errors like hardware failure, improper shutdown, malware intrusion, etc., the EDB file goes offline and becomes inaccessible. The same thing happens when the Exchange server is taken out of service.

An offline EDB file can no longer be accessed via the EAC. You may need to connect the offline EDB to the exchange server, which sounds simple, but is a tedious task and most of the time it doesn't work - especially if the EDB is badly damaged.

Here is one method you can try to restore an off-hook Exchange Database (EDB) using the dial tone recovery technique.

An offline EDB file cannot be accessed via the EAC. You may need to mount the offline EDB to the exchange server, which sounds easy, but is a tedious task and most of the time it won't work - especially if the EDB is badly damaged. So if you access an EDB file without an ExchangeServer

So if you want to access and open an EDB file without an Exchange Server, this guide is for you. This guide explains how you can open an EDB file if you do not have access to the Exchange server. Also solutions for displaying and exporting the mailboxes from the EDB to the PST file format when the EDB is offline, has been detached or is not accessible via the Exchange server.

Solutions to open EDB files without ExchangeServer

Before we turn to the solution aspect, let's take a quick look at Obtain two standard mailboxes that will be created on the Exchange server.

  • Public folder (pub.EDB) Save a Rich Text Format (RTF) file
  • Private folder (priv.EDB) Save all standard messages and attachments

There are two different solutions that you can use to open EDB files without an exchange server. The first uses the Microsoft’s ExchangeServer mailbox merge wizard (ExMerge.exe). The second method uses StellarsEDB to PST converter software that can help you open and access EDB mailboxes without an exchange server when ExMerge.exe fails or does not work. These solutions are explained below.

Solution 1: use MicrosoftExMerge.exe utility

ExMerge.exe is a Microsoft Exchange Server Mailbox Merge Wizard that an Exchange administrator can use to extract data from mailboxes on one Exchange server and merge that data into mailboxes on another Exchange server. You can use the tool to convert EDB files to personal folders (.PST) and then import them into Outlook.NOTE: This works for Exchangeserver2000, 2003 and 5.5. The utility is no longer available on Microsoft's official website. However, you can download it from other reliable sources such as CNET.

Follow the steps below:

  1. Go to the Google search bar -> find ExMerge.exe and download the utility
  2. Click on the ExMerge.exe setup and select the extraction location

3. Click on ‘OK’ to extract it

4. Mark the check box Extract data from an Exchange server mailbox -> Next
5. Click on the Import procedure tab -> select Archive data for target storage -> OK
6. Select the option Message details -> Enter details -> OK
7. Select Mailbox for Export -> Next-> Specify Location -> Export Process Complete -> Finish

The resulting PST file is now ready for import. Import them into your configured Outlook account and see you all EDB data.

Limitations of the ExMerge.exe utility

  • Does not extract mailboxes larger than 2 GB in size
  • Damaged mailbox items cannot be exported
  • ExMerge.exe does not work for ExchangeServer 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016 and 2019.

Also, there is no alternative to the ExMerge.exe utility in MicrosoftExchange to open and view EDB without Exchange.

Solution 2: using an EDB to PST converter

You can use Stellar Converter for EDB software to open offline EDB files directly without Exchange. All you have to do is download the EDB to PST Converter and launch the software on your Windows PC.

Then select the EDB file and click “Next” to access and open the EDB mailboxes and mailpieces

The software can be downloaded for free and allows you to scan, open and preview the EDB mailboxes. You can then save the EDB mailboxes in PST or other file formats such as EML, MSG, RTF, PDF and HTML.

Here are some advantages and disadvantages of the software,


  • User friendly and safe
  • Reduces the time required, can scan and display up to 4EDB ​​at a time
  • Guaranteed zero data loss


  • Requires the purchase of the license version in order to be able to use all functions

Why Stellar Converter for EDB?

  • Open or export up to 4EDB ​​files at once
  • Preview of all mailboxes and mail pieces in the EDB file
  • Converts both online and offline ExchangeEDB files
  • Facilitates the effortless extraction of important Exchange mailbox data such as e-mails, calendar, contacts, tasks, attachments
  • Converts EDB file to multiple formats like MSG, EML RTF, HTML and PDF
  • Facilitates targeted mail search and selective conversion
  • Compatible with the versions MS Exchange 2019, 2016, 2013, 2010, 2007, 2003, 2000 and 5.5
  • Supports Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista and Windows Server 16, 12, 8

What if the EDB file is damaged?

If the EDB file is corrupted due to a hardware and software problem or some other error, there are several ways to repair and view the data of the corrupted EDB file.

You can Eseutil - Use Microsoft's command line tool to fix EDB corruption problem. However, you will need some technical knowledge of the tool, how it works, and when it can fail or cause data loss. Otherwise, the problem may get worse.

Alternatively, you can take a GUI-based software driven approach and use Exchange recovery software such as Stellar Repair for Exchange use.

The software repairs corrupted files of the Exchange database (EDB) and save it as an OutlookPST file. The best thing about this software is its ability to handle large and multiple EDB files at once. Another key differentiator is the ability to export recovered mailboxes to Office 365 / Live Exchange servers.

The software repairs damaged ones with ease Exchange database files (EDB files) and save it as an OutlookPST file. The best thing about this software is its ability to handle large and multiple EDB files at once. Another key differentiator is the ability to export recovered mailboxes to Office 365 / LiveExchangeServer.

In summary

MicrosoftExchangeServer stores the mailbox data of the e-mail messaging client — MicrosoftOutlook — users or Exchange users in an EDB database file on the server. This EDB file contains important mail elements of the Exchange account users such as e-mails, tasks, attachments, contacts, etc.

You can open the EDB file from the Exchange admin center if you have access to the exchange server. However, if you don't have access to the exchange server, you can still open the EDB file by following the two different methods explained in this post. You can even use these methods to open an offline, unmounted, or damaged EDB file without an exchange server.

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