Microsoft finally releases their PST capture tool. Here’s the article from Tony Redmond. Check it out and post what you think about it.

Thoughtsofanidlemind's Blog

A collective sigh settled upon the worldwide Exchange community after Microsoft’s much-anticipated but late release of their free-to-use PST Capture tool occurred today. The tool was originally announced in July 2011 for delivery by the end of the year. Essential testing, especially through a restricted external test by some members of Microsoft’s Technology Adoption Program (TAP), slowed the release. However, the tool is now available for download from Microsoft’s web site (updated for PST Capture 2.0 Released 20 February 2013) and you can make your own mind up whether the software fits the bill in your circumstances. Some documentation is available. However, it’s pretty sparse at present and needs to be filled out with experience and tips and techniques from actual deployments. Prepare for a flood of blog posts! In the meantime, I offer some thoughts on the challenges that exist in any PST ingestion project – including the indigestion…

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Symptoms vs. Diagnosis

I have often had people ask me for help on a technical problem. Usually it starts off with something is broken or this stopped working. Nearly every time, what I’m given is their guess at the diagnosis.  This can waste tremendous amounts of time and if you are getting your help from a consultant, lots of money too.  Where things should really start is with the symptoms.

Starting with what you think the problem is, immediately puts the helper in that mental framework and starts closing them off to other possibilities. I know it is very tempting to be absolutely certain that we are on the right track and just need that final question answered. I do it myself. BUT, if we would instead start off with giving the symptoms of the problem and then start going through the diagnostic steps we have taken, I have found that we usually get to the solution more quickly. Don’t give in to the temptation to say, “I know it has to be the flux capacitor, so I did this but it still doesn’t work.” Tell your colleague or contractor or whoever you are asking for help from that, “The engine is running, I’m able to drive it, I put in the date and time of my destination, but when I reach 88 miles an hour, the car doesn’t travel through time.”

Give it a try the next time you are looking for help from someone. Remember this the next time someone else asks you for help and have them start at the beginning by JUST stating the symptoms. I think you will be pleasantly surprised.