Today I spent some time playing with Exchange 2007, and I’ve found a way to mount a VSS Exchange Backup (such as that done with Windows Server Backup [imaging]) as a recovery storage group. I only just figured it out, and we’ll be writing up more comprehensive instructions shortly.
But here’s what I did:
Firstly – restore your backup to an alternate location – Follow the steps here How to restore Exchange 2007, but in step 8, choose an Alternate location, and restore the files to somewhere like your desktop or temp directory.
Second – create a RSG in Exchange Server – start the Exchange Management Console > Toolbox > Database Recovery Management. Then enter in the name of your server to connect to the server, and you’ll get the task list. Click on Create a recovery storage group and follow the prompts to create it.
Third – copy over the backup database to the RSG location and rename the files. Copy all the files from the relevant storage group (restored from your backup in step one) into the empty directory created for the RSG in step two. Then you’ll need to rename each file starting with “E” to make it start with “R” instead. Just change the first letter of each file from “E” to “R”.
Fourth – mount the RSG. Do this from the Exchange Troubleshooting Assistant (the tool you used in Step two).
You can then merge mailboxes across from the RSG to the main storage group using the Exchange Troubleshooting Assistant. Don’t forget to dismount the store and delete the RSG once you’re finished.