How to Export Exchange Contacts to CSV?

Contacts are an important part of the business or personal data that nobody wants to lose. However, you may lose them due to unforeseen circumstances, such as server crash, database damage, storage failure, virus or malware intrusion, etc. Thus, creating and maintaining a regular backup of Contacts is critical to avoid losing them to such unforeseen events.

In this article, you will learn how to export Contacts from Exchange Server to a Comma-Separated Values (CSV) file using the PowerShell cmdlets to create a backup. CSV file format is widely supported by Outlook, Exchange, Office 365, and other platforms, allowing you to import, restore, or access your Contacts quickly.

Steps to Export Exchange Contacts to CSV

Below we have discussed the process to export contacts from your Exchange Server to PST format and then convert it to CSV format using the Outlook Import/Export wizard.

Step 1: Export Contacts to PST

In Exchange Server, you can use the PowerShell cmdlets in Exchange Management Shell (EMS) to export all the contacts to Outlook importable PST format. The steps are as follows:

Assign Mailbox Import/Export Permission

To assign the Mailbox Import Export role, open Exchange Management Shell and then execute the following command:

New-ManagementRoleAssignment -Role “Mailbox Import Export” -User John

Create Shared Folder

Create a folder at any location on your Exchange Server and then follow these steps:

  • Right-click on the folder and choose Give access to > Specific People…
  • From the dropdown, choose Everyone and click Add.
  • Ensure you provide Read/Write permission to the folder and click Share.
  • Note down the access path. In this case (see the image below), it is \\IB-L0213\PSTContacts.

This is the shared folder path location we will use to export and save the PST file containing the Contacts.

Use PowerShell Cmdlets to Export Exchange Contacts

Once the Shared Folder path is ready, open Exchange Management Shell and execute the following cmdlets to export all the Contacts to PST format.

New-MailboxExportRequest -Mailbox MailboxName  -IncludeFolders “#Contacts#” -ExcludeDumpster -FilePath \\IB-L0213\PSTContacts\FileName.pst

To check the progress and verify if all the contacts are exported successfully, run the following command:

Get-MailboxExportRequestStatistics –Identity MailboxName

If it displays 100 in the PercentComplete column, copy the PST file to the system where Outlook is installed.

Step 2: Import PST into Outlook

Once you have the PST file, open Outlook and follow these steps to import the PST file containing the contacts into the Outlook client.

  • In Outlook, go to File > Open & Export > Import/Export.
  • Choose Import from another program or file and click Next.
  • Choose Outlook Data File (.pst) and click Next.
  • Click Browse, select the PST file containing the Exchange contacts, and click Next.
  • Select the Contacts folder and click Finish.
  • This will import all the Exchange contacts into your Outlook profile.

Step 3: Export Contacts to CSV

Now that you have imported the Exchange Contacts from the PST file into your Outlook profile, you can use the Import/Export wizard to export the imported Contacts to CSV format. The steps are as follows:

  • In Outlook, click File > Open & Export and choose Import/Export.
  • Click Export to a file and click Next.
  • Click Comma Separated Values and click Next.
  • Choose the Contacts and click Next.
  • Click Browse to choose a save location and then click Next.
  • Click Finish.

All your contacts in your Outlook profile, including the imported Exchange Contacts from the PST file, will be exported to a CSV file at your desired location.

Limitations

Although this workaround allows you to export Exchange Contacts to CSV format, you may encounter the following issues:

  • Missing fields or information from Contacts.
  • Empty cells or fields in the CSV file.
  • Duplicate or missing Contacts.  
  • You have to repeat these steps multiple times to export contacts from all mailboxes to CSV format. Thus, it requires significant effort and time.

Conclusion

Exchange Server does not allow exporting mail items, such as Contacts, to CSV format. Therefore, if you need to export Exchange Contacts to CSV format, you must first export a copy of Contacts to PST format using the Exchange Admin Center (EAC) or Exchange Management Shell (EMS). Once you have the Exchange Contacts in the PST file, you can import the PST into Outlook contacts and then export the Contacts folder from Outlook to CSV format via Import/Export wizard. However, the process is time-consuming as you have to run the steps multiple times to export all Exchange Contacts to CSV format.

Instead of going a long way, you can use an EDB to PST converter software, such as Stellar Converter for EDB, to scan, extract, and export all contacts from the Exchange databases to CSV format in a few clicks. It exports Contacts from all mailboxes to CSV or any other desired format with complete integrity and precision. You can also use the software to export contacts, mailboxes, or other mail items from an offline Exchange database directly to a live Exchange Server, Office 365 tenant, or save them as PST files.

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