Applies to: Exchange Server 2010 SP3, Exchange Server 2010 SP2

Topic Last Modified: 2008-10-13

You may receive the following error when you attempt to remove an arbitration mailbox:

Can't remove the arbitration mailbox "{0}", because it is being used for the approval workflow for existing recipients that either membership restrictions or moderation enabled. Please either disable the approval features on those recipients or specify a different arbitration mailbox for those recipients before removing this arbitration mailbox.

An arbitration mailbox can be used to handle the approval workflow for moderated recipients and distribution group membership approvals. If you receive this error, you need to do the following:

  1. Determine which recipients use this arbitration mailbox for handling approval workflow using the Get-Recipient cmdlet.

    For example, if you want to find all recipients that use the arbitration mailbox AMBX1 for approval features, you can run the following command:

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    Get-Recipient -RecipientPreviewFilter {ArbitrationMailbox -eq "CN=AMBX1,CN=Users,DC=contoso,DC=com"}
    If you don't want to type in the entire distinguished name, you can use variables instead. The following three commands accomplish the same goal as the one above without having to type the distinguished name for the arbitration mailbox. The first command stores the arbitration mailbox in the variable $ArbitrationMailbox, and the second command stores the distinguished name in the $ArbitrationMailboxDN variable. Finally, the third command returns all recipients that use AMBX1 as the arbitration mailbox.

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    $ArbitrationMailbox = Get-Mailbox -Identity "AMBX1" -Arbitration
    $ArbitrationMailboxDN = $ArbitrationMailbox.DistinguishedName
    Get-Recipient -RecipientPreviewFilter {ArbitrationMailbox -eq $ArbitrationMailboxDN}
  2. Either specify a different arbitration mailbox using the ArbitrationMailbox parameter or disable that feature.

    For example, assume that the distribution group All Employees uses the arbitration mailbox AMBX1 for moderation. You can run the following command to specify a different arbitration mailbox:

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    Set-DistributionGroup -Identity "All Employees" -ArbitrationMailbox "AMBX2"
    Alternatively, you can run the following command to disable moderation:

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    Set-DistributionGroup -Identity "All Employees" -ModerationEnabled $false

After you reconfigure all recipients that use the arbitration mailbox for approval features, you will be able to delete the arbitration mailbox.

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