Discovering Distribution Lists using PowerShell

Do you have a requirement to understand how many Distribution Lists exist within your Exchange organization or need to understand if they actually being utilized? Well, this is something I have come across recently while working for the customer. They have a mass of distribution lists across their organization which they are trying to tidy up before migrating to Office 365. The organisation I was working for had over 100,000 distributions list but the state of them was unknown so what challenges did I face?

The challenges faced

  • Unknown the number of DLs that had 0 members
  • Unknown the number of DLs that had 0 managers
  • Unknown the number of DLs that had invalid characters

The solution… PowerShell

So the following script was created to obtain the all the attributes listed before, this enable to put together a business case for which distribution lists should be deleted and which should be migrated.

  • Distribution List Name
  • SamAccountName
  • GroupType
  • DistinguishedName
  • Managedby
  • memberdepartrestriction
  • memberjoinrestriction
  • primartysmtpaddress
  • Number of Members
# Call Distribution Lists
$dist = @(Get-DistributionGroup -resultsize unlimited)
# Start Transcript
Start-Transcript -Path $env:USERPROFILE\desktop\transcript.txt
# Report on Distribution List
foreach ($dl in $dist)
$count =@(Get-DistributionGroup $dl.samaccountname).count
$report = New-Object -TypeName PSObject
$report | Add-Member -MemberType NoteProperty -Name 'Group Name' -Value $dl.Name
$report | Add-Member -MemberType NoteProperty -Name 'samAccountname' -Value $dl.samaacountname
$report | Add-Member -MemberType NoteProperty -Name 'Group Type' -Value $dl.grouptype
$report | Add-Member -MemberType NoteProperty -Name 'DN' -Value $dl.distinguishedName
$report | Add-Member -MemberType NoteProperty -Name 'Manager' -Value $dl.managedby
$report | Add-Member -MemberType NoteProperty -Name 'Member Depart Restriction' -Value $dl.memberdepartrestriction
$report | Add-Member -MemberType NoteProperty -Name 'Member Join Restriction' -Value $dl.memberjoinrestriction
$report | Add-Member -MemberType NoteProperty -Name 'PrimarySMTPAddress' -Value $dl.primartysmtpaddress
$report | Add-Member -MemberType NoteProperty -Name 'Number of Members' -Value $count
Write-Host ('INFO: {0} has {1} members' -f $, ($count))
$reportoutput += $report
# Stop Transcript
# Report
$reportoutput | Export-Csv -Path $env:USERPROFILE\desktop\DistributionListReport.csv -NoTypeInformation -Encoding UTF8

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