Yes, I am looking at the permissions under Outlook, not the M: drive.
Whew.. okay. Sorry, I didn't mean to come off all snobby or seem like I think you're a newbie or something. It's just that you can't tell what a person's level of experience might be when you talk to someone on a message board.
The reason I did a repair was about a year ago, I did a repair on Internet Information Services. From then on, we could not use the email server for interoffice e-mail. Last month, I decided that I wanted that capability back, so I did a repair. I do not remember any messages coming up regarding .edb/.stm files.
Okay, hmm.. so you had to repair IIS because something fouled that up. We had to do that once although I don't remember all the details. In our case it was something about we had the original version of the URL scanner and silly me, I installed the newer version and that screwed things up real nice. Had to uninstall then re-install IIS. But I don't remember having to run Isinteg or .. or that other Exchange util, the name of which escapes me. Still, just for the giggles and grins, you might want to use those Exchange utils. I'm thinking: maybe whatever it was that killed IIS (because the action of repairing IIS wouldn't have done anything to pub.* or else it would've fouled up priv1.* too) must have also done something naughty to the public folder. So, at the very least, you want to check the integrity of the public folder and make sure there isn't any corruption or other problems.
Exchange Command Line Parameters for the Isinteg.exe Tool
You'll want to use this thing after hours because you have to take the public folder offline. Then again, you might decide, "well, what the heck, no one can post to the silly folder anyway, won't matter if it's offline" but they can still read posts, of course. So up to you. Depends on how much people need to read the posts vs. how much you hate sacrificing your non-working hours. ;)
Exchange 2000 Server Eseutil Command Line Switches
(Oh, that was it's name!)
That's the program that will fix things if there's a problem. Of course, you want to be sure you've got a fresh backup before you do anything. You can use Microsoft's own backup utility if you don't have anything else. How long this thing will take depends on a lot of factors: size of the database being repaired, speed of the server (processor speed, speed of the drive controllers, speed of the underlying drives, etc. all that good stuff). Oh, and of course, make sure you've got plenty of free space on the drive that holds your public .edb / .stm files.
If your Exchange server doesn't have enough free space, you do have another option.
How to Run Eseutil on a Computer without Exchange Server
And, last of all, incase anything goes horribly horribly wrong and restoring the backup doesn't work:
How to Use Log Files to Rebuild the Priv1.edb File
Everywhere it says "priv1.*", replace with "pub.*" (or whatever your public folder's file name is). Hope it doesn't come down to this, however.
Hey.. had another thought while I was browsing through Support.Microsoft.com. Do you suppose someone might've played around with the store permissions? (I keep thinking our problem is a "permission" thing..)
How To: Add Minimum Permissions Required for Mailbox Stores and Public Folder Stores
Delivery Refused for Message Sent to Public Folder
Oh, duh, and stupid me.. I keep forgetting to ask: do any errors show up in the Exchange server's Event Viewer when someone tries to post to the folder? That might give us a hint or two too.
Let me know what you find out..