I have a bunch of accounts disabled in AD. These users left the organization. However we do not delete their accounts incase they come back.

This creates issues in 0365 people search. I would like to delete their UPSA User Profile so that they will not show up in any search.

I tried Remove-PnPUserProfile but I keep getting this error: "[email protected] must be first be deleted from AAD before the user profile can be deleted"

Is there a way to delete the profile without deleting the AAD account? I can do this from the UI but I need to do it programmatically.

1 Answer 1


If you are syncing with your on-premises AD with Azure AD, you can create an OU on the on-prem AD Domain Controller named “EXITS”. Then move all the former employees to the “EXITS” OU. Then, configure your on-Prem AD ➡️ Azure AD sync to exclude that OU. On-premises, just ensure that all the accounts in the “EXITS” OU are disabled. Before doing so, I would also generate a new password for the account - don’t use a default password - so that if the account ever left the “EXITS” OU, the user would not have access.

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