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URGENT! - Repeating mail delivery

Posted on 2004-08-02
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Last Modified: 2013-11-15
I am using Exchange Server 2000 with SP3 on Windows 2000 Server SP4 build 2195. The AntiVirus installed is Symantec AntiVirus/Filtering for Exchange - Enterprise Edition version 8.6.

As my previous question had not been answered satisfactorily, there might be confusion due to the fact that I raised three questions altogether at the same time. Right now I am putting the most pressing issue that I have been experiencing for the past one month. Here's the story:

One of our internal user sent a mail to a several external recipients on July 16, 2004. The recipients did received the mail and communications among them went well. However, the next morning, these recipients again received the very same mail although the sender sent it only once. At first it was considered as an inconvenience, but when it became a daily routine, these external recipients complained. Recently, it was even several times submission in a day as depicted in the Message Tracking History as follows:

7/16/2004 9:02 AM SMTP: Message Submitted to Advanced Queue
7/16/2004 9:02 AM SMTP: Started Message Submission to Advanced Queue
7/16/2004 9:03 AM SMTP: Message Submitted to Categorizer
7/16/2004 9:03 AM SMTP: Started Outbound Transfer of Message to ...

7/17/2004 2:05 AM SMTP: Message Submitted to Advanced Queue
7/17/2004 2:05 AM SMTP: Started Message Submission to Advanced Queue
7/17/2004 2:06 AM SMTP: Message Submitted to Categorizer
7/17/2004 2:06 AM SMTP: Non-Delivered Report (NDR) Generated

7/18/2004 2:09 AM SMTP: Message Submitted to Advanced Queue
7/18/2004 2:11 AM SMTP: Started Message Submission to Advanced Queue
7/18/2004 2:11 AM SMTP: Message Submitted to Categorizer

        -                      -                        -                             -

It goes on until

7/30/2004 2:25 AM SMTP: Message Submitted to Advanced Queue
7/30/2004 2:30 AM SMTP: Started Message Submission to Advanced Queue
7/30/2004 2:30 AM SMTP: Message Submitted to Categorizer
7/30/2004 2:46 AM SMTP: Message Submitted to Advanced Queue
7/30/2004 2:56 AM SMTP: Started Message Submission to Advanced Queue
7/30/2004 2:56 AM SMTP: Message Submitted to Categorizer

7/31/2004 2:17 AM SMTP: Message Submitted to Advanced Queue
7/31/2004 2:19 AM SMTP: Started Message Submission to Advanced Queue
7/31/2004 2:19 AM SMTP: Message Submitted to Categorizer

8/1/2004 2:27 AM SMTP: Message Submitted to Advanced Queue
8/1/2004 2:32 AM SMTP: Started Message Submission to Advanced Queue
8/1/2004 2:32 AM SMTP: Message Submitted to Categorizer

8/2/2004 2:24 AM SMTP: Message Submitted to Advanced Queue
8/2/2004 2:30 AM SMTP: Started Message Submission to Advanced Queue
8/2/2004 2:30 AM SMTP: Message Submitted to Categorizer

8/2/2004 7:06 AM SMTP: Message Submitted to Advanced Queue
8/2/2004 7:06 AM SMTP: Started Message Submission to Advanced Queue
8/2/2004 7:06 AM SMTP: Message Submitted to Categorizer

8/2/2004 7:34 AM SMTP: Message Submitted to Advanced Queue
8/2/2004 7:34 AM SMTP: Started Message Submission to Advanced Queue
8/2/2004 7:34 AM SMTP: Message Submitted to Categorizer

8/3/2004 2:13 AM SMTP: Message Submitted to Advanced Queue
8/3/2004 2:14 AM SMTP: Started Message Submission to Advanced Queue
8/3/2004 2:14 AM SMTP: Message Submitted to Categorizer

The Event Viewer does not show anything inparticular. I searched for similar symptomp at the Microsoft's Discussion Group and found one or two entries with a solution to use MDBVU32. I tried to solution, but nothing worked. I even deleted the account & the mailbox, but the problem still persists.

Can anyone please help?

Thanks in advanced.


Hans

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Question by:hanslee12
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Expert Comment

by:Sembee
ID: 11700868
The message is stuck in the queue.
First instinct is that it is the AV software. Symantec doesn't have a brilliant reputation when it comes to Exchange.
If you have file level AV software make sure that it is set so that it doesn't scan any of the /exchsrvr directories.

Next I would stop all Exchange services and have a look at the actually queue folder in mailroot. You should see some files listed in there. Open each one in notepad (don't associate them with notepad - just use Open With or drag and drop on to notepad and make sure that you don't enable the always open with option). Find the message that is looping and delete it. Don't just delete everything as there could be valid messages in there.
Once you are sure that the message has gone - restart the Exchange services.

Simon.
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Expert Comment

by:alshahnaz
ID: 11701008
please see if relay seeting is set properly.see if it is configured publicly accesible.if it is so then some is flooding others with many copies of the same message.it might be some type of spam.my suggestion is to remove antivirus program and check.

Shahnaz
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Author Comment

by:hanslee12
ID: 11711369
Sembee,

The antivirus (Symantec) does not go anywhere near the restricted directories as advised by Microsoft in its Knowledge Base. Everyday I check the queue and find nothing there. I even checked the BadMail and the Pickup folder, but none I found so far.

FYI, everyday the server is re-started after backup process.


Shahnaz,

I've check mail relay configuration and it was securely lock, meaning that it allwos only to those who have specific range of IPs only (relay for branch offices). I even checked using ORDB and here's the result:

The host you submitted at ORDB.org (xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx), has been thoroughly checked, and does not seem to permit relaying.

FYI, this problem happens only to several external users and for a number of e-mails only. Other e-mails are delivered once and that's it. I suspect that this has something to do with the mail database structure (.edb & .stm), that something got stuck there, but how do I do that? I don't see any peculiarities when I used MDBVU.

Any other idea as to how this happens?

Thanks.


Hans
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LVL 104

Accepted Solution

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Sembee earned 500 total points
ID: 11714206
Why are you restarting the server every day? Exchange is designed to run 24x7. This sounds like you are doing some kind of file level backup of your Exchange files which isn't a good idea. They can easily corrupt the database and cause more problems further down the line.

If you are stopping the Exchange server overnight for backups to run then the routine database maintainance isn't running. Exchange does work on the db overnight.

You should be using Exchange aware backup software - even NTBACKUP will do the job to backup the files. Exchange is a database and needs to be handled as such.

If the queues are empty then it comes down to two things.

1. The Exchange AV
2. Corruption in the database.

If you are restating Exchange as frequently as it appears then the second option really starts to look like the culprit.

Any error messages in the log files of the server?

Simon.
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Author Comment

by:hanslee12
ID: 11732524
Simon,

I can rule out the Exchange AV, because I checked thoroughly the setting and I found that the configuration conforms to the requirement set forth by Microsoft.

This time I have good news and bad news. The bad news is I still do not know what caused  the problem, while the good news is: I solved the problem. It turned out that the it was the database that created this whole mess. I used the ISINTEG command to check the database integrity and fix it if necessary. After doing that yesterday, I checked the Message Tracking Center and found there was no more repeating e-mails delivered to the recipients. I will closely monitor it and if within a week it does not create anymore problem, I am going to close the case.

Thank you for your help.


Hans
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