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Help! MTA & Internet Mail Service won't start! Error 2140

Posted on 2004-08-04
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Last Modified: 2008-01-09
NT Server 4.0 SP6A. Exchange 5.5 SP4. -  All of a sudden this morning my MTA service won't start, nor will the IMS - because of the MTA.  in the event log I see a Service Control Manager error:

The Microsoft Exchange Internet Mail Service service depends on the Microsoft Exchange Message Transfer Agent service which failed to start because of the following error:

The operation completed successfully.

If I try to manually start the MTA I see:

Could not start the Microsoft Exchange Message Transfer Agent service on \\Server Name
Error 2140: An internal Windows NT error occurred.

Never seen these before.  Researched the errors already to some extent.  Checked password on services.  OK.  Checked disk space.  OK.  All other Exchange & Exchange related services are running fine.  Don't understand why suddenly the MTA won't run.

Any ideas???
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Question by:2Geeks
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Expert Comment

by:marc_nivens
ID: 11717990
You should have some errors in the application log that correspond with the MTA failing to start.  If you could post them here we could help you figure out the problem much quicker.  
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Author Comment

by:2Geeks
ID: 11718010
Also:

Event ID: 9400
Source: MSExchangeMTA
Category: Field Engineering

A Fatal MTA error has occurred. The file SCT.INP could not be opened.
[BASE MAIN BASE 1] [16]

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Expert Comment

by:ninpokai
ID: 11718621
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Expert Comment

by:marc_nivens
ID: 11719115
The fact that the file couldn't be opened is a clue to the problem.  Either that file is missing (it should be in the mtadata run directory), permissions on it are messed up, or the registry path that points to the mtadata run directory is invalid.  Try these steps:

1.  Copy sct.inp from the mtadata folder on the CD, put it in the mtadata folder on the server.  If you have 2 mtadata folders, you will need to put it in the one without all the .dat files.

2.  See if the file is read only, if it is uncheck read only.

3.  Open your registry editor.  Go to HKLM\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\MSExchangeMTA\Parameters.  Find the value called MTA Run Directory, make sure its pointing to the location of your mtadata files.  If this points to an invalid location, change it to point to the correct location.
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Author Comment

by:2Geeks
ID: 11726136
Registry looks OK.  Nothing in either queue.
My progress thus far:
Marc, I did just that.  replaced the file off of the CD. Then attempted to start the MTA again.  Still failed.  In the event viewer this time, another fatal error telling me a different file could not be opened.  So I replaced it also. Then tried yet again to start the MTA.  Still failed.  Looking this time for another file that wasn't there.  It seems that something happened to blow away many files in the MTA folder, 'cause I went through this routine and replaced a total of 22 files.  I guess I could have copied the entire folder from the CD at once, however I wanted to just replace each file only as needed first. No more and no less.  Mostly .cfg, .tlp, and .xv2 files.  By the end of my day, MTA finally would start and mail was being received.  I still, however have about 3 pages of Warnings in the Event viewer.  Now I need to work on cleaning those up and see if I can get back to normal again.  These are mostly of the following type:

Event ID: 2125
Source: MSExchangeMTA
Category: Resource

Statistics for DBI call (DB Server): file writes MAIN BASE, reads 1,
cache hits 296, misses %5.  Attributes %6, value number %7, Object ID:
%8 (00000000 => N/A). Caller %12 (%9 %10 %11) (8)

(Tried instructions in Q244035 but these still occurr)


Another looks like:

Event ID: 9330
Source: MSExchangeMTA
Category: Directory Access

An error occurred reading a value from the directory. A call to
DS_WAIT () has returned the error 44. [BASE IL OPERATOR 21 491]
(10)




And:

Event ID:3010
Source:MSExchangeIMC
Category:SMTP Interface Events

An attempt to connect to host msmc.net failed.





Also, when opening Exchange Administrator and going into Internet Mail Service, I receive:

Extension 'SMTP' could not be loaded.
The specified module could not be found.

Microsoft Windows MT
ID no: 0xc002007e

Abort   Retry   Ignore



Just realized also that outgoing mail (SMTP) is not sending.

Event ID: 9316
Source MSExchangeMTA
Category: Interface

An RPC error occurred. No data was sent over the
RPC connection. Locality table (LTAB) index 239. Windows NT error:
9317. The MTA will attempt to recover the RPC connection. [BASE IL
INCOMING RPC 27 522] (12)


followed by a few more RESOURCE category warnings.

I need to get mail working both ways again.  Any more ideas???
Thanks.

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Author Comment

by:2Geeks
ID: 11726154
My mistake, it is sending.  Just taking longer than usual to leave the outbox sometimes.
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Expert Comment

by:ninpokai
ID: 11726170
so it is working with the exception of all the errors?
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Author Comment

by:2Geeks
ID: 11726319
Getting lots of these RESOURCE category warning events.
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Author Comment

by:2Geeks
ID: 11726330
It looks to be working.  Although I'm not sure if it is working "properly" or just how stable it is at the moment.
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Expert Comment

by:ninpokai
ID: 11726335
First thing is make sure you have a back up of all your mailboxes.  Sounds really peculiar.  Are you running a RAID?  If so are any of the drives causing you any problems, perhaps not syncing up correctly?
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Expert Comment

by:ninpokai
ID: 11726397
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Author Comment

by:2Geeks
ID: 11726750
Yes on the RAID 5 setup.  No drive issues to report however. Checked also Q196924 no build version conflict there either. Will check the above links also.
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Author Comment

by:2Geeks
ID: 11727440
Yesterday I replaced the info* files per 11992338.  Looked at registry value per 247782. It is as it should be.  would you recomend reapplying Exch SP4 since I've rebuilt a good portion of the MTA folder?  I'm not sure what effect it will have.
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Author Comment

by:2Geeks
ID: 11763822
Any Thoughts??
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Accepted Solution

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ninpokai earned 500 total points
ID: 11765307
I would def reapply the patch...
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Author Comment

by:2Geeks
ID: 11776144
Ok.  That seems to have cleared up all the Resource category warning events.  I still get one:

Event ID: 9330
Source: MSExchangeMTA
Category: Directory Access

An error occurred reading a value from the directory. A call to
DS_WAIT() has returned the error 44. [BASE IL OPERATOR 21 491]
(10)

Can't seem to find reference to this event anywhere.  Not sure what it means.
But overall things are looking much better now.
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Expert Comment

by:ninpokai
ID: 11776545
do you have norton on that server?
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Author Comment

by:2Geeks
ID: 11783115
No Norton.  McAfee VirusScan, Groupshield, & Outbreak Manager.
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Expert Comment

by:ninpokai
ID: 11783129
I had a similar problem where i had to purchase Norton Mail Security since the regular virus scans cause some problems in Exchange.  I wonder what would happen if you un-installed and looked at your even log....
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Author Comment

by:2Geeks
ID: 11785255
Maybe adding the exchange data to the VirusScan exclusions list?? I would think that should covered already by Groupshield. Am I correct?
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Author Comment

by:2Geeks
ID: 11785591
This Warning Event occurs whenever the MTA is started. If I exclude the .edb files from the "On-Access Scan" in McAfee, then stop and restart the MTA, I still receive the Warning Event.
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