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Transfering the MS Exchange DB from Drive C to Drive D

Posted on 2005-05-02
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Hi,

I have known for a while that my MS Exchange db had to be moved, but I posponed as much as I could, to avoid potential problems that could occur from doing so.

The setup was done prior to me being hired here, and the guy before me, not knowing what he was doing, setup the Ms Exchange DB on the C drive, with only a few gigs free and let the D and E drive empty with 50 gig free each.

I now have only 5 gig left on my C drive and need to move my DB.

I will obviously start with an offline backup of the Exchange DB, then move the file using the ms tools, then turn the services back online. I looked up other places and found some info on how to do it, but I prefer to ask the EE community to get a good feeling on how to do it.


What I need help with is this :

What is the Ms command to move the Exchange db and what security precautions should I take, and is there any verifications I need to do after moving it ?

Thanks !
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Question by:matanguay
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LVL 22

Expert Comment

by:kristinaw
ID: 13908389
You didn't mention version, but it should be pretty much the same for 2k or 03:

http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;q257184

http://www.petri.co.il/move_exchange_stores_to_a_different_disk.htm

http://www.smallbizserver.net/Default.aspx?tabid=60

This is a pretty straightforward, easy process. Just make sure you have a good backup and it's really no sweat. Are you leaving the logs on your D: drive? Make sure you keep an eye on disk space on that drive and that your periodically clear out your badmail directory:

http://hellomate.typepad.com/exchange/2003/07/dealing_with_ba.html

hth,
Kris.
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Author Comment

by:matanguay
ID: 13908487
version is 2003 .. sorry about that
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Author Comment

by:matanguay
ID: 13908495
I want to transfer the whole thing.

What is the folder containing the db again .. I don't remember.
What file verification should I do after doing so ? .. should I defragment .. since it was never done in over a year ...
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by:kristinaw
ID: 13908496
ok, several of the links i posted were for 2000, but it's the same process. i believe the petri link even says 2000/2003. I've done this many times myself with no issues.

Kris.
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Expert Comment

by:kristinaw
ID: 13908509
read through the articles i posted, when you look in the ESM at the place where you'll actually tell the file to move you'll see it's path. as for where you're moving it to, it can go anywhere on the D: you'd like it to go. I usually do D:\Exchsrvr\database name as my standard.

as for file verification, if the stores mount and you can access you're mail that's pretty much all the verification you need.

as for defragmenting, how large is your store?

Kris.
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Author Comment

by:matanguay
ID: 13908576
it is about 5 gig

the EDB file is about 5gig and the STM file is about 1.5gigs

What do you suggest ?
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Expert Comment

by:kristinaw
ID: 13908582
how many users do you have on the system?
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Author Comment

by:matanguay
ID: 13908590
employees : 40
mailboxes : total of 85 (a lot of public mailboxes for our online business website ...)
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Author Comment

by:matanguay
ID: 13908599
its not that much but users are starting to use Exchange to store everything and the do not delete their emails anymore .. .. some **** happened and they prefered to keep everything instead of deleting as they come ...
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by:kristinaw
ID: 13908654
well, that might be fine for now, but that's going to cause big problems down the road. performance will start to decrease, Outlook will take forever to open, etc.

also, with no mail limits you leave yourself prone to more damage if a virus happens to get loose in your mail system. i would work immediately with senior mgmt to develop a comprehensive mail usage and storage policy that includes mailbox size limits. even if the limit is 1 gig, a high limit is better than no limit at all. then work on training to show people how to delete their sent items, deleted items, save large attachments, etc. remember, it costs money to store this stuff. also remember that recovery time is directly related to database size.

another thing to consider, if you're working with the standard version of Exchange you have a database size limit of 16 gigs. If you hit this limit (edb and stm combined, i think), your database will shut down.

but anyways, 5 gig isn't that large, and if no one is deleteing anything it's unlikely you have a lot of free to space to recover anyway (which is what a defrag does). I would hold off on that for now.  

hth,
Kris.
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Author Comment

by:matanguay
ID: 13910726
I heard it was more stable and easier to use a doslike application given with Exchange 2000-2003 that allows to move the DB folder instead of doing it through the interface ...

do you know something about taht ?
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Expert Comment

by:kristinaw
ID: 13910861
I have never heard of this. I would think if something like this existed there would be a link to it in the MS article i posted on how to move databases. I also have never seen\heard of it whilst studying for the Exchange related exams, and have never seen reference to it on this site. When I've moved databases i've used the procedures outlined in the MS article I posted and have never had an issue.

if anyone had anything to add to what i've posted, i hope they would've done so by now. that's usually how it works anyways.

let me know if you have any more questions,
Kris.
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Author Comment

by:matanguay
ID: 13910904
well good enough

as per all the related articles, here is what I plan to do :

The night before the move :
1. Usual Online backup (backup exec with exchange agent)

The day of the move :
1. Shutdown exchange services
2. Offline backup (backup complete EXCHANGE folder)
3. Restart exchange services
4. go in properties, and change location
5. Shutdown services
6. Move files
7. Restart Services
8. Test mail access (with at least 5 user mailboxes)
9. Shutdown services (again)
10. Defragment DB
11. Restart services
12. Put a 500megs limit to everyone, 1gig to managers and myself - from the active directory

Would that be good ??
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kristinaw earned 2000 total points
ID: 13910980
you won't need to do step 5, 6, 7, Exchange will dismount the stores and move them for you. This is an exchange process, so the services have to be running. Exchange will dismount the stores and move them for you, it will then remount them when it completes the move.

you also don't want to do step 9, the services have to be running for this to work. All you will need to do is dismount the store you want to defragment. See the following:

http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;192185&sd=tech

Be sure to do a backup as soon as you can after defragging (but don't overwrite your old backup)

for 12, i would do a store policy that gives everyone a 500 meg limit, then use AD to override selected users to 1 gig. this way you'll be sure not to miss anyone and won't have to worry about setting limits for new uses when they come on board.

sounds like you have a good plan, but you're almost being too careful ;). don't worry, you'll be fine. and yes, 500megs is fine if that works for you. any limit is better than none at all.

kris.
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Author Comment

by:matanguay
ID: 13911464
Even if I closed it and gave you the points, can you please tell me how to put a policy limit in Exchange.

Thanks !
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LVL 22

Expert Comment

by:kristinaw
ID: 13911662
Here's the link on how to do it:

http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;319583

The link above shows you how to manually set the policy on an individual store, which is fine if you only have 1 store. Setting limits in AD will override the store policy, which is exactly what you need.

In my org we set the warning limit slightly below the send limit is the actualy mailbox size limit, the send/receive limit is much higher than the send limit, because we don't wan't to prevent people from receiving mail if they're out on vacation, whatever, and hit their limit. But preventing sending is a great way to get them to clean up. It also will help prevent the spread of viruses.

hth,
Kris.
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