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Rebuild exchange 2000 upgraded from 5.5

Posted on 2006-06-12
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I've had repeated problems with an Exchange 2000 server that was upgraded from 5.5. Space issues, backup issues, various services don't work, I waste time investigating, because not all services are required. I had a consultant in a few months ago who suggested that I rebuild the server from scratch, as it was "messy and inconsistent - very difficult to troubleshoot  issues".

I would like to know how to create a new Exchange 2000 server, but have only been working with Exchange a few months (worked with cc:Mail/Notes/Domino for years). I also need to do this with a minimum (or no) outlay of funds, if possible.

The mail server is a Dell PE 2650, running W2K server with current patches. Assistance greatly appreciated.
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Question by:10percent
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december41991 earned 250 total points
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Is your exchange server working now ?
Did you run exbpa?

www.exbpa.com and read the report. let us know. Your problem defined is very vauge and I don't suggest scratch policy.

Regards

Dominic
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by:redseatechnologies
redseatechnologies earned 250 total points
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Hi 10percent,

A rebuild is a SPECTACULAR opportunity to test your backup solution.

Backup your exchange data (twice) and then do a reinstall of exchange properly.

Things to consider (depending on how you back up exchange) are you should keep the same Site name and server name (and obviously domain name)

*I* would do the following;

1. Install an IDE Hard drive into the server
2. Create a software mirror on that IDE Hard drive from windows (in disk management)
3. Confirm that your mirror works (you should be able to modify the boot.ini file and boot directly to the IDE Drive)
4. Back up your data again to tape (this is the data you will be using for the rebuild - the IDE drive was just a failsafe)
5. Confirm that your tape(s) have data on them
6. Uninstall exchange
7. Reinstall exchange (Same Site name and organization name)
8. Repatch exchange to the same level as it was before
9. Restore your data from tape

The following links may help or at least give you some more info
http://www.brienposey.com/kb/manually_reinstalling.asp
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/prodtechnol/exchange/2000/support/dbrecovr.mspx
http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;320202
http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=260378
http://www.msexchange.org/tutorials/Disaster_Recovery.html

Hope that helps,

-red
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by:10percent
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Dominic - the server is up at the moment, but was down for two hours yesterday whilst I fumbled my way through the directory structure that is spread out over three drives. I have downloaded the analysis tool from www.exbpa.com  as you suggested, but have yet to run it. I will - because I'm curious to see if it can pin point  the problem(s). Thanks for you response. 10
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by:10percent
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Red - I'm inclined to agree with you, if I can minimize the chances of failure, and have a clean install of Exchange, then life will be rosy indeed. However, I remain cautious. As I stated before, I am quite inexperienced with Exchange. What do I need to back up? There is a legacy backup job in place, but I don't have a lot of faith that it is capturing the data the needs to be captured.

When I restore the data - which data do I restore? Obviously, I want to retain mailboxes, mail lists, public folders and the like, but I don't want to arbitrarily restore everything and have the issues I'm having now.

I apologize if the answers are in the links you've provided - I'm off to look at those now. Thanks for your response, hopefully, I'll be able to muddle through this.......10
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by:10percent
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Dominic, can I run the analysis tool during production hours? I can't seem to find anything specifying whether or not this tool is disruptive. AS I'm already hiding out from the angry mobs in my server room, I'd like to avoid any further interruptions. :-D 10
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by:10percent
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The scan has finished, and has provided an awful lot of information, but what do I do with it?

10
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by:december41991
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Red color information is what we need to know. The scan is very user friendly and will tell how to fix those. Can you share it.

Regards
Dominic
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by:redseatechnologies
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Hi 10percent,

All you really need is the mailboxes and public folders - you should back up more than that to tape, but that is all you REALLY need to restore.  I mean, that is what users will notice if it isnt there :)

If you backup using the IDE mirror as mentioned above, AND the tape backup - then it doesnt really matter if you forget to back something up (you will anyway, we all miss something at some point) the worst case scenario, is that you boot to the IDE drive, and it works as if you never touched it!

Then you can either, backup more data to tape (the ide mirror will be running your backup software and everything else) or check to see what setting you have forgotten to write down.

This is also a good learning opportunity, if you are going to be the one in charge of this server, you need to actually do a restore of data - because that server will die at some point, and then you wont have the luxury of an IDE hard drive

-red
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by:10percent
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My apologies for not getting back to this thread. I have been dealing with another issue for the last threee weeks that has consumed my thoughts and my time.

Please split the points - I will get back to this project at some point and expect that this post will be a great help.
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