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Exchange Growth 3 GB overnight

Hello Experts,
I am having a problem with Exchange 2003. Sunday afternoon, the Priv1.edb file had grown 3GB since Friday and had filled up the partition resulting in the mailbox store dismounting. I cleared around 2 GB of space last night and then this morning the priv1.edb had grown enough to fill the drive up again. The priv1.edb is 23 GB now. How can I figure out where the growth is coming from and what can I do to stop it?
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Meadowadmin
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Meadowadmin
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4 Solutions
 
zelron22Commented:
A quick check would be to look at the information store, at the mailboxes, and see if any are unusually large.  Then you could take a look at that user's mailbox to see what is going on with it.  

You can also implement mailbox limits on your users through the Information Store or through individual mailbox properties.  

It sounds like someone is sending around files with large attachments.
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MesthaCommented:
This is a duplication of an earlier question.
http://www.experts-exchange.com/Microsoft/Server_Applications/Q_24167875.html

You are not allowed to offer more than 500 points for a single question, therefore either have this question deleted or ask the moderators to reduce the points to 250 each using the "Request Attention" button.

-M
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jacodaletCommented:
Ok,
Firstly, run exmon on the server to see what user is causing the problem.
If you do not know on how to use exmon - use this link below
http://www.msexchange.org/tutorials/Microsoft-Exchange-Server-User-Monitor.html 

To insure that you server health is 100% you can use the eseutil command
First make a backup - if you do not know how to use the eseutil command use link below
http://www.msexchange.org/tutorials/Exchange-ISINTEG-ESEUTIL.html


Make sure you got enought storage space (your mailbox store 23G you have to have around 50G free space)
Create another store or multiple stores - Managers - Directors - Marketing examples.
Then start moving the mailboxes to the other stores that you have created.
Once all done, you can dismount the store and do a offline defrag - this may take a while depending on the space and on the speed of the server.
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MeadowadminAuthor Commented:
While I am looking at the above posts, let me give you a little more information. There are 2 partitions on this server. The C partition is 8 GB with 2 GB free and the E partition is 33.8 GB with no free space. The priv1.edb is 22.9 GB and the priv1.stm is 10 GB...both are located on the E partition.
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TWBitCommented:
Also look at the store's rentention time for deleted items (you can see how much is in each mailbox's Deleted Items in the ESM mailbox view by adding that column).  If you knock it down to zero days (clear check to allow items to be deleted without backup) and let the IS Maintenance tasks run, this will free up some space in your store.  The size of the edb won't decrease unless you do an offline defrag (which you probably won't have the space for), but you'll now have whitespace in the edb that will get filled up before the edb grows again.  But the real need here is more disk space - you're fighting a losing battle.
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MeadowadminAuthor Commented:
There was 1 GB of pagefile on te E partition. I reduced it by 256 mb to give me room to mount the mailbox store. It came back up and I had the 249 users archive. The largest of the mailboxes was 500 MB and the default mailbox size was set to 115 MB, but about 20 users had larger than default. I just changed everyone down to 80 MB, with the exception of some of the executive staff, and had everyone archive. It appears as though the mailbox size showing in ESM might not be reflecting the archive activity that has been happening for the last couple of hours.  
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jacodaletCommented:
That is the problem - you cannot have no free space on the store - remember that exchange you have to allow free space (double) the amount as that is what MS recommends.
I had exactly the same problem and the only way was to add more disk - if you cannot do that see if you can add an external storage device like a NAS or SAN
Remember that if you remove a mailbox from your Exchange your store size will still be the same size and the only way is to get an additional storage device.

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jacodaletCommented:
Or even a DAS device.
That will help you alot
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MeadowadminAuthor Commented:
Everything is running ok at the moment with 500 MB of free space. I am going to do an offline defrag to regain around 8 GB of space. Have any of you ever done an offline defrag to a mapped drive or a usb drive? Any issue come to mind?
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jacodaletCommented:
You offline defrag will stop, as you do not have enought diskspace, and if you run it with 500mb of disk space you stand a big chance of crashing your store.

Defragmenting an Exchange 2000 or Exchange 2003 database
Note Defragmenting a database requires free disk space equal to 110 percent of the size of the database being processed.

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/192185

Get an additional storage device (DAS) and move your store to the other server.

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jacodaletCommented:
Otherwise try this.

Map an external storage device, to a drive
dismount store
open command prompt
the eseutil is located in c:\program files\microsoft\exchange\bin\eseutil
run the esetul from the mapped drive that got much more free space, eseutil will create temp cache file on the mapped drive so you will be ok with out running out of space.
how long it will run will depend on your system speed and of your external drive speed.

good luck

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MeadowadminAuthor Commented:
I finally found out why the database grew so fast. Large amount of pictures were emailed around to one person who in turn emailed them to others and so on. Thank you all for your help.
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zelron22Commented:
Just like I said in the last line of my first post...  :)
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