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How can I reduce the amount of memory usage for the Windows Internal Database MICROSOFT##SSEE (WSUS) on my SBS2003R2 server?

Posted on 2009-04-09
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Last Modified: 2013-11-10
Hi experts,
We have a single SBS2003R2 DC running basically everything (unfortunately).  SQL Server is running Exchange, WSUS 3.0, Sharepoint, Backup Exec.

System Specs:
SBS 2003 32-bit
Dual Core Xeon 5130 CPU x 2
4 GB RAM (recognizing 3,582 MB)
3 x 500GB Raid 5 as a single drive

We have approximately 40 windows XP clients utilizing the server but not all are connected to the network at once.  Our consultants use laptops and are not always in the office so server load is generally low.

For quite some time now, I have been noticing very high memory usage (allocated memory) through the SBS Monitoring performance report.  I've discovered that my Internal Database (MICROSOFT##SSEE), which I assume is WSUS 3.0, has almost 1 GB of allocated memory.  I somehow don't think that's right!  The next highest usage is:

Exchange Store using 600MB
SBS Monitoring Database using 155MB

is there a way to reduce the memory usage of the internal database??  I've included the top 9 processes in a TEXT file.  I used Process Explorer to get this info.

Thank you for your responses!
4-9-09-process-explorer.txt
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Question by:mbornstein
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Expert Comment

by:MrMintanet
ID: 24106871
SQL server is designed to use as much RAM as available; I think the "Windows internal database" installed by WSUS probably limits at a max of 1Gb.

It shouldn't be a problem - Windows processes in general are designed to share memory and use it all if possible. It's almost more worrying to find a busy machine with 4Gb of RAM showing that most of it is unused; it ought to be used for things like caching!
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Author Comment

by:mbornstein
ID: 24106943
Thank you MrMintanet for your comment.  I'm still concerned about overall memory usage on this machine.  As I said, we have 4GB of Physical RAM (recognizing 3,582) and my SBS Monitoring Reports as recently as this morning is showing Memory in use of 3,796 MB!!!  I don't believe it should be running this high, do you?  
When I reboot the server (for updates, etc.), the memory usage starts off low for a while but then over the course a few days, it creeps back up over 3,500MB.  
Is there any better application that I can use to isolate the processes and attach it here for review?
Thanks so much!
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Accepted Solution

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tigermatt earned 500 total points
ID: 24106973

The Windows Internal Database is well known to play up with RAM, and use way more than it should. On an SBS system, where you have other services running too, this can cause a bit of a problem. While it shouldn't put too much of a demand on the system and "should give RAM back" as the previous poster indicated, it may be a good idea to reduce the RAM usage.

You are correct in saying the SSEE instance (Windows Internal Database) is the default database used by the WSUS service.

First of all, download and install SQL Server 2005 Management Studio Express to the server: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=C243A5AE-4BD1-4E3D-94B8-5A0F62BF7796&displaylang=en.

Fire up Management Studio, and for the server to connect to, enter \\.\pipe\mssql$microsoft##ssee\sql\query . This will connect to the instance of the Windows Internal Database on the server.

In the Object Explorer pane on the left of Management Studio, you can then right-click on \\.\pipe\mssql... and choose Properties. Select 'Memory', and from here, you can limit the maximum RAM the Windows Internal Database is permitted to use. Note that it will always push the 'maximum', and allocate a bit more than the maximum you specify.

A maximum of 512MB would probably be sufficient, since it is only running WSUS.

-Matt
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Expert Comment

by:tigermatt
ID: 24106994

Sorry, you were typing your last comment while I was typing mine, so I missed it.

The Windows Internal Database is probably one of the only services you need to worry about when it comes to RAM utilisation. Other services, such as the Exchange Store process, are designed to utilise as much RAM as possible, but will release it if another application requires it.

The Windows Internal Database process should apply the same principle, but I usually set a Maximum simply because it only runs WSUS, and doesn't need a LOT of RAM (it's not an intensive mission-critical database server we're talking about here) and ideally want a bit of RAM left in the server for usage on-demand if necessary.

-Matt
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Expert Comment

by:MrMintanet
ID: 24107097
What is your PF set to?
PF = Page File

If you are still concerned, get a second server for the SQL.  It sounds like there's just far too much going on.
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Expert Comment

by:tigermatt
ID: 24107143

If the SQL Server is just being used for WSUS and the SBS Monitoring Service, it wouldn't be viable to relocate those services off to a dedicated SQL Server. I'd only suggest that if there is a LoB application which also requires SQL Server and is utilising system resources.

WSUS and SBS Monitoring do not require an inordinate amount of RAM to function; you can safely restrict it per my last comment.

-Matt
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Author Comment

by:mbornstein
ID: 24107834
Thank you both for your comments and suggestions.  After following tigermatt's suggestions about limiting the memory usage for WSUS to 512MB, my memory usage dropped to about 3,400MB from 3,800MB.  This was most helpful.  Can I do the same thing with SBS Monitoring but limit it down to a smaller number like 50MB??
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Expert Comment

by:tigermatt
ID: 24108163

If you wished, you can. Follow the same procedure; just connect to the SBSMONITORING instance in Enterprise Manager.

-Matt
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Author Comment

by:mbornstein
ID: 24109184
tigermatt, by limiting the memory usage to 50MB, will that adversly affect anything with respect to SBSmonitoring?
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Expert Comment

by:tigermatt
ID: 24109490
I'd probably not push it that though - maybe 200MB maximum. But SBS Monitoring isn't particularly SQL Server-intensive, so it doesn't need an inordinate amount of RAM assigned.

-Matt
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