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Repaired Exchange 2007 Transaction logs, now mail in OWA is saying "does not exist" when you try to forward

On friday we had an issue with our server that dismounted our Mailbox database and required me to use eseutil to repair it and ultimately had to move the log files to another directory to get it to mount. After the 6 hour wait and getting us back up, I noticed some emails in mailboxes were showing as "does not exist" when you try to access them. That much I expected. What is odd is some users can access their mail, but when they try to forward an email it gives them the notification that it does not exist...despite the fact that they can read/reply to it. Any ideas?
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LlewellynIT
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LlewellynIT
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MesthaCommented:
If the database has been repaired, it should be replaced as soon as possible. A repaired database should not be left in production.
Therefore I would suggest that you create a new mailbox database and move the content to it using the Move Mailbox wizard. This may mean some content is lost, but that cannot be helped.
Once the content has been moved and you are left with the system mailboxes, drop the original store and immediately restart the information store service.

Behaviour of a repaired database will never be normal.

Simon.
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LlewellynITAuthor Commented:
Are you familiar with the amount of time required to do this process? How long will our mailbox store have to be down, if at all? Our database is ~70GB. We have Postini email service so our email will queue up if our server is down - would a good approach be to unmount our mailbox store before I begin so that any mail will queue up and be delivered once I finish the process with the new database?

You mentioned moving the content, and leaving the system mailboxes? So just move all of my user/admin mailboxes and leave which ones specifically? (sounds like a step I don't want to mess up)
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MesthaCommented:
You move everything. The only ones you leave behind are the ones that you cannot move.
How long it takes is hard to say. It depends on the speed of the storage. There is no downtime for the server, because it is moving each mailbox in turn. Therefore a small subnet of the users will be unable to access their mailbox while it moves. Email for everyone else will flow.

You can't unmount the database because for the process to run it needs to be online.

Simon.
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LlewellynITAuthor Commented:
Thanks for the guidance, I'll start this process tonight. Working on a dual quad core Xeon with 16 GB of ram so if anything holds it up I doubt it's the hardware. From what I understand I can move groups of people at a time, and can do this over a period of time. Once all the mailboxes have moved, I can technically leave the old storage grouping running without any errors correct? (want to make sure the new storage group / mailboxes work before eradicating the previous). Again thank you for your assistance here, I've asked around and you come highly recommended. :)
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LlewellynITAuthor Commented:
Question, is there any benefit to creating multiple mailbox databases? Or is there a way I can create a mirrored database so that if the primary one was corrupt, I could jump over to the other and use it for no downtime? Basically my question is - how do businesses avoid downtime with a corrupt database - is it possible easily or economically feasible for a company of 80 employees?
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MesthaCommented:
RAM and Processor will not make much of a difference. It is only Storage that can cause things to be slow or not.

Corrupt databases are not that common. The most common cause is bad hardware.
While it is possible with Exchange 2007 to use either LCR on the same server or SCR to a second server, which can have delayed replication, database corruption could occur over time and you wouldn't know about it.

The simple way to avoid corruption is high quality hardware, with AV products configured not to scan Exchange and the server being dedicated to Exchange.

If you have the space to keep the old storage group and database running,t hen you can. Remember it doesn't shrink - so it will stay the same size as it is now.

Simon.
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LlewellynITAuthor Commented:
The server suffered a hard shutdown (power outage and batteries were malfunctioning) and when I booted it back up, it had this problem of the database not being able to mount. After repairing that I came to this step that I am at now.

The E00.log file was not allowing me to move it to another directory, so I ran a chkdsk and it corrected some errors it found. After that I was able to move the old log file and mount the database. Makes sense if there was a sector error in that log file that was damaged in the shutdown.

So AV products can potentially corrupt the database? Also, what you're saying is I can use LCR but the database could become corrupt and therefore so could the LCR and I'd have a useless replication?

The server currently has WSS 3.0 installed on it as well. From what you're saying that is not the optimal installation setup. Maybe I should look at virtualization to dedicate a virtual server to each application?

I've successfully been able to move over half the mailboxes, with the rest pending - no errors everything is going smooth. I'll report tomorrow if the "oddities" such as mail in OWA not being accessible, and when people move calendar items they automatically moved back after 3 seconds have gone. Thanks for the help Simon!

-Dan
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MesthaCommented:
AV products can corrupt the database - particularly Symantec AV. You need to ensure that any file level AV is not scanning the Exchange directories.

The *CR replication technologies use the logs, therefore if the database is occurring at the physical level, rather than content level, then it shouldn't transfer to the replica.

WSS on Exchange is quite common. It isn't something I tend to do personally, but SBS for example works in that way. Where the problems start is with Exchange being asked to do other things - file sharing, domain controller etc.

Simon.
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LlewellynITAuthor Commented:
Thanks for the heads up on AV scanning, I have Trend Micro excluding the Exchange folders now. Could the scanning affect Sharepoint's database similarly and should I exclude that folder as well?

I'm going to experiment with Exchange's built-in replication, figure it couldn't hurt since we have the storage space. The potential to be able to avert last week's 7 hour database repair process would be phenomenal.

Currently the server is dedicated to only WSS and Exchange 2k7, mostly because it is the most powerful in our organization and these are our two most heavily used applications. Good to know that I should keep it dedicated to those two functions at most.

Looks like our issues are resolved, calendar items are moving and updating, and emails show up in OWA now. Thanks for your assistance and the wealth of information Simon! You're the man!
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LlewellynITAuthor Commented:
Simon knows his stuff! EE should be proud to have him available to help their members.
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LlewellynITAuthor Commented:
Mestha, our BES server stopped sending email to Blackberry's after the new mailbox database creation. I am checking BESADmin permissions, re-adding my users, and rebooting the server. Any other ideas to try?
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MesthaCommented:
The permissions are almost certainly incorrect. Most of the instructions I see for BES involve permissions at the database level, so those would have to be reset. Don't forget that Exchange caches permissions, so you either have to wait two hours or you will need to restart the information store service for them to take effect.

Simon.
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