Clearing Exchange 2007 Log files

RDG72
RDG72 used Ask the Experts™
on
I am using CA ArcServe with the Exchange Agent to backup my Exchange server 2007.  I am running out of space on the email server and noticed that the log files (with naming convention E00000000A2.log) go back to August when we upgraded.  I have had successful backups since August, but the log files are not being cleared.  I don't want to simply delete these log files, but I can't trust ArcServe to delete them for me.  

Any suggestions?
Comment
Watch Question

Do more with

Expert Office
EXPERT OFFICE® is a registered trademark of EXPERTS EXCHANGE®
Awarded 2009
Top Expert 2010
Commented:
You ned to be running a FULL exchange aware backup of the information store. differential or incrememntals will not flush the logs.


If that doesn't work use Windows Backup to perform a backup of the store and this will flush the logs.
Actually, incrementals do flush the logs if configured to do so.

I don't think there is anything wrong with letting the backup software delete the logfiles. Technically it's Exchange doing this in the background. So as stated in the previous post, if you run a Full backup every once in a while that is configured to flush the logs you will be fine.

Any other method will be more complicated. You could delete logs that are older than X (to be defined to your preference), but then you must be sure that you did indeed get good backups. If you let ArcServe do it the logs are only flushed after successful backups, so in my opinon this is your best bet.
Awarded 2009
Top Expert 2010

Commented:
ONLY FULL backups delete the log files any other method will not flush the logs.
Success in ‘20 With a Profitable Pricing Strategy

Do you wonder if your IT business is truly profitable or if you should raise your prices? Learn how to calculate your overhead burden using our free interactive tool and use it to determine the right price for your IT services. Start calculating Now!

Nope, not necessarily. It really depends on your software in settings. In fact often the major difference between full and differential is the fact the differentials do NOT flush the logs while incrementals CAN flush the logs. E.g.:

http://seer.entsupport.symantec.com/docs/299857.htm:
Incremental - Logs (flush committed logs). Select this method to back up all of the transaction logs that have been created or modified since the last full or incremental backup, and then delete the transaction logs that have been committed to the database.

Awarded 2009
Top Expert 2010

Commented:
They may well do it but it's not a supported method!
Why wouldn't it be - in case of a restore it's just about putting the log files back on disk, and it really doesn't matter at which point they got deleted. Since all logs are already committed to the DB Exchange will not care about them unless you do a restore. Anyway, I have done this over a decade with several Exchange versions and different backup software, and it works perfectly fine. Now if this is the best way of doing this is a whole different story, but that depends.

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/aa998379(EXCHG.65).aspx
From incremental backup section

6.Log files that no database in the storage group needs to roll forward are truncated (deleted from the disk).

Awarded 2009
Top Expert 2010

Commented:
We will just have to agree to disagree!
I have been working with exchange for 14 years and I have only ever performed FULL backups and would not recommend anything less!

But then I have been on the receiving end of all too many exchange recoverys where the backup has been essential in getting the system back up and running
As I said, if this is the best way of doing it is a whole different story. Saying it is not supported or won't work is not true though, and this is a fact.
Full backups do have their disadvantages. With incrementals etc. you are able to go back to specific points in time and not only to the time of the backup, an ability that your full backup does not give you. So depending on the business needs running only FULL backups may not be sufficient.
Awarded 2009
Top Expert 2010

Commented:
Again I disagree from the documentation I have always seen full backups are the only supported method of clearing the logs.

Brick level/item level backups are not supported and therefore as far as exchange is concerned restoring a FULL backup to a RSG will give you your recovery.

Author

Commented:
Thanks to both of you for your ideas.  I do have CA set to do a Full Backup every quarter.  This is supposed to flush the logs, but they obviously are not being flushed.  I will try a Windows Backup and see how that works.
Every quarter?
You will want to do that at the very least once a week, and make sure it is set to flush the logs. If it doesn't check the event logs to see if you get good backups at all -
Awarded 2009
Top Expert 2010

Commented:
Every QUARTER????
Your company doesn't rely on email very much then??

That is just madness!!!

I take full backups of ALL my exchange installs EVERY DAY

Author

Commented:
We have our Exchange Server replicated offsite and backed up online.  The tapes are archival purposes.  If the Windows Backup works, I will set that for weekly so I can flush the log files.
Awarded 2009
Top Expert 2010

Commented:
"I appreciate the feedback, but using the question as an arena for debating backup strategies between the experts did not seem to add to the value of the solution."

Apologies if you felt the discussion was inapropriate, however that did not warrant a C grade as the solution was provided in my first post.
Especially since the discussion was directly related to the question...

Author

Commented:
Feel free to change the grade to an A

Author

Commented:
I appreciate the feedback, but using the question as an arena for debating backup strategies between the experts did not seem to add to the value of the solution.

Do more with

Expert Office
Submit tech questions to Ask the Experts™ at any time to receive solutions, advice, and new ideas from leading industry professionals.

Start 7-Day Free Trial