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Exchange is not backing up and the log files are filling up

Posted on 2010-09-02
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Last Modified: 2012-08-14
I am having trouble completing my backup.  I am using ntbackup, which runs on schedule and had been running just fine.  But it has now stopped working I get "The device reported an error on a request to write data to media"  followed by  "an inconsistency was encountered in the requested backup file".  Now the drive is totally full of transaction logs and my mail has stopped.  I tried a different disk, and got the same result.  After searching through the solutions I found that there is a 36GB limitation for saving backups D2D.  The problem is that the data is now so huge that I can't back it up, therefore can't clear out the log files, therefore the drive stays full.  And of course any thing I try takes forever before it eventually fails.  I have Exchange Server 2007 on Windows Server 2003 Standard x64.  I need some help.  I am not an expert at Exchange administration, but I need to get this resolved ASAP.  Thanks everyone.
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Question by:aiasslug
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Expert Comment

by:uescomp
ID: 33590546
i would check your hard drives, either the backup drive or on the server itself, inconsistency usually springs when data is being pulled from a bad sector.  I would double check with diagnostics on the drives
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Wonko_the_Sane earned 500 total points
ID: 33590747
You can move (DO NOT DELETE THEM UNLESS YOU ARE SURE) some of your  older logfiles to a different volume and switch Exchange to circular logging for the time being:
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb331968(EXCHG.80).aspx

Then mount your Exchange DBs.

This way only a few logs will be kept. This is only a temporary workaround, I wouldn't leave it like that. But it will give you time to figure out the backup
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Author Comment

by:aiasslug
ID: 33591021
@uescomp - I tried different backup locations to eliminate the target drive as the problem.  First I went to a network mapped drive, then I physically added an external drive, yet got same result.  Are you saying there could be a possible bad sector from where the IS is stored, not where the data is being written to?

@Wonko - I will attempt this this evening if I cannot resolve it any other way.  What is the downside of circular logging?
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Expert Comment

by:Wonko_the_Sane
ID: 33591227
If you have to recover a database it is more likely that you will have to deal with data loss.

If circular logging is active you can only go back to the time of your last backup, any changes since will be lost (e.g. new emails). If it is not active and you still have all your log files since your last backup you can usually go back to the point in time when your server crashed.
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Author Closing Comment

by:aiasslug
ID: 33595643
Grade of B because it did not fully solve my problem, but it did give me a way to deal with my problem.
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