Outlook locking up when server avg. disk queue length spike to 500, 800
Posted on 2011-10-13
I just inherited a small network (10 days ago) and I am having lock up issues with outlook on the terminal server, everyone in the main office is working fine. It’s a small environment with 2 server, 2003 R2 with Exchange 2003, the other 2008 terminal server. The local workstations are a mixture of XP, WIN7, all with Office 2007 all OS professional. 20 users, 6-8 remote using the terminal sever.
So far I tracked the lock ups to when the Avg. Disk Queue Length is above 150, and the reason why the desktop users are not experiencing the problem is because they have outlook in cache mode. Take them out and they will experience the same problem as the terminal users.
Using perfmon and Process Explorer, I can see the most active process is the store.exe and when outlook switches to not responding/get server not responding the Avg. Disk Queue from perfmon is above 500, reports upward to 800
The disk spikes can last for anywhere from 15 seconds up to 2 minutes, effectively locking outlook and even the console of the server during the event. I am seeing a few ftdisk warnings in the event viewer, 2 from a few days ago, 12 from a few weeks ago, but nothing during the event. It’s happening ever 40 to 70 minutes on the server.
My question, what’s the best method to tell what Exchange process is causing the IO spike or am I dealing with a damaged store. This just the beginning of a hardware failure? The firmware is out date and I plan on updating disk/controller/system board this weekend.
The server is an older Dell SC1430, with a simple SATA RAID1. No errors reported from the controller, but it is listing a number of firmware initializations information notifications for some reason. I don’t recall rebooting the server 17 times in the last few days, but the card is listing initilaizations occuring.
The nightly Exchange defrag are running and listed as completing successfully in the event viewer.