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Exchange 2003 server running out of hard drive space

We have an Exchange 2003 server that has a 140GB hard drive and only has 12GB of free space left.  We have totaled up all the user's mailboxes and only 50GB is the total. We are losing a lot of free space each day.  We back the server up ever night so where is all the free space going?  We have minimal apps on this server.  Any assistance offered would be greatly appreciated.
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regsamp
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regsamp
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4 Solutions
 
XaelianCommented:
Can you use this tool to view what takes so much disk space? http://www.jam-software.com/treesize/index.shtml
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Manpreet SIngh KhatraSolutions Architect, Project LeadCommented:
Is all on the default C:\ drive or an additional drive ?
Are Transaction logs on the same drive ?
Can you enable "Show Hidden files" along with System files and check whats consuming the space ?

- Rancy
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Manpreet SIngh KhatraSolutions Architect, Project LeadCommented:
Hope this drive isnt storing any Backup or any other huge files on the drive ?

Also again check with the IIS and SMTP files as well :)

- Rancy
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PaulColuccioCommented:
Check the logs in c:\windows\logs\w3svc. Those are the IIS logs and are not needed. That folder tends to fill up quickly.
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regsampAuthor Commented:
All on the default C:\ drive.  Transaction logs are on the same drive.  Show Hidden Files is enabled but I am just looking around almost aimlessly.  Not other backup or files on this server that is known of.  Checking the logs in c:\windows\logs\w3svc
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Brad BouchardInformation Systems Security OfficerCommented:
Make sure your backup is truncating logs.  Most every time an Exchange server is filling up and the mailbox sizes are way less than the used space, it is because logs aren't truncated.  That being said, a better tool for seeing what space everything is taking up is:  http://windirstat.info/

Make sure backups aren't being stored on the drive and anything else that isn't necessary for Exchange.  Exchange really should only ever be dedicated for Exchange, and not a multi purpose server.
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Manpreet SIngh KhatraSolutions Architect, Project LeadCommented:
look if its Tranaction logs consuming the space you can dismount the database enable "Circular Logging" let it run for few minutes then Reverse the same to generate T Logs ... this will give you space

But the issue would be that backup isnt completeing due to some reason and thats why T logs didnt purge.

If its with IIS or SMTP logs please have the option to move them or override.

- Rancy
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regsampAuthor Commented:
c:\windows\logs\w3svc is not under windows...Confirming logs are being truncated now...
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regsampAuthor Commented:
We are backing up to tape and we use Backup Exec.  Trying to see where the option is to confirm truncating is going on.
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Manpreet SIngh KhatraSolutions Architect, Project LeadCommented:
Buddy we dont remove or delete files .... its recommended to move them to another location or backup and then remove so that in case needed you will have the data with you.

regsamp: Please do not delete anything without informing just to create some space :)

- Rancy
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regsampAuthor Commented:
Right.  I well not be deleting or moving anything until I confirm with the experts here.
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regsampAuthor Commented:
Ran TreeSize Pro and 68.4% of the C:\ Drive is taken up from Program Files and under that 92.7% is taken up under Exchsrvr\MDBDATA.
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Manpreet SIngh KhatraSolutions Architect, Project LeadCommented:
MDBDATA ideally holds the Mailbox Database and Log files
Check the Log files folder data or space consumed .... what the second or third higest space takers ?

- Rancy
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regsampAuthor Commented:
It looks like the Log folder under C:\Program Files\Exchsrvr\ Log says 7 GB.
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Manpreet SIngh KhatraSolutions Architect, Project LeadCommented:
You said DB takes 50GB and Logs 7GB - total 57GB

You ran TreeSize Pro and 68.4% - was taken by C:\MDBDATA .... which other folder in it ?

Did you check for SMTP and IIS logs location ?

- Rancy
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regsampAuthor Commented:
Where exactly do I check for SMTP and IIS logs?  There are no other files under MDBDATA besides log and edb, stm files.
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Alan HardistyCommented:
What do Application Event ID 1221's show is available White Space for each database (one for Public and one per Private Stores).

If you have GB's of space available then you can either defrag the databases to free up thr White space or if using Enterprise, move mailboxes to another store and delete the empty store.

Also, what is your mailstore retention period set to?

To find out - please read:
http://www.msexchange.org/tutorials/mf022.html
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regsampAuthor Commented:
Retention is 7 days and there are not any Application Event ID 1221s.  I don't think moving the mailboxes will help as it has to be log files or something taking up the space it would seem.
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Alan HardistyCommented:
No Event ID 1221's?  Very odd.  There should be one for each database per night if online maintenance is being performed.  Are you 100% sure?

How big are the .EDB and .STM files?
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Manpreet SIngh KhatraSolutions Architect, Project LeadCommented:
68.4% of the C:\ Drive - means approx 95GB :)
92.7% of C:\ - Exchsrvr\MDBDATA - means approx 90 GB is used by the MDBDATA folder or Exchsrvr ?

as per the details only 57GB is used by Database (.edb and .stm and log files)

Message Tracking Log File - Server Properties in ESM and on the General tab you will see "Log file directory".

- Rancy
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regsampAuthor Commented:
There are none.  The EDB is 74 GB and the STM is 11 GB.
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regsampAuthor Commented:
Rancy "Message Tracking Log File - Server Properties in ESM and on the General tab you will see "Log file directory".  Yes, this is the log file I mentioned before at 7 GB
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Alan HardistyCommented:
Okay - how far do the Application Event Log Entries go back?

With 50Gb of mail and 74Gb + 11Gb of .EDB and .STM you either have plenty of White Space or you have deleted about 35Gb of mail within the last 7 days.

If the App logs go back for about 48 hours or more, then we need to know why your online maintenance isn't running or isn't writing to the Application Event log.
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Alan HardistyCommented:
To make sure that the maintenance is configured to run properly, please have a read of this page:

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/aa995705(v=exchg.80).aspx
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regsampAuthor Commented:
The maintenance on this server is already set to run from 2 to 6 AM each day.
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Manpreet SIngh KhatraSolutions Architect, Project LeadCommented:
These logs would be like some number.log ..... whereas Transaction logs are like E00 or E01 some number.log -- which one are we speaking about.

I agree with Alan that there could be enough White space in your database .... 35GB is really HUGE but not sure if thats Dumpster or White space :)

You can check white space but to achieve that with eseutil you will have to take the database down :(

Alan: wouldnt this help just a bit and we can increase the App logs to more MB size and have the 1221

look if its Tranaction logs consuming the space you can dismount the database enable "Circular Logging" let it run for few minutes then Reverse the same to generate T Logs ... this will give you space "A good backup is very necessary ASAP"

- Rancy
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Alan HardistyCommented:
Okay - so where are your event ID 1221's then?  If maintenance is running, then it should be writing to the App Event Log and you should see the White Space recorded daily.

How far back does the App Event Log go date-wise?
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Manpreet SIngh KhatraSolutions Architect, Project LeadCommented:
regsamp: Online mentanance would exit even if there is backup or any other process running ...... You should see events 70* for starting or exiting abnormally. Can you please check this

- Rancy
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regsampAuthor Commented:
Really hoping not to take this down if it can be helped. The logs you are speaking of are the 7 GB folder.  They are not the Transaction logs.
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regsampAuthor Commented:
I apologize.  There are 1221 instances and the last one says the First Storage Group has 14125 MB for free space after online defragmentation has terminated.
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Alan HardistyCommented:
That's 14gb of space you can free up.
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regsampAuthor Commented:
How?  Where?
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Manpreet SIngh KhatraSolutions Architect, Project LeadCommented:
So the event 1221 has around 13GB white space in Database that will be recovered if we run Offline defrag.

So as you say the 7GB files are "Message Tracking Log File" and not the E00*****.log files - correct.

- Rancy
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Alan HardistyCommented:
You will need to take the store offline and run a defrag.

eseutil /d "x:\program files\exchsrvr\mdbdata\priv1.edb"

That will take about an hour to defrag 4-6Gb depending on your hardware, so there will be downtime if you want to reclaim the space.

Not to mention that you will need 110% of the database size (.EDB + .STM) in free space on the disk to defrag, or you can defrag on a different server, or to a different drive with the /t switch.
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regsampAuthor Commented:
The last event ID of 1221 says exactly "The database "First Storage Group\Mailbox Store has 14125 megabytes of free space after "online" defragmentation has terminated."  and yes the 7GB files are the log files with numbers, not the E00 log files.
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Alan HardistyCommented:
Another alternative - if possible - is to buy a larger drive, clone the existing one and then put the cloned drive back giving you more disk space.  Not sure based on your hardware if that is a possibility, but worth mentioning.
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regsampAuthor Commented:
So that other 7 GB of Message Tracking log files cannot be cleared out, correct?  The other drive would really not be an alternative given this hardware.
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Alan HardistyCommented:
Okay - rude not to mention it.  Did you see my earlier comment about the offline defrag.
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regsampAuthor Commented:
Sorry, do not mean to be rude.  Yes, I did see it.  That was going to be the solution if all other info had been given.  I was not trying to be rude or slight it.
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Alan HardistyCommented:
No problems.  So a defrag will give you 14Gb (approx) of free disk space, but at that point, then Exchange database will only grow.  Presently the 14Gb of space will be re-used as mail comes in, so unless you actually need to free up the space or don't want to run an offline defrag, then you can leave things as they are as long as the remaining space isn't eaten up.

If you do want to defrag, then you will need about 93.5Gb of free space to perform the defrag.

Do you have any other servers available?
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regsampAuthor Commented:
There are other servers available but I am thinking of holding out for awhile until it is absolutely needed as doing all that to get 14GB would only delay it for a little longer.  Might have to have a lot more PST files created in the meantime.
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Alan HardistyCommented:
Makes sense.  Just don't keep the .PST files on the server (and access them across the network).
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regsampAuthor Commented:
Yes, that is what we will currently do and will just start adding more.
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