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Exchange server 2010 unavailable until network connection is repaired

Posted on 2012-09-11
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Last Modified: 2013-03-15
we have recently installed an Exchange 2010 server on a 2008 R2 server at a customers site.  Since installation, some users (mostly XP and Office 2K3 & 2k7) have issues first thing in the morning where Outlook reports that the server is unavailable.  If you repair the network connection Outlook then re-connects and works perfectly for the rest of the day.  The same server is also being used for DNS and DHCP although there is nothing in the event log to suggest that these services are having issues.  There's also nothing in the event log around 9:00am that would suggest why Exchange all of a sudden starts to work and allow Outlook connections without the need for a network repair around this time.  I've checked the scheduled tasks and again there is nothing for around this time.
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Question by:outsourced-it
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11 Comments
 
LVL 37

Expert Comment

by:Neil Russell
ID: 38386451
When you repair WHAT network connection? On the client or on the server?
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LVL 12

Expert Comment

by:xmlmagician
ID: 38386484
i assume that you mean network repair on the local pc,

is everything else working okay on the PCs (internet, mapped networked drives etc) or you have other issues with them that are resolved when you repair the connection?

are the PCs left on overnight or shut-down and powered back up in the morning?
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Expert Comment

by:ics45
ID: 38386515
Have you tried installed all of the patches for both Exchange 2010 and Windows Server 2008 R2 there are lots!?
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Expert Comment

by:ics45
ID: 38386533
I would recommend trying to OWA at the time the Exchange server supposedly goes offline, see if you can log into it.
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Author Comment

by:outsourced-it
ID: 38386705
Yes, it is the clients network connection I am repairing. All servers totally patched up to date (just double checked this as well). Will check OWA next time this happens. PC's work perfectly until Outlook can't connect, repair the network connection and all works fine again.
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Expert Comment

by:ics45
ID: 38386708
Is a secure certificate (probably a UCC one) installed and correctly functioning I wonder?
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LVL 37

Expert Comment

by:Neil Russell
ID: 38386913
Ok what you dont mention is does everything else work when this happens?
Can the affected machines browse the network? Access network shares? Browse the internet? PING the exchange server?
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LVL 28

Expert Comment

by:asavener
ID: 38387350
I suspect that what's happening is that by repairing the network connection, you clear the DNS cache on the client, and it can then resolve the server by name.

Instead of repairing the network connection, try running "ipconfig /flushdns".

If that works, then what's happening is that the client is caching the "could not resolve the server name" response, and until that response times out of the cache the client will not actually send a DNS query again for that server name.

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/318803

The length of time for which a positive or negative response is cached depends on the values of entries in the following registry key:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\DNSCache\Parameters
The TTL for positive responses is the lesser of the following values:

    The number of seconds specified in the query response the resolver received
    The value of the
    MaxCacheTtl
    registry setting.


Notes

    The default TTL for positive responses is 86,400 seconds (1 day).
    The TTL for negative responses is the number of seconds specified in the
    MaxNegativeCacheTtl
    registry setting.
    The default TTL for negative responses is 900 seconds (15 minutes).

If you do not want negative responses to be cached, set the
MaxNegativeCacheTtl
registry setting to 0.
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Expert Comment

by:xmlmagician
ID: 38388089
asavener +1 nailed it if that is the problem
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by:piyushranusri
ID: 38390223
press left hand ctrl and right click on outlook icon on task bar, here you will find connection status. check this
and when client repair the connection before that ping and nslookup to DC and exchange.

for testing purpose install 2010 office one client and check the status
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Accepted Solution

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outsourced-it earned 0 total points
ID: 38408612
I've no had the opportunity to see this actually happen again on a client PC as we are not on-site everyday and people have just ben repairing their network connection to get it to work rather than call us.  OWA does work on a machine that will not connect using Outlook and running an IPConfig /FlushDNS makes no difference.  The only thing that seems to fix the problem for that day is carrying out a repair on the local PC's network connection.  We have multiple versions of Office in use and they all do the same thing.  There is only one Windows 7 PC in use on this network though and this doesn't ever suffer from this problem?
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