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Moving stm file to a newly created drive

Posted on 2013-06-01
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Currently running Exchange 2003 SP2 Ent. The edb file is 200gigs and the stm file is 150gigs and am about to run out of space on the E: drive that is holding the database store. I’ve recently added another logical drive and would like to separate the edb and stm files. Is there anything to concerned about in unmounting the store, moving the stm file to the newly created drive, change where Exchange is pointing to the stm file in System Manager, and then remounting the store. This seems like it should work but any advice/insight/concerns would be appreciated.

thanks
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Question by:Coffee101
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by:IanNoble
ID: 39213074
Best to use the Exchange System Manager to move the STM file, the steps are in the following Microsoft KB article. You can leave the DB file where it is.

How to move Exchange databases and logs in Exchange Server 2003
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/821915

Note where it advises the permission requirements for the new location and for it to be stored in a folder rather than the root of the drive.
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by:Coffee101
ID: 39213138
One more thing. After moving the stm file and remounting the store would there be any impact on performance?
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by:IanNoble
ID: 39213149
It depends on the usual things that you are no doubt already aware of:

If the underlying storage is still shared between the DB and STM file (same disks etc) or
if they are now on different physical storage,
how the storage compares from the original storage and
If the new location has other activity from other uses.

All being equal, exchange won't reduce performance if you are thinking it has to rebuild the database or STM in some way after the move.
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by:Coffee101
ID: 39213164
The DB and the STM file would be on separate physical drives on the same server. As far as how the new new storage compares to the original storage. I've added new drives and created a RAID 5 logical drive similar to what the original storage is. The new location will have no other activity; it solely exists to store the database files.
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by:IanNoble
ID: 39213173
It would be faster then not slower, as the DB and STM disk activity would not be competing.

If your DB is 200gb if not already done you could review what is the best max size per databae for your specific environment (depends on what you use for backup / restore) to optimise restore times, and for what mailboxes first, if the worst happens.
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by:Coffee101
ID: 39213191
That's what I figured, the reason I asked is because I actually had a Microsoft tech tell me that I could suffer a performance hit but he was unable to give me a good reason as to why.

thanks
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by:IanNoble
ID: 39213222
It is better to keep them together from a backup / restore point of view, but as long as the underlying storage speed is the same or better the performance is ok.

I assume you can't extend the size of the existing volume by adding more storage to it ?

Where are your logs stored?
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by:Coffee101
ID: 39213232
Unfortunately I can't extend the size of the existing volume. This log files are stored on the C drive.
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by:IanNoble
ID: 39213239
in terms of IO, the logs use the most then the EDB then the STM.

If you had performance issues or currently do then log files sharing the OS (and page file?) would be where to look, you can easily use perfomance monitor to keep an eye on disk utilisation (queue depths, latency) if you need to.
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by:Coffee101
ID: 39213413
Thanks for your helpful comments. One last question and I think I’m done. The transactional log files are currently being stored on the C drive. When I unmount the store, stop mail services, copy STM file to new drive will there be any negative effect on the log files after bringing everything back on line? Will the transaction log files be still pointing to the STM files on the old drive?
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IanNoble earned 1200 total points
ID: 39213441
As long as you use the method described in the following link you don't need to worry about that - it will demount the database for you, you will need to mount it afterwards, all the exact step by step steps are in the link, but read the notes after the steps in the linked page first.

Do not try and manually move the STM file yourself as you could get into problems, best to let Exchange system manager do it.

The log files become invalid after the database is shut down as all their data is now in the database and you will need to do a full backup after you move. They will pick up the new STM location automatically after the steps have been completed and the database is online.

"During the process of moving log files and database files, your store is temporarily dismounted. Because the store is temporarily dismounted, it is inaccessible to your users until the process is completed. Moving log files or database files invalidates all existing incremental and differential backups; therefore, make a full backup after these changes."

How to move Exchange databases and logs in Exchange Server 2003
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/821915
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