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Free up disk space on Exchange 2010

I need to free up disk space on my exchange 2010 server.  I have circular logging enable.  I have had users delete emails and archive older emails.  Can someone please explain to me why deleting and archiving is not freeing up disk space?  I also need a solution ASAP, my disk space is getting very low.
1 Solution
Zac HarrisSystems Administrator Commented:

Simply deleting and archiving emails will not free up space. Depending on your server setup deleted e-mail may be kept for compliance, and archives may be saving to the server disk as well.

I would suggest taking a look at the policies on your exchange box on how these operations are handled. Usually archiving should be saved to either the Users machine, an alternate file server, or USB drive etc... Make sure the archived mail is not being saved back to the server with the space issue.

You should also compact your data file for each user, this should be done on each users PC. Here are instructions:

Compacting Outlook Data Files

Try some of these steps and let me know if it helps at all..
Alan HardistyCo-OwnerCommented:
Space won't be freed up until the mailbox / database retention period has passed.  If you need to reduce the retention period, please have a read of the following link:


If you lower the settings to 0, you won't be able to recover any deleted items afterwards.

Restart the Information Store Service after making the changes to force the settings into play.

This will enable you to increase the white space in the database, but you won't be able to reclaim disk space without an Offline Defrag or if you create a new database and move ALL existing mailboxes to that new database, which will require more disk space.

Short answer is you need to increase the disk space somehow.  Can you move the databases to another local drive?

Ricardo MartínezInformation SecurityCommented:
There are several ways to clean up space on the disc of your server like this ones:

Clean Installation Logs
Claim Disk space from mail database (see post number 4)
Clean up transaction logs

Hope this helps you.
Red-KingIT ManagerCommented:
Exchange uses a database file with an extension of .edb
This file will only grow bigger while the database is online.
When users delete/archive email this removes them from the database but leaves 'White Space' in your .edb file. This means new emails will fill the white space within the .edb file until that is full and then the .edb file will start to grow again.

You can use this powershell command to determine the white space in your .edb file

Get-MailboxDatabase -Status | ft name,databasesize,availablenewmailboxspace -auto

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Alternatively you can look for Event ID 1221 in the Event Log.

To shrink the .edb file you need to schedule some down time.
You must dismount the database from within Exchange (its a good idea to stop the Information Store services too).
You then need to do an offline defrag of the .edb file.

You do this by running 'eseutil.exe' (which is installed with Exchange, its in the program folder somewhere)

eseutil.exe /d c:\path\myExchDB.edb

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A caution though, you need to have enough space to hold the existing .edb file plus the space required to hold the .edb after the offline defrag. This is because the eseutil.exe simply creates a new .edb, copies all the content of your current .edb into it, then deletes the original and gives the new .edb the same name as the original .edb had.

I believe you can use a '/t' switch with the eseutil command to create the new .edb file in a different storage location i.e. a network share.
Look at the help for 'eseutil.exe' to see what your options are.

Gareth GudgerCommented:
It sounds like this is one server with all roles. Lots of great suggestions already posted here. But another thing to check is if you have IIS logging enabled. That can slowly chew up space with everything EWS connection. Jump into IIS, check the Default Website >> Logging. Click the Disable link in the Action Pane.

More info

If not needed you can delete the contents of
%systemdrive%\inetpub\logs]Log Files\W3SVC1\
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