Moving mailboxes to a database

Posted on 2014-07-29
Last Modified: 2014-09-21
In the scenario where an admin moves mailbox from one database  located on disk 1 to another mailbox database on disk 2, then the disk 2 gets filled up , I believe this would cause an issue, and the database will be automatically dismounted and users will not be able to access their mailboxes...

how do we resolve this issue

Question by:jskfan
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Assisted Solution

by:Tim Edwards
Tim Edwards earned 375 total points
ID: 40227326
Do you have the logs and database on the same disk/volume. if that is the case do a full backup to truncate the logs to free up the space and mount the database
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Assisted Solution

Amit earned 125 total points
ID: 40227451
Yes, that's right, whatever mailboxes are moved, will not work and mailbox which are still in move process will fail and move back to old db and mailbox left on old db, will still work.

As per MS best practice, you should enable the circular logging and then do the mailbox move. Now in current case, enabled the circular logging and remount the db. If required clean or move old logs and then enable circular logging, once task over, disable it again. In doing this, you need to dismount and mount the db again, then only circular logging will be enabled or disabled.

Author Comment

ID: 40227673
Well, the source from which mailboxes were moved....will still keep the original mailboxes ?

I am thinking in the analogy of Copy/ paste and Cut/paste, so moving mailboxes is like copy/paste or cut/paste?

Assuming the Destination database is on a server which is member of the DAG:
Now that the destination disk is full and the destination mailbox is not functioning. Does not the Passive copy becomes automatically Active, and users will not notice at all any disconnect ?

Well for the destination Database that caused the disk to fill up and gets automatically dismounted. Cannot we just Delete it completely and create a new one and make it Passive copy, so that it gets the replication from the one that was Passive and became Active ?...and at this point we can enable circular logging on the Active or/and Passive copy and redo the move of mailboxes ?
Though I am not sure if the move will have to be done towards the Active or Passive copy, and the circular logging whether it should be enabled on the Active or Passive copy ?
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Assisted Solution

by:Tim Edwards
Tim Edwards earned 375 total points
ID: 40261015
Sorry for the delay in getting back to you but just getting back into the swing of things since my son was born 2 weeks ago. I should have asked but version of exchange you are on? I am assuming 2010

That is correct when moving a mailbox, the mailbox will stay in its original location as it is copying to new location, the last step before the completion of the move is checking for any changes. Once that is done the move is completed. In the event of an failure the mailbox will not complete the move and continue to function in its original location

You currently would be sitting in a unhealthy state, I am not sure what would happen if you did do the delete and create another copy. I would do one of the following three options to bring the database online , the first is doing a full backup to truncate the logs, second you can enable circular logging (circular logging will not give you the ability to replay transaction logs in the event of a corruption), the third is extend the volume that the database and logs are... best practice is to have them on separate volumes.

Circular logging is done on the database level not the copy.

Author Comment

ID: 40279992
Congrats Tim !!!

in Exchange with DAG, When you move mailboxes from one database to another, do they get moved to the Active DB or to the Passive DB.

Assuming Active DB is in a different hard drive than Passive DB, so if one hard drive is full , then the other DB should still work.... and there would be no user impact...Correct ?

Accepted Solution

Tim Edwards earned 375 total points
ID: 40306618
Thank jskfan,

Sorry I know that I have not been that responsive to your questions but everything is starting to calm down.

In a DAG the easiest way to think of it is that each database is an exact copy of one another does not matter if it is passive of active, the difference between the two their is that your users that reside on that database are only making the connection to the Active Database, in the event that you fail over the current active database to the passive once exchange has turned the active database in to passive and the passive into the active the users will be connecting their.

When moving mailboxes you can only migrate users between active copies, once you have moved the user to another active database the passive copies for that database will also have a copy of that mailbox now.

Your databases would not reside on different hard drives but on different servers, for fault tolerance and resilience.


2 - Servers (Ex1 and Ex2)
3 - databases (DB1, DB2 and DB3)

This example EX1 has the active copies of each of the databases and EX2 has the passive copies, When moving a users mailbox from DB1 you will only have the option to move it to DB2 or DB3 which are both residing on EX1. When doing a move logs files will be created. Say for wanted to increase performance without adding additional resources to EX1, you could also activated DB3 on EX2, when doing this DB3 on EX1 will turn into the passive copy. Now migrating mailbox1 from DB1 to DB3, The users client will connect to EX2 to access the mailbox on DB3, while the entire time the passive copy of DB3 will be kept up to date on EX1 just incase you activate/move the active copy DB3 back to EX1 which the user will see a quick disconnect as that comes online with their mailbox.

I hope that example explains the DAG mailbox design a little simplier... I am assuming that you do not have any lagged copies in your environment as well

Author Closing Comment

ID: 40335424
Thank you Guys

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