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SBS2008 Exchange 2007 won't receive email

Posted on 2016-09-15
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Last Modified: 2016-09-16
All was OK until yesterday lunch when incoming email stopped. A server reboot fixed it for a while but within about 6 hours it stopped again and hasn't worked since. Email will send and internal email flows OK but external incoming email doesn't arrive. Services are running and I can ping the exchange server by name. Port 25 is open and points to the server.
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Question by:ClintonK
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Expert Comment

by:Akhater
ID: 41800096
Please go to https://www.testconnectivity.microsoft.com/ and run the "Inbound SMTP Email" test see what it gives you
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ScottCha earned 500 total points
ID: 41800422
Check drive space.  It doesn't sound like a configuration issue, it sounds like backpressure.  Basically, if there isn't enough drive space Exchange will refuse external emails in order to protect the drive from filling up and crashing the server.

http://exchangeserverpro.com/exchange-transport-server-back-pressure/

https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb201658(v=exchg.160).aspx

The connectivity analyzer won't help in this case.
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Author Comment

by:ClintonK
ID: 41800470
All seems to have burst back into life now and emails are arriving. They started to come in about 3 hours ago - I haven't made any changes since posting this question so it seems to have sorted itself out somehow.
The server has 400Gb HDD and 18Gb free. Not a huge amount free but enough not to stop Exchange I would have thought?
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Expert Comment

by:Akhater
ID: 41800477
Everything above 4gb should be ok by default but it also could be the ram

Read this it will help you track if it is indeed back pressure
  http://m.msexchange.org/articles-tutorials/exchange-server-2007/management-administration/understanding-back-pressure-feature-exchange-server-2007.html
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Expert Comment

by:Akhater
ID: 41800483
@ScottCha off course the connectivity analyser would help, it would show "not enough system resources"
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Expert Comment

by:ScottCha
ID: 41800487
Ok.  I stand corrected. Thank you.

I had a server the other day get backpressures with just 12 GB free.
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Author Comment

by:ClintonK
ID: 41800493
I've just run the connectivity tester and all is good (green ticks), but I suppose it would be now the emails are flowing. I do recall looking at the free disc space earlier and there was 10Gb free so where the additional 8Gb came from I don't know. It does sound likely that it's the back pressure thing.
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Expert Comment

by:Akhater
ID: 41800496
yes my guess is that Scott is right about BackPressure, please check the event log you can easily know that.

@Scott the correct backpressure formula is

Free space percentage = (disk size – 500MB) / disk size

so for a 400 GB disk that would be 98% so backpressure will kick in when free space is less than 8GB
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Expert Comment

by:ScottCha
ID: 41800556
Also, you are going to want to start looking into migrating off of Exchange 2007.  Support for Ex2k7 is rapidly coming to an end.

You can't even do a one-step migration from 2007 to 2016.  You'd have to do a two step sing 2010 or 2013 in the middle.
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Author Comment

by:ClintonK
ID: 41800563
Not sure what the plan is for the future. We may move Exchange offsite or look into the possibility of an onsite Linux solution like Zentyal
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Author Closing Comment

by:ClintonK
ID: 41802115
Freeing up space appears to have cured the problem. Mail has been flowing OK today now there is 20Gb free. I will work to make more space available to avoid a repeat of the problem.
Thanks chaps.
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Expert Comment

by:ScottCha
ID: 41802248
Glad I could help.
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