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Message tracking logs - mailbox server being decomm - Exchange 2013

Posted on 2016-10-18
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Last Modified: 2016-11-01
Currently got 4 mailbox servers - call them A, B, C, and D.

All mailbox databases have been moved off A. All transport rules have been disabled on A,.
However, if you run message tracking query, obviously, there are log files on A pertaining to previous emails processed by A.

We now need to decommision server A. Problem is if we do this then surely we're losing all the message tracking logs off A? Admitedly, we're not getting any new messages processed by A but if we need to search tracking logs we're losing info if we turn off A.

Is there any way around this? Copying logs to one of the remainign servers etc?
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Question by:paulfoel
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Niten Kumar earned 500 total points
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The "Search Message Tracking Logs" section from the documentation states:

You can't copy the message tracking log files from another Exchange server and then search them by using the Get-MessageTrackingLog cmdlet. Also, if you manually save an existing message tracking log file, the change in the file's date-time stamp breaks the query logic that Exchange uses to search the message tracking logs.

But as the logs are plain text files in a simplistic structure you would be able to rename the log files to integrate them with the existing ones on a different server. The file name is something along MSTRKyyymmdd-n.log where n is an increment with a maximum of 9999. If you have not used a copy method which would pertain the last write access time stamp, you probably would want to set the copied files' last write timestamps e.g. using the LastWriteTime property of the FileInfo object accordingly.

Events obviously would not be in a chronological order - this might impact searchability by time (not sure if it really is going to be the case). I simply would try it out with a couple of manually renamed log files and script a renaming function for the rest, if it works out.

You also could pull the data using Get-MessageTrackingLog and dump it to a file using Export-Clixml so you could reload it later and filter on the results using Powershell functions, if needed. This however would require you to use a different function to load the object and deprive you of Get-MessageTrackingLog-specific filters.
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by:paulfoel
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Thanks. I'd thought of these things. Perhaps exporting the logs is the easiest option allowing for the drwabacks with this method. After all, in three months or so we wont need to worry any more.
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