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Rebuild an exchange server 2003 database

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  • Rebuild an exchange server 2003 database

    Hello,

    A customer asked me to recover deleted messages (6 mounths ago) for some users, those users have been deleted from the AD user list because they are no longer working in the company.

    I take a look to the exchange server 2003 SP2. The server is working fine, and very lucky (i hope so and i think so ), they had the E00xxxx.LOG logfiles since january 2006. Yes, approximatively 30 GB of LOGs.

    Actually i didn't know what's the best way to rebuild the database and recover those deleted email. I give you here what i think is the best method do recover / rebuild the database:

    * At first, i think it's a good idea to recreate the deleted users by using the same name and email eddress used at the time the were in the company.
    * change the exchange options to allow me to recover deleted emails from customer outlook deleted items.
    * and then, using the ESEUTILity to reinject the E00xxx.LOG files in the actual PRIV1.EDB. (using ESEUTIL /r options).

    As i'm afraid that could damage the exchange server database, is there an other way to made the same kind of work ?? Even if i need to install a windows 2003 server as standalone one, with an exchange installed BUT not linked to the domain. And in this case, how can i recover the deleted users emails ?

    Sincerly yours,

    Thierry

  • #2
    Re: Rebuild an exchange server 2003 database

    I don't understand. You do NOT have a backup of your Exchange database? Why not? How hard is it to run NTBACKUP once a day/week?

    If you have logfiles dated almost 2 years ago, man, you'll be in deep trouble if you mess up your (currently) working DB...

    My advice - backup your DS (entire IS) ASAP. As for the deleted items from 6 months ago - leave it, you'll make a bigger mess than you're in now. Tell your boss that is he wants to recover items, any items, he should finance a decent tape and backup software.
    Cheers,

    Daniel Petri
    Microsoft Most Valuable Professional - Active Directory Directory Services
    MCSA/E, MCTS, MCITP, MCT

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Rebuild an exchange server 2003 database

      Daniel,
      Thank's for the replys but IT'S NOT my exchange server. I've got one, and the backup is done every day. Here it is a special case, I install the server 18 months ago but the customer used to managed his server by himself (a small company with almost 40 users). What he have done is not my problem, except for now !!

      Clearly, he want's to recover deleted email for employees (who have been fired) because he got some trouble with them. So my single question is just:

      How can i recover email deleted 6 months ago when i've got a fully working exchange server and the E00xxx LOGS files for the last 18 months. Does the procedure i give on the first post is OK, or am i wrong ??

      Thank's for your help.

      Regards,

      Thierry

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Rebuild an exchange server 2003 database

        I see. You made it clear now.

        Well, I personally never encountered such an issue before, so I don't know what to tell you. You don't have a copy of the original backup you made on that server, do you? If you do, you could place that backup on a new lab server (it could be on a VM) and place all the original logfiles up to the point of the desired restore point. You will then rename the last logfile as E00.log, and try to mount, perhaps after performing a recovery with ESEUTIL.

        It's a long shot, and I believe it would work only with the original DB.

        Simon? Any ideas?
        Cheers,

        Daniel Petri
        Microsoft Most Valuable Professional - Active Directory Directory Services
        MCSA/E, MCTS, MCITP, MCT

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Rebuild an exchange server 2003 database

          Daniel,

          I think this KB http://support.microsoft.com/kb/824126/en-us may help me. I found the link in another post in this forum. The description gives me the following information "... you can use a Recovery Storage Group to recover items that were deleted and purged from a user's mailbox ....

          As i'm taking some holidays, i can't be join for at least 15 days. I give inofrmation back at that time.

          regards,

          Thierry

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Rebuild an exchange server 2003 database

            The RSG is only good for a restored MBX Store. You don't have a backup, how can you restore it?
            Cheers,

            Daniel Petri
            Microsoft Most Valuable Professional - Active Directory Directory Services
            MCSA/E, MCTS, MCITP, MCT

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Rebuild an exchange server 2003 database

              You might try running eseutil with the /R switch but I've never tried it with just the old logs. You should copy the DB to another server before trying it.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Rebuild an exchange server 2003 database

                Daniel: heuuu ... mmmm... oupsss ... you're right !!
                Joe: i think about that option too.

                I'll give you the results of my tryout if it work fine, but not before 15-20 days

                Regards and thank you very much for your help.

                Thierry

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