The Microsoft Exchange Information Store was listed as "started". I stopped it and restarted it, which resolved the problem. To do so, you can take the following steps:
The problem recurred a few days later. Restarting the Microsoft Exchange Information Store again resolved the problem. When I looked in the system's Application Event Log (accessible by Start, Administrative Tools, then Event Viewer), I saw the following entry:
Event Type: Error Event Source: MSExchangeIS Mailbox Store Event Category: General Event ID: 9689 Date: 10/23/2006 Time: 5:00:02 AM User: N/A Computer: S Description: Exchange store 'First Storage Group\Mailbox Store (S)': The logical size of this database (the logical size equals the physical size of the .edb file and the .stm file minus the logical free space in each) is 18 GB. This database size has exceeded the size limit of 18 GB. If the logical size of this database is not reduced to less than the maximum size limit, this database will be dismounted the next time a database size check is performed. For more information, click http://www.microsoft.com/contentredirect.asp.
I then remembered that Exchange has an 18 GB limit on the maximum size of the database that holds mail for Exchange users. This seems a very small size for a server that will handle multiple users and makes me wonder what the Microsoft Exchange developers were thinking when developing a email product to be deployed in an enterprise environment to think 18 GB would be adequate. But then Outlook itself has had a 2 GB limit for personal storage files, i.e. .pst files. I've had two users reach that 2 GB size at which point their PST files became corrupted.
A Microsoft TechNet article titled Database Size Limit Configuration and Management states that "By default, the database size check happens at 05:00 (5:00 A.M.) every day." That matches the time for the application event log entry on October 23, which is included above. Users found that Outlook was indicating it was disconnected when they arrived for work that morning. When I went to View, selected Filter and filtered the application log entries to only those with event id 9689, I found two, one on October 20 ant 5:00 A.M. and the other at the same time on October 23, which matched the two reports from users, though they did not see the problem until they came in a few hours later.
When I checked the priv1.edb file that is the file for the Exchange Information Store, I found it was 17.6 GB (18,903,277,568 bytes) after I restarted it. I emptied the deleted items folders for 3 users, two of whom had thousands of messages in their deleted items folders, but that did not seem to significantly reduce the size of the information store file.
Database Size Limit Configuration and Management article on
Microsoft TechNet has
instructions on how to modify the registry to increase the database size as
does the article
Explaining the Database size limit changes in Exchange 2003 Service Pack 2
by Henrik Walther. Microsoft's Help and Support website also has an
Online Defragmentation Does Not Reduce Size of .edb Files
that explains how to use the
eseutil command to defragment the
edb file and reduce its size
Created: Tuesday October 24, 2006