Daily Routine Tasks


The following are examples of daily routine tasks in the Exchange environment:

Perform backups. Each day, perform necessary system and application backups to tape. Perform backup of Exchange Server 2003 information stores. The backup content and schedule should be driven by identified risks and their respective contingencies. Combine archive-to-disk methods with tape backups as necessary to back up particular data sets or logs to tape. Perform full backup at least once a week. Configure automatic notification of backup success or failure.

Verify backups. Verify that the necessary system and application backups have taken place without critical errors or failures. As part of risk analysis and contingency planning, there might be a requirement for spare servers on which the data in backups can be verified. Exchange Server 2003 database logs should have been automatically deleted after successful backup. In the event that errors or failures have occurred, take the following actions:

Consult the backup operations guide.

Review each error to understand its impact to the backup process. This is especially true if backup quality or integrity has been affected

If any portions of the backup have failed or any of the errors are significant, log a ticket with the help desk. Restart that portion of the backup immediately, or reschedule it to take place during the most appropriate time period. This minimizes performance impacts and service disruption.

If the ticket is resolved, be sure that the solution is documented in the help desk system and that the ticket is closed.

Verify directory service availability. Verify that directory replication for both Active Directory and the File Replication service (FRS) is functioning correctly (without errors), on schedule between domain controllers in all locations. Ensure that the Update Sequence Numbers (USNs) are correct on all domain controllers. (This determines whether it is functioning “correctly”). Warnings and errors can be viewed in Directory Service and FRS logs on all domain controllers. Tools such as Dcdiag.exe, Repadmin.exe, and Replmon.exe can also be used to monitor the real-time status and performance of replication.

Check available disk space. Check disk space on the servers and SAN to ensure that sufficient “free space” exists. Tools such as System Monitor, MOM or third-party monitoring tools can be used to monitor available disk space. A more detailed check on a partition or application level can be performed; use automation to ease administrative effort. A process for long-term data archiving storage should be evaluated.

Verify successful completion of database maintenance. Use Event Viewer in Windows to verify whether Exchange Server 2003 online database defragmentation was successful.

Check SMTP queue. Use Exchange System Manager to ensure that the Exchange Server 2003 SMTP queue connection state is “ready or “active” and that queues are not “blocked,” or becoming full, waiting for routing or directory lookup information. Configure Service Monitoring to automatically notify the administrator when the queue exceeds a set threshold.

Verify availability of Exchange Server 2003 stores. Use Event Viewer or MOM to verify that all mailbox and public folder stores are available and functioning normally. Set automatic notification to the Exchange administrator, if the Exchange Server 2003 store becomes unavailable.

Verify Exchange Server 2003 availability. Make sure all computers running Exchange Server in the entire Exchange organization are available. Server performance counters, CPU, disk I/O, network I/O, physical and virtual memory should not exceed the threshold. Use Exchange System Manager, Event Viewer, Computer Management Console, or MOM to configure automatic notification in case Exchange Server 2003 becomes unavailable.

Verify Exchange connectors. Make sure all Exchange Server 2003 connectors are available and functioning. Use Exchange System Manager to validate the status of the connectors.

Verify network connectivity and services. Verify that network connectivity (LAN, WAN, Internet) is functional and that network services are available (DNS, DHCP, proxy). Use Ping, Ipconfig, Tracert, System Monitor, and/or MOM to check and monitor.

Review open service tickets. Review each Exchange Server 2003 “open” help desk ticket. The ticket owner should follow up on resolving the issue within the established SLA. Document the resolution, or escalate as appropriate.

Review Windows Systems and Application logs. Check Windows Server 2003 System, Security, and Application logs on all computers running Exchange Server. On domain controllers, also check Directory Services and File Replication Service logs. Document and investigate all errors and warnings. Use automatic notification when possible to minimize administrative effort.

The following table shows event IDs that indicate problems.

Event ID Indicating Problem
Event IDStatus

2064 and 2069

Indicates DSAccess problems caused by incorrect Domain Name System (DNS) configuration.


Fragmented virtual memory. For more information about fragmented virtual memory issues, see Microsoft Knowledge Base article 325044,"How to troubleshoot virtual memory fragmentation in Exchange Server 2003 and Exchange 2000 Server,” available at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?linkid=3052&kbid=325044.


This Warning event indicates incorrect security settings on mailbox-enabled user accounts. Multiple occurrences of this event will cause performance issues on the Exchange Server computer. For more information, see the following Microsoft Knowledge Base articles:

278966, "You cannot move or log on to Exchange resource mailbox," available at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?linkid=3052&kbid=278966.

839862, "How to troubleshoot the RPC Cancel Request dialog box in Outlook 2003 or in Outlook 2002," available at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?linkid=3052&kbid=839862.


This Warning event indicates the presence of “zombie users” in Access Control Lists (ACLs) of mailboxes or public folders. "Zombie" users are unused access control entries (ACEs). Multiple occurrences of this event will cause performance issues on the Exchange Server computer. This can be logged on both mailbox and public folder servers. For more information, see Microsoft Knowledge Base article 839862, "How to troubleshoot the RPC Cancel Request dialog box in Outlook 2003 or in Outlook 2002," available at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?linkid=3052&kbid=839862.


This Error event indicates problems with conversion of distribution groups that are listed in ACLs of public folders or mailboxes to security groups. Multiple occurrences of this event will cause performance issues on the Exchange Server computer. This can be logged on both mailbox and public folder servers. For more information, see Microsoft Knowledge Base article 274046, "You cannot add a distribution group to permissions of a public folder in Exchange 2000," available at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?linkid=3052&kbid=274046.

Check all services. Check that all key system services and applications—such as DNS, Microsoft Internet Information Services (IIS), Information Store, MTA Stacks, Routing Engine, System Attendant, SMTP, and WWW—are functioning properly. Configure alerts to automatically send notification to administrators in case of service failure.

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