The Message Transfer Agent service continues to accept messages after the hard disk that contains the MTADATA folder fails in Exchange Server 5.5 or in Exchange Server 2003

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Article ID: 839138 - View products that this article applies to.
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SYMPTOMS

If you experience a hard disk failure on a Storage Attached Network (SAN) device that is used to store the database files for a computer that is running Microsoft Exchange Server 5.5 or Microsoft Exchange Server 2003, you may experience all the following symptoms:
  • The Microsoft Exchange Message Transfer Agent service continues to run on the Exchange Server 5.5 computer. In this scenario, the Message Transfer Agent service accepts messages even after the hard disk that contains the MTADATA folder has failed.
  • The message queues on an Exchange Server computer that sends messages to this affected Exchange Server 5.5 computer become empty.
  • Both the following events appear on the affected Exchange Server 5.5 computer that has the failed SAN hard disk:

    Event 1

    Event ID : 2181
    Event Source: MSExchangeMTA
    Event Type: Warning
    Event Category: Internal Processing
    Date: date
    Time: time
    User: N/A
    Computer: computername
    Description: An MTA database server error was encountered while securing an object. Called from MTA. Procedure 101. Database error code: 2. Object at fault: 06000060. [DB Server XFER-IN 17 38] (14)



    Event 2

    Event ID : 2127
    Event Source: MSExchangeMTA
    Event Type: Warning
    Event Category : Operating System
    Date: date
    Time: time
    User: N/A
    Computer: computername
    Description: An MTA database server error was encountered. Error accessing object attribute (AAT) on a Read/Write operation. Filename: E:\exchsrvr\mtadata\.\DB00005D.DAT. File operation: 0. Operating system error: 4096. Referenced object: WRITE (00000000 => N/A). Referenced object error 00000000. [0 DB Server XFER-IN 17] (14)

After the hard disk in the SAN fails, messages that are sent to the affected Exchange Server 5.5 computer are lost.

CAUSE

This problem occurs because the Message Transfer Agent service continues to run on the affected Exchange Server 5.5 computer. This behavior occurs even if the SAN storage device hard disk fails. Because the message transfer agent (MTA) is available for remote procedure call (RPC) communication, the sending server transfers messages to the affected Exchange Server 5.5 computer.

In this scenario, the affected Exchange Server 5.5 computer performs a delayed write operation when it receives a message. After the affected server performs the delayed write operation, it sends an acknowledgement to the sending server. The acknowledgement indicates that the affected server has received the message successfully. After receiving the acknowledgement, the sending server removes the message from the sending queue. However, when the affected server tries to physically write the message to the failed hard disk, it cannot do so. Therefore, the message is lost.

RESOLUTION

Exchange Server 2003

Service pack information

To resolve this problem, obtain the latest service pack for Microsoft Exchange Server 2003. For more information, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
836993 How to obtain the latest service packs for Exchange Server 2003

Exchange Server 5.5

Hotfix information

A supported hotfix is now available from Microsoft, but it is only intended to correct the problem that this article describes. Apply it only to systems that are experiencing this specific problem.

To resolve this problem, contact Microsoft Product Support Services to obtain the hotfix. For a complete list of Microsoft Product Support Services telephone numbers and information about support costs, visit the following Microsoft Web site:
http://support.microsoft.com/contactus/?ws=support
Note In special cases, charges that are ordinarily incurred for support calls may be canceled if a Microsoft Support Professional determines that a specific update will resolve your problem. The usual support costs will apply to additional support questions and issues that do not qualify for the specific update in question.

Prerequisites

Because of file dependencies, this hotfix requires Exchange Server 5.5 Service Pack 4. For additional information, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
191014 How to obtain the latest Exchange Server 5.5 Service Pack

Restart Requirement

On some configurations, you have to restart your computer after you apply this hotfix.The Microsoft Exchange System Attendant service and all its dependent services are automatically stopped and then restarted when you apply this hotfix.

Hotfix Replacement Information

This hotfix does not replace any other hotfixes.

File Information

The English version of this hotfix has the file attributes (or later file attributes) that are listed in the following table. The dates and times for these files are listed in coordinated universal time (UTC). When you view the file information, it is converted to local time. To find the difference between UTC and local time, use the Time Zone tab in the Date and Time tool in Control Panel.
   Date         Time   Version            Size    File name        
   --------------------------------------------------------------  
   20-Apr-2004  18:08  5.5.2658.6      1,942,800  Emsmta.exe       
   20-Apr-2004  17:45  5.5.2658.6         69,904  Ems_rid.dll      
   20-Apr-2004  17:45  5.5.2658.6         19,728  Maxapia.dll      
   20-Apr-2004  17:45  5.5.2658.6         12,048  Maxapiv1.dll     
   20-Apr-2004  18:11  5.5.2658.6        167,184  Mtacheck.exe     

STATUS

Microsoft has confirmed that this is a problem in the Microsoft products that are listed in the "Applies to" section.
This problem was first corrected in Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 Service Pack 2.

MORE INFORMATION

For additional information about how hotfix packages are named, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
817903 New naming schema for Exchange Server software update packages
For additional information, click the following article numbers to view the articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
328879 Using Exchange Server with Storage Attached Network and network-attached storage devices
317172 Exchange Server 5.5 and network-attached storage

Properties

Article ID: 839138 - Last Review: October 25, 2007 - Revision: 3.2
APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Exchange Server 5.5 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 Enterprise Edition
  • Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 Standard Edition
Keywords: 
kbexchange550presp5fix kbbug kbfix kbqfe kbhotfixserver KB839138

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