MS Exchange Server has two fundamental components, i.e., Information store and the JET database engine. The Information store consists of two databases, namely 'Priv.edb' and 'Pub.edb'. The private information store database (Priv.edb) is responsible for managing user mailboxes, whereas the public information store (Pub.edb) is used for public folders. The JET database engine performs disk catching and is also responsible for maintaining the disk structure for Exchange Server.

What Makes EDB Corrupt?

Most of the time the Information Store gets corrupt, rendering all data in the EDB file inaccessible. This corruption may occur as a result of bad sectors on the hard drive, causing the transaction logs to be incorrectly read by the server, and thus leading to incorrect updates.

You may also encounter this behavior as a result of abnormal termination of the Information Store due to a dirty Exchange Server shutdown.

When you try to mount 'Priv.edb' to Exchange Server after a dirty shutdown, you come across the following error message:

"database was not shutdown cleanly (dirty shutdown)"

The error indicates that the database is not cleanly detached form the transaction log stream. As a result, the database files are not properly updated. The next time you start the database, Exchange Server searches the log files for missing data. If the log files are missing, the database cannot be mounted and requires you to repair the Exchange server.

Which Utilities to be Used?

'ESEUTIL' Utility

Eseutil is a command-line utility that can be used to defragment an Exchange database offline, verify the database integrity, and repair a damaged database. The utility can be found in the \EXCHSRVR\BIN directory.

It can effectively fix all integrity issues related to the Information Store and the directory. As the BIN directory is not included in the system path, you need to open this utility in the BIN directory itself or add '\EXCHSRVR\BIN' to the system path.

'ISINTEG' Utility

The 'Isinteg' utility identifies the Exchange database as an ESE database and verifies the database tables, their records, and indexes. The utility records all information about the recovery process to the application log in the Event Viewer.

You can initially try to restart the Exchange Server for performing a soft recovery. If this fails, follow the steps to perform Exchange server repair using these two utilities:

  • Run this command form the BIN folder to do a hard repair of the database:
  • "ESEUTIL /P database_filename.edb"
  • Now try deleting the log and chk files.
  • Use "eseutil /d database_filename.edb" command to defrag the database.
  • Run this form the same BIN folder:
  • "eseutil /d database_filename.edb"
  • Try to mount the stores
Powerful Application to Repair Corrupt EDB File

Stellar Repair for Exchange is a competent tool that performs EDB repair and restores users' mailboxes using safe and highly reliable algorithms to scan the corrupt files. The Exchange repair software can efficiently restore your precious emails, contacts, tasks, attachments, calendar items, and other mailbox items without causing any further damage to the original EDB file. This Exchange EDB repair tool also works with Unicode-formatted EDB files and allows selective recovery of user mailboxes. Furthermore, the software supports MS Exchange Server 2019, 2016, 2013, 2010, 2007, 2003, 2000, and 5.5.

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