Questions

Exchange not sending/receiving emails

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Exchange not sending/receiving emails

itjaws
Hi,

Setup:
- 2003 Exchange server on 2003 Windows Server
- Domain controller, active directory and ISA all on same machine
- Simple straight forward setup and configuration
- Exchange does not receive emails directly by MX Record but picks them up by POP3

Problem:
- Suddenly, after power outage, exchange stopped sending/receiving emails, even locally within the local domain
- Outdated Outlook clients mailboxes are updated until the emails sent/received until the outage
- Emails are sent from Outlook with no error, but they stay in the queue (can be tracked)
- In the Monitor, the "SMTP Queues Growth" is more than 1000 minutes
- When Outlook tries to receive emails it gives error 0x80004005
- In the Event Viewer, Applications, I fixed an error related to offline address book but there are still warnings/errors MSExchangeSA ID 9116 and 9331, and MSExchangeIS 9548.
- In the Message Tracking Center, the last point of a message is "Message delivered to exchange-collector@[domain]"

Thanks
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    AruJammer

    Check if the necessary exchange services are started

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    itjaws

    Sure, they are started, also the SMTP service.

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    BigRed_32399

    With the power outage you might have a bad message trapped in midstream on the smtp queue. The queue is on disk. Use Exchange System Manager and navigate down the Exchange->Admin Groups->First Admin Group->Servers->[your server name here]->Protocols->SMTP and you should see Default SMTP Virtual Server. Right click to see properties. Tab to Messages and the Queue Directory is shown. Go to your exchange server and see if there are messages there. If so, then smtp is hung on a message. Stop the smtp service and you can try deleting the oldest message. Restart the smtp service to see if it starts processing messages.

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    itjaws

    Thanks. There are no messages in that queue folder. And there are also no messages in the "Pickup" folder where the 3rd part POP3 software is saying it's putting the e-mails it downloads from an external mail server.
    However, in the "Failed Message Retry Queue" within the Exchange System Manager it shows 1 "Queued" message, 1000B size, dated 03.01.1601, and I can't freeze/unfreeze/delete it. But it is there since a long time while the system was still working.

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    BigRed_32399

    You can use telnet to connect to port 25 of your exchange smtp virtual server to make sure it is up.
    from command prompt:
    Telnet [smtp ip address goes here] 25 and press enter.
    You should see the smtp response like this:
    220 MY-Mail-Server Microsoft ESMTP MAIL Service, Version: 6.0.3
    790.3959 ready at Thu, 30 Jul 2009 08:43:05 -0400
    You can then key in the HELO command string
    HELO mydomain.com and press return
    you should get a Hello back.
    you can continue the sequence of commands and actually send a message through to your mailbox if all is working on exchange.
    Use Google to lookup SMTP command line with TELNET.
    I also use bmail, a command line smtp mailer utility from beyondlogic.org to test with.

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    0 Votes
    samson99tx

    There are 9 different services that are tied to Exchange Server.
    For POP3, you need IMAP4, Information Store, Exchange Management, POP3, and System Attendant. If these services are not "STARTED" then exchange server will not deliver email.

    Sometimes, after a power 'blink', you will have to close all of them, and then restart them, even when it shows "started. Sometimes they are in a "hang up state". As a good practice, always reboot after a power failure.
    Always check all of your services.

    Sometimes, an exploit will cause the services to end, or hang up. In those cases, STOP ALL of the exchange services, and then RESTART them.
    If that makes your system unresponsive, then you will need to reboot.

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    0 Votes
    itjaws

    Thanks. I restarted all services and of course restarted the server few times after few adjustments trying to fix the problem. Anyway, I think I only restarted about 5 services, will check the remaining ones if you are saying 9. However, IMAP was always stopped cause I use a 3rd party software to download e-mails from external mailboxes by POP3.

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    0 Votes
    itjaws

    Basically solved, uninstalled a 3rd party security software. E-mails are flowing again internally and externally, but still somehow some e-mails are not sent out, if I track them it says at the end "Message transferred to ******************* through SMTP" and gives an error coz ******** is not found in the directory. And the SMTP Queues Growth is still around 1500 minutes.

  • +
    0 Votes
    AruJammer

    Check if the necessary exchange services are started

    +
    0 Votes
    itjaws

    Sure, they are started, also the SMTP service.

    +
    0 Votes
    BigRed_32399

    With the power outage you might have a bad message trapped in midstream on the smtp queue. The queue is on disk. Use Exchange System Manager and navigate down the Exchange->Admin Groups->First Admin Group->Servers->[your server name here]->Protocols->SMTP and you should see Default SMTP Virtual Server. Right click to see properties. Tab to Messages and the Queue Directory is shown. Go to your exchange server and see if there are messages there. If so, then smtp is hung on a message. Stop the smtp service and you can try deleting the oldest message. Restart the smtp service to see if it starts processing messages.

    +
    0 Votes
    itjaws

    Thanks. There are no messages in that queue folder. And there are also no messages in the "Pickup" folder where the 3rd part POP3 software is saying it's putting the e-mails it downloads from an external mail server.
    However, in the "Failed Message Retry Queue" within the Exchange System Manager it shows 1 "Queued" message, 1000B size, dated 03.01.1601, and I can't freeze/unfreeze/delete it. But it is there since a long time while the system was still working.

    +
    0 Votes
    BigRed_32399

    You can use telnet to connect to port 25 of your exchange smtp virtual server to make sure it is up.
    from command prompt:
    Telnet [smtp ip address goes here] 25 and press enter.
    You should see the smtp response like this:
    220 MY-Mail-Server Microsoft ESMTP MAIL Service, Version: 6.0.3
    790.3959 ready at Thu, 30 Jul 2009 08:43:05 -0400
    You can then key in the HELO command string
    HELO mydomain.com and press return
    you should get a Hello back.
    you can continue the sequence of commands and actually send a message through to your mailbox if all is working on exchange.
    Use Google to lookup SMTP command line with TELNET.
    I also use bmail, a command line smtp mailer utility from beyondlogic.org to test with.

    +
    0 Votes
    samson99tx

    There are 9 different services that are tied to Exchange Server.
    For POP3, you need IMAP4, Information Store, Exchange Management, POP3, and System Attendant. If these services are not "STARTED" then exchange server will not deliver email.

    Sometimes, after a power 'blink', you will have to close all of them, and then restart them, even when it shows "started. Sometimes they are in a "hang up state". As a good practice, always reboot after a power failure.
    Always check all of your services.

    Sometimes, an exploit will cause the services to end, or hang up. In those cases, STOP ALL of the exchange services, and then RESTART them.
    If that makes your system unresponsive, then you will need to reboot.

    +
    0 Votes
    itjaws

    Thanks. I restarted all services and of course restarted the server few times after few adjustments trying to fix the problem. Anyway, I think I only restarted about 5 services, will check the remaining ones if you are saying 9. However, IMAP was always stopped cause I use a 3rd party software to download e-mails from external mailboxes by POP3.

    +
    0 Votes
    itjaws

    Basically solved, uninstalled a 3rd party security software. E-mails are flowing again internally and externally, but still somehow some e-mails are not sent out, if I track them it says at the end "Message transferred to ******************* through SMTP" and gives an error coz ******** is not found in the directory. And the SMTP Queues Growth is still around 1500 minutes.