Server Fault is a question and answer site for system and network administrators. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

We have an Exchange 2003 SP2 server on 2003, whose store got corrupted after IBM RAID got bad-stripes and bad-blocks.

Unfortunately the backups were discovered out to be out of date, so now we facing almost a month worth of data loss (and very certain ire of management), unless we manage to merge the data from that old back-up, and users Outlooks.

So my question, if the following possible?

  • Set a dial-tone store to let users work now while we sort out Exchange

  • Restore the month-old backup to a new store

  • Merge the old back-up and the dial-tone store mails to a new store

  • Merge the users Outlooks with the new store, producing a store as full as possible

Is this possible, and what would be the best approach to do this?


share|improve this question
up vote 4 down vote accepted

Once you get the dialtone going, the cached copies on the clients will be gone. So don't do it this way if you want the past month's emails in tact.

You're going to have to go around to each client and dump their Outlook to PSTs before you setup the dialtone database. Then you can create the dialtone database and start restoring the backup. Merge the databases. Import the PSTs (overwriting duplicates). Then you're done.

There might be better options out there though. If you put your log files on a separate spindle of drives (as is the best practice) than you should be able to restore the database and then replay the log files. This assumes that you also did not enable circular logging.

As I always say, you have my sympathies but I hope you learned an important lesson. Backups can't be relied on unless they're monitored and TESTED regularly.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.