I don't know whether you have come across this one but it has totally perplexed me and I can't find anything on the web to suggest what is happening. I have been reading various papers on Exchange 2000 disaster recovery. And the common suggestion is that it is good to have an offline exchange server in the background that can be used to recover lost users data or in the event of a disaster rebuild your site. However, to achieve this, you need to have an offline backup of your server, databases, log files, system state etc. Veritas Backup Exec allows you to do this by including an "execute before backup starts" and an "execute after backup completes" batch file when you run a job. They suggest on their tech support site to use the following script which we have copied and used: Exchstop.bat NET STOP pop3svc /yes NET STOP imap4svc /yes NET STOP MSExchangeES /yes NET STOP MSExchangeMTA /yes NET STOP MSExchangeIS /yes NET STOP MSExchangeSA /yes NET STOP MSExchangeSA /yes This shuts down all the services before the backup starts. A similar batch file starts the services following completion of the backup. The only problem is that it does not appear to work. If you execute the batch file from windows by double clicking it's icon in explorer (when logged on with the backup exec service account) the batch file works fine and all the services are properly shut down. However, when run from the backup software, although the log file shows that the batch file has been run, the services are not shut down and the .edb and .stm files are not backed up (says skipping open files). This seems bizarre. We used to use a script with Exchange 5.5 every once in a while and I know that that worked. My thoughts are that maybe the Windows 2000 security patches (lockdown.exe and urlscan.exe) are preventing command line access to the backup exec program. Could this be so and have you seen anything similar? Happy Chrismas and all the best. Chris Cox BEng, DiplEng Information Technology Manager Allen & Heath Limited,Kernick Industrial Estate,Penryn Cornwall. UK TR10 9LU Tel +44 (0)870 7556250, Fax +44(0)1326 370139 Direct: +44(0)870 7556270 Mobile +44(0)781 555 1962 EMail chris.cox@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx Web http://www.allen-heath.com <http://www.allen-heath.com/> ***DISCLAIMER*** This Email and any files transmitted with it are confidential and intended solely for the use of the individual to whom or the entity to which they are addressed. If you have received this email in error please notify the sender immediately. Please note that any views or opinions presented in this email are those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of Allen & Heath Limited. The recipient should check this email and any attachments for the presence of viruses. Allen & Heath Limited accepts no liability for any damage caused by any virus transmitted via this email.