[ExchangeList] Re: Mailbox issue - Outlook 2007

  • From: Jabber Wock <jabberwock99@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: exchangelist@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Wed, 3 Jun 2009 10:00:54 -0400

We had a similar situation with Ex2k3 and Outlook 2007 SP2 a while back when several users on one storage group had mailboxes of 2G,3G,5G and even larger.  Users were constantly freezing, even when simply scroling from one email to another, and often had to bomb out of Outlook (crash and restart Outlook 2007 yuk!).  We spent a lot of time on it.  We ran the Windows performance monitor tool and other tools.  In the end we found:
a) Make sure that there is no mailbox folder with more than 4000 items in it.  If there is, archive that folder to sub-folders, or better yet, to an off-server PST file if feasible.  Once any Outlook folder gets over 4000 items, the mailbox will "thrash" because it will perform multiple disk accesses every time.  Outlook prefetches up to around 5000 items.  If more than 5000 then the prefetch is done multiple times, for each 5000 item block.  This is done on EVERY access.  So keeping the item count in any folder under 4000 is good.  This goes for EVERY folder including deleted items, archived items, etc.
b) Check the disk for hardware issues.  Try replacing the disk(s) with newer faster disks if possible.  Even SATA drives are faster now than say 1-2 year old drives.  Check performance with disk performance tools like HDTune or any tool of your choice.
c) Check your disk spindle architecture, relative to where the mailbox db files, streaming files, transaction log files and SMTP log files are stored.  Ideally they should all be on separate spindles.  This is often not feasible or practical.  At least the DB and transaction log files MUST be on different spindles.  Note:  just because they are on different Windows volumes like E:, F: does not mean they are on separate spindles.  Check the underlying RAID and disk array configurations to identify what is on which physical spindle.
In our case we found a disk hardware problem as well as spindle related performance issues.  We ended up moving the mailboxes to a brand new Exchange 2003 server and the performance has been flawless ever since.

On Wed, Jun 3, 2009 at 5:50 AM, Patrick <london31uk@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
Hi Guys,
just need to get some clarity on this. We have a user whos mailbox if over 4GB, and she keepe getting locks and freezes. We have suggested to her that she archive her stuff, but my question is should this be happening? What is the maximum size a mailbox can be before you start encountering performance issues such as this
Exchange 2003
Windows 2003
outlook 2007

Other related posts: