[ExchangeList] Re: Mailbox issue - Outlook 2007

  • From: Rick Boza <rickb@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: exchangelist@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Wed, 3 Jun 2009 16:09:31 -0400

What does PerfMon show with regard to disk IO?  Do you see any 'funny' spikes when the user is experiencing the problem?

What is the physical disk configuration for the server?  For example, are all your drives virtualized, and if so, how are those configured?

Finally, what's the network configuration and speed from client to XCHG server?

And finally, does it happen on any other systems?  What happens if you create a new profile and try that, does the problem recur or is performance clean?  Profile corruption can do some weird stuff.

Total speculation here: this sort of thing doesn't surprise me given the size of the mailbox and the combination with a virtualized server.  I lean toward the solution someone else offered: returning to cached mode.  You could see performance issues when starting up or especially when shutting down Outlook, but the actual usage should feel snappier to the user.  One thing I would expect to feel like it takes forever: shutting down the PC if the user closes Outlook and immediately tries to shut down.  Outlook could be doing things in the background that appear to hang the system.  At the very least I would take a look at this as a possible solution.  Of course, the first MB sync to OST will take a while.


On Wed, Jun 3, 2009 at 2:49 PM, Patrick <london31uk@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
Thanks guys. the only thing i failed to add was our Exchanger server is on VMware VM, saying that though, it is not a massive infrastructure with about 100 users, but only 25 active accounts.
The Pc is question is a about 3months old and almost cost what a mid class server would in todays terms, so it is no small box.

From: Jabber Wock <jabberwock99@xxxxxxxxx>
To: exchangelist@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Sent: Wednesday, June 3, 2009 3:00:54 PM

Subject: [ExchangeList] Re: Mailbox issue - Outlook 2007

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

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