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How to Seed a Standby Continuous Replication Target

 

Applies to: Exchange Server 2007 SP3, Exchange Server 2007 SP2, Exchange Server 2007 SP1

Topic Last Modified: 2008-07-16

This topic contains two procedures. The first procedure explains how to use the Update-StorageGroupCopy cmdlet to seed the storage group copy. The second procedure explains how to use the Exchange Management Console to dismount a database for offline copying to the standby continuous replication (SCR) target database folder.

Seeding is the process of making available a baseline copy of a database on the SCR target. Depending on the situation, seeding can be an automatic process or a manual process in which you initiate the seeding. You can use the procedure in situations where you determine seeding is required. The size of the database being copied directly correlates to the amount of time it takes for the seeding task to complete.

Seeding is required under the following conditions:

  • When a SCR target is created.

  • After a failure occurs in which data is lost and an SCR target has become diverged or unrecoverable.

  • When the system has detected a corrupted log file that cannot be replayed into the SCR target database.

  • After an offline defragmentation of the SCR source or target database occurs.

  • After a page scrubbing of the SCR source database occurs, and you want to propagate the changes to the SCR target database.

  • After the log generation sequence for the storage group has been reset to 1.

You can perform seeding in Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 by using the following methods:

  • Automatic seeding   An automatic seed produces a copy of a storage group's database on the SCR target. Automatic seeding requires that the first log file generated by the storage group be available on the SCR source.

  • Seeding using the Update-StorageGroupCopy cmdlet   You can use the Update-StorageGroupCopy cmdlet with the StandbyMachine parameter in the Exchange Management Shell to seed an SCR target copy.

  • Manually copying the offline database   This process dismounts the database and copies the database file to the same location on the SCR target computer. If you use this method, there will be an interruption in service because the procedure requires you to dismount the database.

    noteNote:
    Some backup applications may support a mechanism to use a backup as the source of the seed database. Restores to an SCR target are not supported. If this option is supported, it must be explicitly and completely supported by the backup application.

To perform the following procedures on a computer that has the Mailbox server role installed, the account you use must be delegated the Exchange Server Administrator role and local Administrators group for the target server. For more information about permissions, delegating roles, and the rights that are required to administer Exchange 2007, see Permission Considerations.

importantImportant:
If a database or the log files exist in the location where the SCR target copy will be stored, the database or log files must be removed prior to initiating the seeding operation.
importantImportant:
The Update-StorageGroupCopy procedure must be run from the SCR target computer.

  1. Open the Exchange Management Shell.

  2. Suspend replication for the storage group by running the following command:

    Suspend-StorageGroupCopy -Identity <Server\StorageGroupName> -StandbyMachine <SCRTargetMachine>
    
  3. Remove database files, all log files, and checkpoint files from the SCR target computer. Remove *.log, *.jrs, *.chk, and the .edb files from the configured directories (logs directory, the system files directory, and the directory hosting the database file).

  4. Run the following command to seed the SCR target storage group copy:

    Update-StorageGroupCopy -Identity <Server\StorageGroupName> -StandbyMachine <SCRTargetMachine>
    
    noteNote:
    The Update-StorageGroupCopy command automatically resumes replication to the storage group copy. If you do not want the Update-StorageGroupCopy command to automatically resume replication, run the command with the ManualResume parameter. For more information, see Update-StorageGroupCopy. To resume replication manually after running the Update-StorageGroupCopy command, run the following command:
    Resume-StorageGroupCopy -Identity:<Server>\<StorageGroupName> -StandbyMachine <SCRTargetMachine>
    
    noteNote:
    If you receive errors when you run the Update-StorageGroupCopy task, for more information see the errors table in this topic Update-StorageGroupCopy.
  5. After the Update-StorageGroupCopy command is complete and the storage group copy is resumed, verify that replication to the SCR target is working correctly by using the Get-StorageGroupCopyStatus cmdlet with the StandbyMachine parameter.

    importantImportant:
    Make sure that the data is actually flowing because a lack of data flow can make it look like operations are normal when they are not.

  1. Open the Exchange Management Console.

  2. Expand Server Configuration, and then select Mailbox.

  3. In the result pane, select the Mailbox server that contains the database that you want to dismount.

  4. In the work pane, right-click the database to be dismounted, and then select Dismount Database.

  5. Suspend replication on the dismounted database.

  6. After the replication is suspended on the database, copy the database file (.edb file) from the production database folder to the SCR target database folder.

    noteNote:
    The location of the production database folder can be found on either the Summary page or the Properties page.
  7. After the database file has been copied from the SCR source database folder to the SCR target database folder, right-click the dismounted database, and then select Mount Database.

    noteNote:
    Seeding is complete when the file is copied. Client access is restored after the production database has been mounted.
  8. Resume replication for the dismounted database.

    noteNote:
    Seeding is now complete, and transaction log replication and replay will now occur automatically.

For more information about the Exchange Management Shell cmdlets described in this topic, see:

For more information about managing your SCR environment, see Managing Standby Continuous Replication.

 
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