MSDTC Appears to Be Missing from a Cluster

[This topic is intended to address a specific issue called out by the Exchange Server Analyzer Tool. You should apply it only to systems that have had the Exchange Server Analyzer Tool run against them and are experiencing that specific issue. The Exchange Server Analyzer Tool, available as a free download, remotely collects configuration data from each server in the topology and automatically analyzes the data. The resulting report details important configuration issues, potential problems, and nondefault product settings. By following these recommendations, you can achieve better performance, scalability, reliability, and uptime. For more information about the tool or to download the latest versions, see "Microsoft Exchange Analyzers" at]  

Topic Last Modified: 2006-04-20

The Microsoft® Exchange Server Analyzer Tool reads the following registry entry to determine whether the Microsoft Distributed Transaction Coordinator (MSDTC) resource exists in a cluster:


The Exchange Server Analyzer displays a warning if the value of ClusterMSDTCInstance is 0.

The MSDTC resource must be present in an Exchange Server cluster to support initial installation and service pack upgrades. However, it is not a critical component and is not required while Exchange is running.

You or another administrator in your organization might have removed the MSDTC resource because you know that it is not required when Exchange is running.

However, it is recommended that you do not remove the MSDTC resource after your initial setup of Exchange Server 2003. If you keep the MSDTC resource in the cluster, you will be able to run Service Pack setups and other updates.

To resolve this warning, create a new MSDTC resource. For specific steps about how to create an MSDTC resource, see "How to Install the Microsoft Distributed Transaction Coordinator in a Windows Server 2003 Server Cluster" in "Deploying Exchange Server 2003 in a Cluster" in the Exchange Server 2003 Deployment Guide (

For more information about MSDTC and Exchange see "Cluster Groups" in "Understanding Exchange Server 2003 Clustering" in the Exchange Server 2003 High Availability Guide (

For more information about how to add the MSDTC resource in Microsoft Windows Server™ 2003, see Microsoft Knowledge Base article 301600, "How to Configure Microsoft Distributed Transaction Coordinator on a Windows Server 2003 Cluster" (

Knowledge Base article 301600 includes a reference to article 817064, "How to enable network DTC access in Windows Server 2003" ( It is an Exchange Server security best practice not to enable network DTC access for an Exchange cluster. If you are configuring the Distributed Transaction Coordinator resource for an Exchange cluster, do not enable network DTC access.