How to Fix – “Exchange Database (DB) Dirty Shutdown” Error

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Exchange Server is an e-mail server introduced by Microsoft to save emails, attachments, calendars, contacts etc. It plays an important part in the organization as it is used for storing and distribution of data. It keeps the copies of Outlook account mailboxes. However, it also necessary to safeguard Exchange and associated files, as it is susceptible to several issues and one of them is Dirty Shutdown. Let us discuss more about Dirty Shutdown and how to repair Exchange database dirty shutdown error in the next section.

Overview – Dirty Shutdown in Exchange

Generally, Dirty Shutdown means inappropriate closing of something. For example, have anyone heard of Transaction log files. They play important role in easy working of Exchange database that a little inconsistency can cause Exchange to function abruptly or unable to start up at all.

Let us explain the same in brief about with respect to Exchange Server.

Important Role of Exchange Transaction Log Files

The transaction logs of Exchange trace every modification performed in the database. The data that needs to be updated in the mailbox of user that initially listed in log files and then written to database. As file size of log is fixed, so once the log file is full, a new one will be created with the next order of number.

Exchange Transaction log file is kind of asset when the database requires to be stored from older version. Thus, Exchange admins are always recommended to not to delete log files permanently. Instead, it would be better to take backup of log files at safe location and remove them after making sure that database of older version would not be required any longer.

How essential are Transaction Log Files from Perspective of Exchange Dirty Shutdown Error?

The proper shuts down of Exchange database can start Exchange Server smoothly. For appropriate shut down of database, one need to make sure that all data in the transaction log is committed to database files. When entire transaction log data has been executed, the database is counted as detached to those log files which is green signal for error-free shut down. When again server starts, check database state. If it is attached to log files, then database considered to be in Dirty Shutdown State. Hence, server first detach the database by replaying the existing log files and proceeds to different tasks. In spite of this, below are some common Dirty Shutdown errors discussed.

Common Dirty Shutdown Errors of Exchange

After knowing this issue, a user may get several errors confirming it a dirty shutdown. Below are some common errors mentioned that usually appears when Exchange goes to this condition:

Now, the next section will focus on how to rectify such errors and how to transform the Exchange state from dirty to clean shutdown.

How to Fix Exchange Database Dirty Shutdown?

Before implementing the fixing procedure, here are few points that one need to take care of:

  1. Keep data backup of .edb and .stm files with transaction log files.
  2. You should have sufficient space to complete the process.

Additionally, I would like to make aware of Eseutil and Isinteg. Both are an in-built tool provided by Microsoft to deliver the solution to repair Exchange database dirty shutdown.

Here, the process discussed for dirty shutdown in Exchange 2019, 2016, 2013, 2010, 2007, 2003 etc.

Use Eseutil

Step 1. Check Exchange Database Dirty Shutdown State: Eseutil/mh

In the first step, check database if it is in dirty shutdown state or not. In order to check the same runs the given below command:

eseutil /mh “path of priv.edb”

eseutil/mh “C:\ program files\ exchsrvr\mdbdata\priv1.edb”

If you need to examine the same for public folder then it is required to run below command:

eseutil/mh “C:\program files\exchsrvr\mdbdata\pub1.edb”

Here, eseutil/mh cmd is used to check the state or uniformity of the Exchange.

Step 2. Fix Exchange DB Dirty Shutdown: Eseutil/R

After executing the above-mentioned command, if Exchange database found in the dirty shutdown state, then it is needed to fix the same using the command given below:

eseutil/r “C:\program files\exchsrvr\mdbdata\priv1.edb

The command will help to fix Exchange database dirty shutdown to clean.

Step 3. Check Consistency and Perform Hard Repair: Eseutil/P

Check the database consistency again. If it did not work, try hard repair by running the command given below:

eseutil/p “C:\program files\exchsrvr\mdbdata\priv1.edb

Note: eseutil/p, it is command where data loss risk is involved. Microsoft does not allow using this command as it is not good to execute hard repair.

Step 4. De-Frag Log from Database: Eseutil/D

After running hard repair, defrag database using given command:

eseutil/d “C:\program files\exchsrvr\mdbdata\priv1.edb”

Again, check Exchange database consistency.

Note: The possibilities of dirty shutdown state error can again appear with issue of database attachment. Run the below command for the same:

eseutil/r “C:\program files\exchsrvr\ “/d “C:\program files\exchsrvr\mdbdata\priv1.edb”/i

“/l” used to avoid missing log file of Exchange dirty shutdown. It particularly needs to execute these commands in old editions of MS Exchange. It is when one need to access single data from multiple databases. “/d” is the parameter used with qualified path to EDB where one need to provide the directory path instead of complete path.

Use Isinteg

Another technique to remove Exchange database dirty shutdown is by making use of isinteg command. The given command will help to fix unexpected or dirty shutdown error.

“isinteg –s  servername  -fix  -test  alltests”

Dirty Shutdown is not good for MS Exchange Server. It should be repaired as it can cause Exchange database file corruption.

How to Repair Exchange Database Dirty Shutdown Error?

There is an option available where one do not need to execute single command. Because, running multiple commands to fix error can cause several unknown issues or lead to data loss if not properly implemented. Thus, require technical expert help. Additionally, a user can perform the process using Eseutil but not always provide appropriate result in all circumstances. Therefore, it is advised to use a trustworthy method to fix Exchange database dirty shutdown error using third party utility.

Final Words:

In the blog, multiple approaches has been discussed to fix Exchange DB dirty shutdown error. The error can be resolved using Eseutil and Isinteg commands but can cause data loss as well as unknown issues. Thus, it is better to always use reliable, secure and error-free EDB Recovery method. The software not repairs the issue but also allows to access them in multiple formats such as PST, PDF, MSG, HTML and more. Moreover, one can move repaired EDB files on cloud accounts like O365 and Live Exchange Server.