Event ID 8017 Backing up Exchange 2003 Virtual Machines (Part 1)

I was thinking about this also at the weekend (I really should get out more) about how to reliably backup my Exchange 2003 SP1 Virtual Machine running at home. Now it only supports five users and a few resource mailboxes, but now that my wife's email is on it, it suddenly becomes mission critical of course. Since installing it a couple of weeks ago, I'd been relying on a scheduled backup of the VHD files from the host itself, but this isn't sustainable on a long-term basis due to disk space requirements.

One of the first hurdles to overcome was hitting Event ID 8017 when using NT Backup to do a full online backup of the first (and only) storage group. The Event Log says "The operation failed. Consult the backup Report for more details. This didn't give a lot of further information either.

However, after some searching through the internet, I found the answer. It's simply a case that I had circular logging still enabled for that storage group (even though I swear blind I had turned it off). Under Exchange System Manager, select the First Storage Group, right click and de-select "Enable Circular Logging". After this, it will be necessary to cycle the Exchange Information Store service - that was the "trick" to making it work.

Hope that helps someone.

Comments (3)
  1. Troy Phillips says:

    We also run Exchange 2003 in a virtual machine. Do you have any idea why this is specifically not supported by Microsoft (Refer to http://www.support.microsoft.com/kb/897614)? The fact that the KB article states that SP2 will be supported implies that there is a specific reason.

    We also intend to run SPS 2003 on virtual machine – we sure know how to pick them 🙂

  2. Hi Troy. Had to ask the product group to confirm, but the message is pretty clear. We don’t yet *support* Exchange on any virtualisation platform, but as you know, it can be used for test, dev and demonstration without issue. Essentially the product group will only support something which they can feasibly test. Unfortunately (and I’m assuming it relates to them being busy with Exchange 2003 SP2 and Exchange 12) they have not tested SP1 under Virtual Server. Exchange 2003 SP2 will be fully tested under both physical and Virtual Server environments, and obviously any issues which arise from using Virtualisation will be addressed during this test cycle. However, bear in mind, that there will still be the concern that a Virtual Exchange 2003 SP2 server will not run as efficiently as a physical server, especially when under heavy load due to I/O bottlenecks for example – disk I/O is critical to a virtual environment, so would need careful planning.

    Hope this helps.


  3. davide says:

    Thank you so much. I’ve same problem and your tricks help me.

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