Monday, 20 January 2014
1/20/2014 12:55:00 am 0

How to perform Lotus Notes Recovery for corrupt unlogged databases?

Domino server saves all its user database and information in NSF file format. Like other files, these files can also get corrupted due to several reasons such as: system shutdown, virus attack, hardware failure, manual interruptions etc.

We must take proper care so that the database can be prevented from corruption or data loss situations. Taking regular backups is a good practice to save user from critical data loss situations.

Here I would like to introduce the term “Transaction logging”. Transaction logging is a good way to recover your Notes database in case of server or power failure. You will require a backup tool along with transaction logs in order to recover data in case of disk failure.

The Domino server log file:

First time you start the Domino server, The Domino server log file is created. You can easily view and search for the file. It is named as LOG.NSF file. You can yourself make modifications in the file size and customize it for saving some additional information in it.

LOG.NSF file:It stores information about the Notes users and databases.  It also contains the list of corrupted documents and views along with detailed information such as the document number and database name. If the domino couldn’t rebuild the damaged or corrupted views, the related information is also stored in the transaction log.

There are minor chances that a user has to face the data corruption issues if he is using Transaction logging.
For unlogged databases, there are more chances of occurrence of database corruption related issues. If the Notes database gets corrupt then the user require to try some Lotus Notes Recovery mechanisms.

Most common Lotus Notes Recovery methods are (applied for unlogged databases):

• Use Fixup command    
• Use Updall command
• Use Compact command
• Rebuild the database views
• Create database replica

In this article, I am going to give a brief introduction to the inbuilt Lotus Notes repair utilities (Fixup, Updall and Compact). 

Let’s go ahead.

The inbuilt Lotus Notes repair utilities (Fixup, Updall and Compact):

In case of view and document corruption Fixup command is used to fix the corruption. First run Updall command for resolving the views and full-text indexes corruption, after that try Fixup. If Updall and Fixup fail in solving the issue, then try ‘Compact with the -c option’. If the inbuilt Notes recovery utilities (Fixup, Updall & Compact) fail to fix the Notes database corruption, then, there is no option left for the user other than purchasing some third party Lotus Notes Recovery software.

Use Fixup command: 

When the Notes database is improperly or unexpectedly closed then, fixup automatically scan the databases and fix the inconsistencies whenever you restart the server
Fixup scans all the database to fix the partially committed operations (the server might be terminated due to server failure, power failure or hardware failure, etc.), if the database consistency check process by Fixup is going on a database or it is still pending and meanwhile user tries to access that database Then a message is prompted that says "This database cannot be opened because a consistency check of it is in progress."
At system startup, multiple Fixup tasks (double of the number of processors available on the server) run to fix the database issues. You can change the Fixup task settings by making some modifications in the NOTES.INI file.
You can customize the Fixup to run it manually for checking the database corruption and fixing them.
To run Fixup manually, follow any of the given ways: 
  • Go to the Files tab > Fixup tool,  then Run Fixup – This method is suitable if the Fixup command is to be run on one or a few databases.  .
  • Go to Task > Start tool, then Run Fixup -- This method is suitable if the Fixup command is to be run on all databases
  • Use command-line options or the server console to run Fixup(if the Domino Administrator client isn’t available)
  • Customize the Program document to run  Fixup  at a scheduled time
  • Run Fixup on a Win32 platform if it couldn’t be run on the server console due to any reason.  In such case, you need to run the command with "n" prefix (nfixup)
Note: The first two ways of using Fixup eliminate the need of using command-line options. If you are using the first way (Go to Files tab > Fixup tool, then Run Fixup) then, you can't use the Domino Administrator while the Fixup task is going on. But while using the second method you can use the Domino Administrator along with the Fixup task continuing side by side.

Use Updall command:  

You can run the Updall task on a server to fix the database and view corruption issues.

Given below are the Ways to run Updall command:
•Open Domino Administrator then Go to Task> Start tool -- Use this method if you don't want to use command-line options.
•If the Domino Administrator isn’t available on the server then, you can use the ‘Load Updall’ console command to run the Updall directly at the server console eliminating the need of command-line options.
•Customize the Program document to run  Updall at a scheduled time
•Run Updall on a Win32 platform if it couldn’t be run on the server console due to any reason.  In such case, you need to run the command with "n" prefix( n Updall)

Use Compact command:

Given below are the Ways to run Compact command:
• Go to Task - Start tool run Compact
• Open Domino Administrator. Go to the  Files tab and then, Run Fixup tool
• Use a console command to run Compact
• Run Compact at scheduled times by using a Program document.

If the inbuilt Notes repair tools fail, you can rebuild the Notes database views and create a database replica to deal with the Notes views and database corruption issues. If all of the above Lotus Notes Recovery methods fail to recover your corrupt/inaccessible database, then opt for some powerful third party Lotus Notes recovery software.

I hope the article is helpful for those who are dealing with Notes corruption issues.

Read my Forthcoming posts, to know more about the inbuilt Lotus notes recovery utilities, available command line options and the ways to rebuild the Notes database views & create a database replica.


Post a Comment