*Bulletin ID* A2E_165
*Last Review* 05/24/2007
*Revision* 1.0
*Previous IDs* None
*Obsoletes* None

Monitoring and Completing the Add2Exchange 4.x Startover Upgrade Process


Instructions for completing the 4.x upgrade process from versions prior to 4.0 after a Remote Upgrade Session from DidItBetter Software.


After purchasing a Remote Upgrade Session from DidItBetter Software, a DidItBetter Support Agent will perform the necessary steps to begin the upgrade process. Since the upgrade process from versions prior to Add2Exchange 4.x introduces a new database engine, the old information must be cleared out of Exchange, a process known as a StartOver. Because the StartOver process can potentially take many hours, this stage of the upgrade is not monitored by the DidItBetter Support Agent. These instructions guide the end user on how to monitor and complete the StartOver process on their own.

The process is broken into three parts:

1. Monitoring the A2E Director.

The A2E Director process manages the entire upgrade. Since Add2Exchange runs as a Service, there is no user interface to monitor, so Task Manager may be used to determine when the Director has finished.

2. Verifying Completion and Changing Relationships.

Once the process is complete, you will verify that your Source items are intact and approve completion of the process. This step offers recovery options in case of unexpected results.

Any changes to the arrangement of Relationships or their settings should be done at this stage, if desired or necessary. This step is optional in almost all cases.

3. Starting the Add2Exchange Service.

Exit the console and resume synchronization. Destination folders will begin repopulating at this point.

Monitoring the A2E Director

The A2E Director process manages the entire upgrade. Since Add2Exchange runs as a Service, there is no user interface to monitor, so Task Manager may be used to determine when the Director has finished.

When the DidItBetter Support Agent completes the installation of the new version, you will have been briefed on the StartOver process. Since the StartOver is user-visible, the StartOver may have already been started for you or you may choose to wait until an appropriate maintenance window to begin the process.

If the StartOver process has not been initiated, do so by entering the Console application. Double-click the Add2Exchange Console application icon.

The next three screens inform you of the process.

Click OK to each of the screens.

At this point, you will be prompted to start the service.

Click Yes to start the service. This initiates the StartOver process.

IMPORTANT: Do NOT open the Console application while the StartOver is under way. This stops the process, which means you must start again from the beginning when you initiate it again. Since the procedure can be very time consuming, we recommend that you only open the Console if there is a problem you have found and need to stop the process entirely.

If the StartOver process has been initiated, you can monitor the process through the Task Manager application. Start the Task Manager by right-clicking on the Taskbar and selecting Task Manager.

Go to the Processes tab and sort on Image Name by clicking the column heading.

Wait for the A2E Director.exe process to exit for at least two minutes. This will leave the Add2Exchange Service.exe process remaining by itself.

At this point you can check the completion of the process by examining the Event Viewer logs for Add2Exchange.

The StartOver process can be very time-consuming, depending on the number of relationships and number of items affected by those relationships. The minimum amount of time you should allow for the StartOver is thirty minutes. Check in again every thirty minutes or so until the process completes. If you have over twenty relationships and many thousands of items, the process can take the better part of a day or more.

While the StartOver process is underway, copies created by Add2Exchange in Destination folders will not be available, so be sure to allow the process to run in its entirety to begin repopulating Destination folders as soon as possible for your end users.

The StartOver process is now ready to be verified. Continue to the next step.

Verifying Completion and Changing Relationships

Since deletion of Add2Exchange copies is part of the StartOver process, you want to verify that nothing unexpected has happened to your items in Source folders. Occasionally Add2Exchange copies may have been inadvertently placed in a Source folder by hand, resulting in unexpected (but correct) deletion of Source items. If this has happened, this stage of the process provides special recovery options.

Verify the results of the StartOver process by visiting the Source folder(s) in Outlook and examining the item counts in the lower left-hand corner. Verify that this number matches the number you began with. If you are missing important items, refer to the Missing Source Items section.

Note that for Calendars, you need to select a view that includes all items, such as the By Category view, in order to see the total count. You can set the item view in the Advanced toolbar, highlighted in the upper right-hand corner of the figure. To enable this toolbar, go to the View > Toolbars menu.

If you have verified that your Source folders are in good condition, open the Add2Exchange Console. You will see the StartOver Completion Dialog.

Do NOT use the Scrub Only option unless you have lost items from the Source folder(s). In this case you need to refer to the Missing Source Items section.
Do NOT click OK if you have lost items from the Source folder(s) since you need to use the Scrub Only process since this is the only opportunity to use the recovery process.

If you receive a different dialog that discusses item corruption in Exchange, refer to the section Invalid Items.

Click OK to confirm success and enter the console.

At this point you can make any changes to relationships which are necessary before repopulating the Destination folders. In particular, if you have created duplicate Source folders to avoid the Source folder relationship limitation in versions 3.x, you will want to consolidate those Source folders and rebuild the relationships from the now single authoritative Source, deleting the relationships from the old Source folder as well. Do this before starting the Add2Exchange Service.

Starting the Add2Exchange Service

Once you have completed the StartOver process, confirmed its successful completion and made any desired or necessary changes to relationships, you may exit the console.

Click Yes to start the service. Add2Exchange will now begin synchronizing and repopulating Destination folders. Provide enough time for the synchronization cycle to complete before notifying users that the process has finished.

Troubleshooting the StartOver Process

Missing Source Items

If you find that the Source items are not as they were expected to be, for example important items are missing from the Source folder(s), then do NOT click OK. Take a moment to read this section and then follow the instructions.

If items are missing, it is likely that there were Add2Exchange copies inadvertently placed in your Source folder. If you need this items back, use your backups to restore the items to the Source folder(s). Do NOT do a full Exchange restore, only restore those items that reside in Source folders, since the Scrub Only process will not remove Destination folder items, which is a major point of the StartOver process.

Once the items are restored, go back to the still-open confirmation dialog and click Scrub Only. The process will run again. Monitor the process as described already and verify the Source folder(s) again. The outcome should now match your expectations and you can continue with the Verifying Completion and Changing Relationships section.

Invalid Items

Occasionally the StartOver process may find items in Exchange which cannot be processed. These may called corrupted messages or invalid messages. The StartOver process cannot complete while these messages exist because they will cause synchronization to fail. Take a moment to read this section and then follow the instructions.

Invalid items must be salvaged manually before they are deleted by the StartOver process. While the StartOver process has been specially designed to handle these kind of items and can remove them where other tools cannot, it is not able to remove all of the invalid items in all cases. If so, the process will run and complain about invalid items again. If this occurs, contact DidItBetter Support or an Exchange expert for assistance removing them. In many cases, the only way to delete such stubborn items is to remove and recreate the containing folder.

To salvage the information from the items, you will be given a list of the Subjects of the items (contact names or meeting or task subjects) and their containing folders.

Click the Print Contents button for a full list of the items. You must click this button before you can move to the next stage of the process.

Visit the folders in question in Outlook and write down or export as much of the information as possible from these items. You will use this information later to recreate the items before synchronizing with the new version. Do not forget to do this step.

Once you have recovered as much information as possible, click the Delete Messages button.

Start the Add2Exchange Service and monitor the process as described in the Monitoring the A2E Director section.

Applies To

  • Add2Exchange Standard

Keywords: StartOver, 4.x Upgrade