I am sure that everyone working with Microsoft Exchange has had their share of problems. The problem I was faced with yesterday was that Exchange reached it's database storage limit of 16GB. The Exchange database consists of Mailbox store (priv1.edb), public folder store (pub1.edb) and the stem files priv1.stm and pub1.stm.
Once Exchange reaches the above limit you will not be able to mount the Mailbox store and your users will not be able to log into Exchange client (outlook). If you are running your clients in Online mode, I am mixed... Offline for mobile users, online for users that stay in the office.
Please note that there is a microsoft registry hack that will let you increase the above database size of 16GB to 17GB temporarily by applying a hotfix, however this is not a permanent fix and it did not work for me.
The only way for me to be able to mount my database was as following:
1. Run ESEUTIL (Exchange offline defrag) for syntax see below
2. Run Exchange Mailbox Management with custom settings to shrink the mailbox sizes of users with excessive attachments. I customized the Mailbox management settings under the Recepient policy to delete all emails that are more that 3mb in size. We are a cpa firm and often receive file attachments that are massive. Most of the times the 3mb files will become obsolete very quickly.
Exchange 2000 server includes a utility called Eseutil that replaces Edbutil and Eseutil utiliites that are included with earlier versions of Exchange
For more information on how to use Eseutil and various switches available for the utility please read this article on MS Knowledgebase