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Exchange 2007/2010 Public Folder Store in an Inconsistent State

In Exchange Server 2007 or 2010 you may encounter an error that the public folder store is corrupted and is in an inconsistent state.

The following warning(s) were reported while loading topology information:

get-PublicFolderDatabase
Completed

Warning:
Object EX2007PF1EX2007PF1_SG1Public Folder Store (EX2007PF1) has been corrupted and it is in an inconsistent state. The following validation errors have occurred:

Warning:
The item “fbd8a0c6-8083-4175-915c-6842e6408af6” in public folder referral does not reference an existing server.

In this particular case the problem was a server in the public folder referral list that no longer existed. This could be seen by inspecting the CustomReferralServerList attribute of the public folder database.

Note the missing entry in the ServerName column above, though the ServerGuid, Cost, and Name were still populated.

But because the ServerName attribute was empty, removing the entry from the list could not be done by referencing it as the necessary pair of values (ie ServerName:Cost).

Fortunately PowerShell 2.0 makes it possible to remove an entry from an array by referencing it by number, using the RemoveAt method.

The first entry in an array is 0, so the fourth entry is 3.

The array now has the invalid attribute removed.

The final step is to update the public folder database with the new value.

This may take some time to replicate throughout your Active Directory, after which the public folder database should no longer report the inconsistent state.

Paul is a Microsoft MVP for Office Servers and Services. He works as a consultant, writer, and trainer specializing in Office 365 and Exchange Server. Paul is a co-author of Office 365 for IT Pros and several other books, and is also a Pluralsight author.
Category: Exchange Server

7 comments

  1. sunil says:

    Hi Paul

    Today I have found some of the public folders are corrupted and inconsistent state. Please guide me how to resolve this error.
    Exchange 2010 with Service Pack 3

    WARNING: Object domain.com/Microsoft Exchange System Objects/Bob Jones has been corrupted and it is in an inconsistent state. The following validation errors have occurred:

    WARNING: “Bob Jones” is not valid for Alias. Valid values are: Strings formed with characters from a to z (uppercase or lowercase), digits from 0 to 9, !, #, $, %, &,’, *, +, -, /, =, ?, ^, _, `, {, |, } or ~. One or more periods may be embedded in an alias, but each one of them should be preceded and followed by at least on of the other characters. Unicode characters from U+00A1 to U+00FF are also valid in an alias, but they will be mapped to a best-fit US-ASCII string in the email address which is generated from such an alias”

  2. Matt says:

    I’ve just inherited an Exchange server that’s been reporting this error for months. The only entry in the referral list is the corrupt entry, is this safe to remove if it’s the only entry there?

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