How to Fix the Error Content Index State Failed and Suspended in Exchange Server 2013?
In this article, we are going discuss the possible fixes to resolve the index state failed and suspended error in Exchange Server 2013. This applies to Exchange Server 2013 which is standalone and is not member of a Database Availability Group (DAG).
So, what happens when the index state is either failed or suspended? Technically, there would be no interruption in the mail flow as emails will still be processed, sent, and received. However, the problem is that this will prevent the users to search for anything in their Exchange resources, executed from the Outlook Web Access (OWA) or Outlook.
Fixes to Resolve the Error Index State Failed and Suspended
1. First, you need to check your databases to see where the failed content index is, if you have more than one database. For this, you can use the command — Get-MailboxDatabaseCopyStatus (as given below).
Get-MailboxDatabaseCopyStatus * | ft -auto
In case one or more databases have issues, you will see the ContentIndexState as FailedAndSuspended. This indicates which database have the issues and where to specifically troubleshoot.
2. For more details, you need to investigate the Event Viewer. The Event Viewer is a good source of information when it comes to a thorough investigation. You can look for the event with ID 1022 under the Application Log, with the source MSExchangeIS. Another event to look for is the Event ID 1009 under the source MSExchangeFastSearch where you would be presented with the below error.
The indexing of mailbox database DB02 encountered an unexpected exception. The complete error message looks like:
Microsoft.Exchange.Search.Core.Abstraction.OperationFailedException: The component operation has failed.
— -> Microsoft.Exchange.Search.Engine.FeedingSkippedForCorruptionException: “Feeding was skipped for ‘63fe7551–8100–4e3e-9a3e-4b14744eddb6 (DBX01)’ due to the state ‘Failed’, error code: ‘CatalogCorruption’, failure code: ‘2400519’, failure reason: ‘Failed to initialize FastServer: Generation mismatch: 0 < GID [IndexName=63FE7551–8100–4E3E-9A3E-4B14744EDDB612.Single]’.” at Microsoft.Exchange.Search.Engine.SearchFeedingController.InternalExecutionStart() at Microsoft.Exchange.Search.Core.Common.Executable.InternalExecutionStart(Object state) — — End of inner exception stack trace — — at Microsoft.Exchange.Search.Core.Common.Executable.EndExecute(IAsyncResult asyncResult) at Microsoft.Exchange.Search.Engine.SearchRootController.ExecuteComplete(IAsyncResult asyncResult)
In this case, it is suggested to rebuild the failed indexes. For this, you need to first stop the Search services on the Exchange Server. During this operation, any search on other healthy databases will be affected. These services are:
- Microsoft Exchange Search Host Controller
- Microsoft Exchange Search
This can be done via the Services.msc or by using the command prompt as Administrator, as given below.
Once the services are stopped, navigate to the path where the EDB file resides and delete the folder with the GUID number of the database. Once this is done, you can start the services using the Services.msc or the command prompt as given below.
After some time, depending on the size of the databases and performance of the server, you can re-run the Get-MailboxDatabaseCopyStatus to see if the ContentIndexState changes to Healthy.
When there are issues with the Exchange Server and the troubleshooting practices fail, you might end up with a damaged or corrupted Exchange Server database. Due to corruption, the database will not index or would not mount. In such cases, the native tools are not enough as these will not guarantee the recovery of your databases and would require a considerable amount of time and resources to fix the problem. If the database is working but the index remains corrupted, you can use the New-MoveRequest to move the mailboxes. This will work only if the database is mounted. It cannot be used to move other Exchange Server resources, such as Public Folders.
To ensure recovery and restore services in minimum time in such cases, you can use third-party applications, such as Stellar Repair for Exchange. This application can open multiple Exchange database files (EDB) from any version of Exchange Server. You can open corrupt databases. In fact, you would not need an Exchange Server to open the files as you can install the application on a Windows 10/11 machine or even on a Windows Server operating system. The installation takes only a few minutes.
You can open your EDB databases and browse through them in an Outlook-like interface. You can see a full HTML preview and granularly export the mailboxes to PST and other formats, such as HTML, MSG, EML, and PDF. In case the database is unmounted and a new database is created, you can easily export recovered database directly to a new live Exchange Database.