GroupWise Maintenance

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GroupWise Maintenance Best Practises

System Administration

Using NWAdmin

NWAdmin should not be used to administer GroupWise version 6 or newer.

Using ConsoleONE

Use only the latest version of ConsoleOne and the GroupWise snapins. To ensure that only ConsoleOne is to be used for administration, disable NWAdmin GroupWise Administration on upgraded systems.

ConsoleOne should be used for all administration, with the following exceptions:

  • Async Gateway
  • API Gateway
  • Exchange Gateway
  • Notes Gateway

Scheduled Maintenance

Use this list of steps for scheduled maintenance:

  1. Check and fix the structure of the information store nightly. Create an event (and enable it on each POA) that checks the structure of User, Message, and Document databases each evening during the week. Schedule this operation to run before the nightly backup.
  2. Check and fix the contents of the information store weekly. Create an event (and enable it on each POA) that checks the structure and contents of User, Message, and Document databases over the weekend. Schedule this operation to run following the Friday night backup. Review the log files Monday morning to determine the health of your message stores.
  3. Run Expire and Reduce to enforce the retention policy. Run Expire/Reduce on the message store at least weekly to enforce mailbox retention policies.
  4. Run Reduce Only to manage database sizes. Run Reduce Only on the information store at least weekly to manage the sizes of the GroupWise information store databases. Note: It is unnecessary to perform a Reduce Only if expire/reduce is run. After expiring, the reduce is automatically run.
  5. Leave "Nightly User Upkeep" enabled and set to occur early morning, after midnight. Leave the Nightly User Upkeep option on the POA enabled so uncompleted tasks are pushed forward to the next date on the calendar, deleted items are purged from the Trash folder according to the "Empty Trash / Automatic after" setting, and Personal Address Book entries are synchronized with the corresponding System Address Book entries (in case users are moved).
  6. Leave Quickfinder Indexing enabled. Leave Quickfinder Indexing enabled so Find activities are returned more quickly and less demand is made on the POA for each Find.
  7. Lock Cleanup Options to "Manual Delete and Archive." This will force users to choose which items they wish to store in their GroupWise Archives, preventing unnecessary expansion of archive directories. Cleanup should be performed via scheduled maintenance and should be done in accordance with your e-mail policy.
  8. Lock the archive path to the network "USERS" volume. Lock the path to a drive letter that is map-rooted to the user's home directory so that the setting will correctly apply to all users. You may also choose to place space restrictions on users to discourage abuse of the archive. With archives on the network, the administrator has the ability to back up user archives and can run maintenance on them without visiting user workstations. Do not store GroupWise archives on the mail volume.
  9. Set mailbox size limits. Locking the size of user's mailboxes allows you to control the size of the information store; users can see the space utilization of their mailbox from the GroupWise 6 client under Tools | Check Mailbox Size.
  10. Set message size limits. GroupWise 6 and above allows you to set a limit for the size for both internal (within the GroupWise system) and external (i.e., Internet mail) messages. Again, establishing this policy allows for greater control of the size of the information store as well as messaging traffic.


Use these guidelines for backup:

  1. Back up the Novell GroupWise Information Store nightly. The information store is everything under the post office directory. This includes the OFUSER, OFMSG, OFFILES, OFWORK and GWDMS directory structures. Whatever backup strategy you currently use, consider that many GroupWise database files remain open continuously and may even be in use (written to) during your backup. Your strategy should allow for the capture of these open files.
  2. Provide fault tolerance for the primary domain. Run Reduce Only on the information store at least weekly to manage the sizes of the GroupWise. Again, there is no need to do this if expire/reduce is running.
  3. Back up each domain database nightly. Domain databases are part of the administration system, and if they are damaged, they can be rebuilt from the primary domain database. If, however, changes made to a domain database have not been replicated to the primary yet, a simple rebuild may result in the loss of those administrative records (user objects, distribution lists, etc.) Having a recent backup to synchronize these records will make the rebuild more complete.
  4. Manually back up the primary domain database prior to and immediately following any major system changes. If you are merging systems, adding large numbers of users, or making other dramatic changes, use the DBCopy tool to capture the domain database before and after the changes have been made. This will make it possible for you to back out if necessary.


Use the following guidelines for restoration:

  1. One or more servers should be on standby to receive restored backup tapes. This will allow for restoration of data without requiring the live system to be overwritten. This is especially useful if old e-mail is subpoenaed. Since Novell GroupWise 6 and above allows for per-mailbox restoration, a GroupWise client would access this server to restore the mailbox. The entire post office would need to be restored to this server.
  2. Backup tapes should be restored periodically. This will serve as a spot-check of tape viability and will help the administration team establish time frames and procedures for disaster recovery plans.

Useful Tools

GroupWise Import/Export Utility

This utility is an add-on to ConsoleOne that enables you to transfer GroupWise information into and out of eDirectory.


Usage Information: