Cisco Unity

How to Free Unused Hard Disk Space in a Microsoft Exchange Database

Document ID: 100607

Updated: Feb 12, 2008



The Cisco Unity data store includes several databases, voice mail boxes, and their corresponding transaction log files. This document explains how to free up unused space in the Microsoft Exchange database after you remove outdated voicemails. Follow this procedure if the database shrink does not return much disk space.



Cisco recommends that you have knowledge of these topics:

  • Cisco Unity

  • Microsoft Exchange Server

Components Used

The information in this document is based on these software and hardware versions:

  • Cisco Unity 4.0

  • Microsoft Exchange 2000 Server

The information in this document was created from the devices in a specific lab environment. All of the devices used in this document started with a cleared (default) configuration. If your network is live, make sure that you understand the potential impact of any command.


Refer to Cisco Technical Tips Conventions for more information on document conventions.


Cisco Unity hard disk space is full and does not free up much space after you delete outdated voicemails and shrink the database.


The Microsoft Exchange database files (or EDB files) includes unused space in the hard disk between the database files and voicemails that is not freed even though the voicemails are deleted. Use the Eseutil utility in order to free up this space and reduce the size of the database.

The defragmentation of the disk space makes used storage contiguous, eliminates unused storage, and reduces the size of the database. You can use the Eseutil utility in order to defragment the information store and directory in Exchange Server 5.5, Exchange 2000 and 2003 Server. Eseutil examines the structure of the database tables and records (which can include reading, scanning, repairing, and defragmenting the low level of the database).


Eseutil is located in the Winnt\System32 folder in Exchange Server 5.5 and in the Exchsrvr\Bin folder in Exchange 2000 and 2003. The utility can be run on one database at a time from the command line. Eseutil copies database records to a new database. When defragmention is complete, the original database is deleted or saved to a user-specified location, and the new version is renamed as the original.

Note: Defragmenting a database requires free disk space equal to 110 percent of the size of the database that you want to process. Make sure you backup the database files before you run eseutil on the Exchange server. A detailed procedure for how to run the eseutil is documented in Microsoft Knowledge Base Article 192185

Shrink the Cisco Unity Database

In situations where transaction log files for these databases grow over 1 GB in size and have filled the drive space, you can shrink the Cisco Unity database (UnityDB/ReportDB) in order to free up disk space. Refer to Shrink the Cisco Unity Database Configuration Example for information on how to shrink the Cisco Unity databases.

Related Information

Updated: Feb 12, 2008
Document ID: 100607