How to Resolve Exchange Dirty Shutdown Error – 550 JET_errDatabaseDirtyShutdown

Srishty | February 28th, 2017 | Tips

Exchange Server in combination with MS Outlook is used by most of the organizations in order to have a smooth and effective business communication. It is because it provides a high level of flexibility and ease to its users to manage Outlook mailbox information in a much better way. If a user wants that Exchange Server start cleanly without any issue then, the database must be detached (means transaction log is to be committed properly) to the transaction log files. If it is not shut down properly then, it may cause error-550 JET errDatabaseDirtyShutdown. It is the error that can badly affect the Exchange log files. Thus, it becomes necessary for a user to resolve Exchange dirty shutdown error.

Exchange Recovery Tool

What is Transaction Log File?

The main factor due to which Exchange dirty shutdown error occurs is transaction log files. However, it is an asset, which is required to restore the database from an older version. Therefore, it always advised to the Exchange administrators that not to delete any log files permanently. Transaction log keeps records of each major and minor change done in Exchange database. Each new information and data that is added to the mailbox if first written in log files and then into the database. Moreover, a numbering is given to the log files in a sequence that clear users that a new log is generated in a much better way.

What is dirty shutdown?

A JET engine is used to designed the Exchange Server database in which the main responsibility is given to the log files to maintain a constant record of input and output operations in the Exchange Database files. There is some situation in which the log files are loaded into the cache memory before being committed to the Information Store. It marks a JET engine as DIRTY. In addition, if a system is a shutdown in this condition accidentally or intentionally then, it displays Exchange dirty shutdown error.


Reasons for Dirty Shutdown

To prevent error- 550 JET_errDatabaseDirtyShutdown, it is necessary for a user to shut down the database in an appropriate way. 2

To have a complete understanding of the Exchange Log files state let us discuss more it. A user has to be sure that data in the transaction log must be committed to database files. However, as soon as the server starts, it first checks the state of the database. If it is is in attached state i.e. log files are not committed to the database, then it must be in a dirty shutdown state. Therefore, it is necessary to detach the log files from the database in order to have a green signal for a clean and smooth shutdown.

How to Verify Exchange Log Files State?

To verify if it is a smooth or dirty shutdown state and examining the state value of Exchange database, a user needs to run the command given below:

  • Go to Start button and open Run Window
  • After that type cmd in the text box and press Enter key
  • Now, a command for the Public folder is:


  • For Private folders, run the following command:


  • A database is detached correctly if State= Clean Shutdown


  • Some transactions need to be committed to the database if State= Dirty Shutdown


Methods to Resolve Exchange Dirty Shutdown Error

Depending on the situation and state of the log file, a method to fix dirty shutdown error is used. Hence, in this segment different solutions to resolve Error -550 JET_errDatabaseDirtyShutdown are discussed.

  • If Log files are in Clean State

When the log files of Exchange Server is in clean state and user still facing this error, then there is a need to perform a soft recovery. However, to perform Soft recovery, a user can use Exchange Storage Engine Utility (commonly known as ESEUTIL). It is an executable through which a user can repair, defragmentation, integrity check, and other operations on Exchange database when it is in offline mode. If a user wants to perform soft recovery it is necessary to make sure that log files are not in a damaged state. To verify this, type “Eseutil /ml “Path of the log files\log_prefix” in cmd.


Soft Recovery Syntax:

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Soft Recovery Process:


  • If Log File is Missing

Another possible cause due to which Exchange dirty shutdown error occurs is that the log files are not in a clean slate and can be fixed only through the hard recovery of the database. The process is also similar to soft recovery, the only difference transaction. It is similar to soft recovery with the only difference that the transaction log is repeated back by restoring the database from online backup.

A user can easily restore database files such as .edb and .stm and transactions logs if a valid database backup is available. After restoration, restore.env is created at temporary folder ‘C:\Temp’.


Restore.env file:


A user is always suggested to make a copy of folder containing log files and restore.env folder because there are chances that data might get lost during hard recovery.

To perform a hard repair, execute the command is given below: ‘Eseutil /cc “Path of the restore.env containing folder11’ Hard Repair Process: 13

After that, go to the location of the restore.env file and that is empty.

  • If there is no Valid Backup

In a case of no valid backup or no log files available, then a user needs to open a command prompt and execute the command given below: eseutil /p <database_name11> A message is displayed on the screen, a user needs to click on OK button 14 After that, the recovery process gets started: 15

When recovery is complete, a user needs to run\mh switch again to check the consistency of the database. It must be a Clean Shutdown. After trying all the method above, if a user still encounters error-550JET_errDatabaseDirtyShutdown then, can recover corrupt Exchange database using SysTools Exchange Recovery Tool. By performing the above steps a user can easily resolve Exchange dirty shutdown error. Download utility from the below button:


Exchange Server is widely used in email-based communication. But there are some situations in which a user face Exchange dirty shutdown error. Therefore, after understanding the exact reason behind the error-550JET_errDatabaseDirtyShutdown, we have discussed various solutions to fix it. Depending upon the situations, methods have been discussed, a user can choose between them according to resolve Exchange Dirty Shutdown Error -550 JET_errDatabaseDirtyShutdown.