When restoring a Microsoft Exchange 2003 database, be sure an actual database file exists to restore to.  A restoration of the Exchange Information Store is not a file restore, so the files already need to be in place.  Beginning from scratch in a disaster recovery scenario, you will need to:

  • Install Exchange (since the Exchange installation directories should not be included as part of the file system restore)
  • Patch Exchange with the same Service Packs and Patches that were previously installed
  • Mount the Information Store (empty at the time) – this will create the necessary empty databases
  • Dismount the Information Store (and set it to be able to overwritten by a restore procedure)
  • Run the recovery of the information store
If all goes well, your Exchange installation should be back and running.