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Runaway growth of Activity Pointer Base Table

Runaway growth of Activity Pointer Base Table

Recently I had a customer that had a runaway data increase of their Activity Pointer Base table. It would grow about 4-5GB each weekend. We looked for the usual suspects such as inline images, amount of email being sent on the weekend, and nothing really seemed to stick out. I started doing email counts and noticed that the training environment wasn’t even receiving or sending email on the weekends, but was still showing growing storage usage. This led us to believe that there was an index at work here. I searched online and this was suggested by others, but no one could figure out why their index was growing out of control. We needed a method for taming runaway growth of Activity Pointer Base Table data, and so we went to the source...

Indexes and Descriptions

We opened a case with Microsoft I found out that if you put a Description field for an Activity into a column view you can get this very situation to happen. Each time that ndx_ ATuneActivityTypeCode index runs it will grab the full body of the Email messages and include that in the index, every week.

So, the way to fix this is first look at any Activity views and remove the description field from any view columns. Email is affected by this the most. Then you will need to open a case with Microsoft letting them know you found Description fields in your view columns, and they will need to run a mitigation script against the ndx_ ATuneActivityTypeCode index. It can take a few days for the indexes to be rebuilt but once they are you will see the data come back down in size. In my customer’s case we shed nearly 80GB of data total from two environments.

Looking all over the internet and finding little on this topic I found it important to share with everyone. If you have a runaway Activity Pointer Base table and even after fixing indexes you see growth, a rogue Description field in your View columns might be what is causing the issue. I hope this article helps you save time on troubleshooting your activity data usage.

Dynamics 365 storage usage too high and indexes aren't the cause? See our previous blog post reviewing other methods for Reducing Microsoft Dynamics 365 Storage Costs.

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Rob is the CTO of Beringer Technology Group, and focuses his efforts on software development, cloud engineering, team mentoring and strategic technical direction. Rob has worked with Beringer since 2005, and has influenced every department from Development, Security, Implementation, Support and Sales. Rob graduated with his MBA from Rowan University in 2012, earned his Bachelors of Computer Science in 1997, and is current with several Microsoft technical certifications. Rob is very active, and loves to mountain bike, weight train, cook and hike with his dog pack.