Microsoft rushes fix for Exchange ‘year 2022’ bug that blocks email

Some Microsoft Exchange admins coming to work today may be facing their first challenge of the new year: Installing a patch to fix jammed messages that started at midnight on January 1st.

The bug in on-premises versions of Exchange Server 2016 and Exchange Server 2019. causes messages to be stuck in transport queues, Microsoft said. It’s described as a latent date issue in a signature file used by the malware scanning engine within Exchange Server.

“The problem relates to a date check failure with the change of the new year and it not a failure of the AV engine itself,” Microsoft said. “This is not an issue with malware scanning or the malware engine, and it is not a security-related issue. The version checking performed against the signature file is causing the malware engine to crash, resulting in messages being stuck in transport queues.”

When the issue occurs there will be errors in the Application event log on the Exchange Server. The error message will read “The FIP-FS “Microsoft” Scan Engine failed to load. PID: 23092, Error Code: 0x80004005. Error Description: Can’t convert “2201010001” to long.”

Screen capture of error messages in Microsoft Exchange
Image from Microsoft

The fix can be downloaded here: . Microsoft says that before running the script, admins should change the execution policy for PowerShell scripts by running Set-ExecutionPolicy -ExecutionPolicy RemoteSigned. Run the script on each Exchange mailbox server that downloads antimalware updates in your organization (use elevated Exchange Management Shell). The script can also be installed manually.

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Howard Solomon
Howard Solomon
Currently a freelance writer, I'm the former editor of and Computing Canada. An IT journalist since 1997, I've written for several of ITWC's sister publications including and Computer Dealer News. Before that I was a staff reporter at the Calgary Herald and the Brampton (Ont.) Daily Times. I can be reached at hsolomon [@]

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