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Troubleshooting email notifications has been a mysterious task for a lot of Backup Exec users. Many of us wonder how/where to start troubleshooting email notifications. 

Once email notifications are configured in Backup Exec and enabled in Job properties, they either work or don't work. You only come to know there's some problem with the Email notifications when if fails to deliver email messages.

This article shows how to troubleshoot issues with already configured Email Notifications which fail to trigger/deliver emails.

Before you start troubleshooting check all the following:

  • Ensure Email and Text Notification (Email and Pager Notifications for Backup Exec 2010 R3 and earlier) is configured with valid information.
  • Ensure Notification Recipients (Recipients for Backup Exec 2010 R3 and earlier) are properly added and settings configured.
  • Ensure Alert Categories are configured to enable notifications for the desired alert types.
  • Go to the backup job properties to ensure desired Recipients are selected to receive email notifications.

For more information on how to configure email notifications see:

If Backup Exec fails to send email notifications after all the above settings and configurations are confirmed, following is the best way to troubleshoot email notifications.


Step-by-Step instructions on how to troubleshoot email notifications:

A. Start SGmon (live debugging monitor):

  1. On your Backup Exec media server browse to X:\Program Files\Symantec\Backup Exec\ 
    Note: 'X' is the drive letter on which Backup Exec application is installed.
  2. Locate and Run SGMon.exe
  3. Check the following boxes in SGmon and keep it running in the background:
  • Job Engine, RAWS, Agent Browser
  • Backup Exec Server
  • Capture to file
  1. Come back to Backup Exec console.

B. Send a test notifications or run a test job with email notification configured.

  1. To send a test notification:
  • For Backup Exec 2012:
    - Click on Backup Exec button
    - Configuration and Settings > Alerts and Notifications > Notification Recipients
    - Select the Recipient name and click on Edit
    - Click on "Send test email" button.
    - Click Ok to exit out of the Recipient Properties
    - Check and confirm if the test email is received.
  • For Backup Exec 2010 R3 and prior:
    - Go to Tools - Recipients
    - Select the Recipient name and click Properties
    - Click on "Test"
    - Click Ok to exit out of the Recipient properties.
    - Check and confirm if the test email is delivered.
  1. If the test email is not delivered, review the SGmon log for notification related errors.
  • Go to SGmon window
  • Click on the Save button and save the log on your Desktop.
  • Open the SGmon.log file with Notepad (or any preferred text editor)
  • Search for "Notify Return Code" using Ctrl+F
  • Note down the Notify Return Code error.

C. Search for a valid solution using SymWISE (Symantec's Knowledge Base):

  1. Go to the following link:
    Backup Exec Support Landing Page -
  2. Enter the Notify Return Code (with double-quotes) in the search box and search.


  3. Review the articles returned in the Search Results and attempt the Solution mentioned in them to resolve your issue.

Really helpful! Thanks for sharing...