ENow Exchange & Office 365 Solutions Engine Blog (ESE)

What Does “Supported” Mean to Microsoft?

Posted by Nathan O'Bryan MVP, MCSM on Mar 27, 2017 2:16:17 PM

There are a few words Microsoft likes to use in several different situations. “Federated” is a great example of this. Federated can mean several different things in the Microsoft world, and it can sometimes be hard to tell what sort of “federation” you’re talking about.

“Supported” is another word Microsoft uses to mean different things in different situations, and what I’d like to talk about in this blog post.

Read More

Topics: Cloud, Exchange Support, Office 365, Microsoft, Office 2013

Exchange 2010 Site Disaster Recovery on a Shoestring! Part 2: Navigating the Failover Process

Posted by Lasse Pettersson on Sep 17, 2012 1:51:00 PM

 In Part 1 of this series I explained how to build a low cost site or datacenter disaster recovery solution using Microsoft Exchange’s new DAG feature. In this article, I will endeavor to explain what manual steps are required to failover to your other site in the event of a disaster.

First of all let’s discuss what types of problems can occur. There are a variety of problems that can happen ranging from simple disk failure to a tornado smashing the datacenter in the primary site. In this article, I would like to address how you would manually activate your backup Exchange server if your primary server’s mother board or disk failed. Next, I will outline the steps to take if you experience the dreaded total site failure. Finally, I will conclude with how to fail back to your primary site when everything returns to normal.


 OK, so how do we recover from for example a motherboard failure?

Read More

Topics: Exchange 2010, Exchange Support, Exchange Tips

Exchange Server 2010 Deployment Assistant

Posted by Ismail Mohammed on Jul 29, 2011 8:39:00 AM


Exchange Server 2010 Deployment Assistant

If you are considering upgrading to Microsoft Exchange 2010, you should really check out the Exchange server Deployment Assistant. This tool asks you a small set of questions that will help you determine what technical steps are required to make the transition.

What exactly does this tool accomplish? This tool can be used during the pre-deployment phase to ensure that you consider all prerequisites that are required to install Exchange 2010.

These include:

  • Active Directory Prerequisite concerns
  • Operating System Supported
  • Firewall Rules
  • Certificate Configurations
  • Server side prerequisites

I believe this tool is an advanced version of the Exchange 2003 setup.htm file. The Exchange 2003 setup.htm file was a server level html that helped you identify and complete the prerequisites for the installation of Exchange 2003. By using this tool, you are not only taking care of prerequisites on the server side but also Active Directory prerequisites plus additional configuration based on the Exchange Server Role including things like how to handle the Certificate configuration details. The primary advantage of this tool is that it saves you time so you do not have to read through 1000’s of pages to cross check the basic prerequisites and more over it will reduce the chance of human error.

Another beautiful thing about this tool is that you do not need to install it on your server. To check out this tool, please Click here

Read More

Topics: Exchange Migration, Exchange 2010, Exchange Support, Exchange Tips

The ESE Consultants’ Corner: Third Edition

Posted by Mahmoud Magdy on Jun 21, 2010 11:15:00 PM

Hello and welcome to the Third edition of the Consultants’ Corner.

In this edition, I will address some of the questions that have reached me through “I have heard that. . .” statements. Unfortunately, in our field some people are reluctant to admit they might not know the answer, and instead give false or misleading statements and opinions. In an effort to help you avoid being a victim to such misguided answers, I will share with you some common misconceptions that I have encountered with my own consulting clients.

I have heard that I can’t upgrade from Exchange 2007 to 2010 in place, and that the same is true for OS (I cannot upgrade from Windows 2008 SP2 to Windows 2008 R2.) Is this true?

The first part is correct, but the second part is only partially correct. Some applications, like Exchange, do not support in place OS upgrade, so you must bring in new hardware, install the new OS on it, and shift the application from the OLD system to the NEW system. Other applications support in-place OS upgrades, such as Domain Controllers and file servers.You must know the application being used, and always check its supportability for in-place OS upgrades. Be cautious as some people get confused between the Exchange OS upgrade statement and the general in-place upgrade statement.

I have heard that I cannot use my SAN as a storage device with Exchange 2010, but I have invested a lot in the SAN. What should I do?

The new Exchange 2010 Architecture makes Exchange 2010 deployment possible on SATA-II disks. However, that does not mean that Exchange 2010 will not benefit from the SAN performance edge. You can still use the SAN and benefit from it.

I have heard that we need the FSW when we deploy a DAG. I am planning to deploy 3 node DAG clusters, but where should I place the FSW?

You do not need the FSW if you deploy an odd number of cluster nodes since with an odd number you can have the majority. The FSW is required for even number of nodes since you might get an equal number of nodes in each site and thus will not be able to form majority which will cause the cluster to fail. DAGs uses the MNS (Majority Node Set) quorum model so when the cluster node can form majority, they can start the cluster service.

I have heard that Exchange 2007 and 2010 introduce database portability, so instead of moving mailboxes can I copy the EDB file, import to an Exchange 2010 mailbox server and then be done?

DB portability is a nice feature that enables you to move EDB files between servers in case of failure and import them to a new server on different HW, but this can’t be done between different versions of Exchange. Thus, EDB files from Exchange 2007 must be imported to an Exchange 2007 server. You cannot import them to an Exchange 2010 server.

I have heard that I need to buy special hardware to load balance my Internet connectivity as well as my WAN connectivity. However, I cannot afford those fancy boxes. What I can do instead?

There are some simple tricks that you can use to load balance or failover in case of internet or WAN connectivity problems.

For load balance, you can use TMG 2010 and the built-in ISP redundancy to provide HA and NLB for the network connection. If you load balance internet using other methods then prepare the cash!

For HA there is a simple trick: either use TMG 2010, or configure your router or Firewall (whatever the routing device is) to have 2 static routes with different priority. Make the lowest priority your primary link in case the primary link drops, then the device will use the backup route. This is a simple yet effective option.

I hope these answers helped clarify any misleading statements you may have encountered. If you are not sure about something or have a technical question that has you stumped, let me know! Email your questions to ESE@ENowinc.com.

Make sure you catch my next article where I will share with you some cool Exchange 2010 SP1 features.

Until then, wishing you the best uptimes and the fastest Exchange servers.


Read More

Topics: Exchange 2010, Exchange Support, Exchange Tips

ESE Consultants’ Corner: Second Edition

Posted by Mahmoud Magdy on May 24, 2010 11:17:00 PM

We want to hear more from you! What challenges are you facing in your environment? Do you have an advanced technical issue you need help solving? We are here to help!Submit your questions any time by emailing them to: ese@enowconsulting.com.

Without further ado, let us get started:

Q. We would like to have a single Exchange 2010 DAG located in 2 Data Centers and be able to provide Active Mailbox services from both Data Centers. Is this possible?

Read More

Topics: Exchange 2010, Exchange Support, Exchange Tips

All for one and one for all: The key to a successful Office Communications Server Deployment

Posted by Mahmoud Magdy on Mar 29, 2010 11:32:00 PM

Exchange and OCS heavily rely on Certificates as a key element of secure infrastructure deployment by using MTLS and TLS. The challenge is that implementing the certificate is confusing and comes with a price.

In this post we will investigate how to overcome these challenges and how you can use a single certificate for our Exchange/OCS deployment. Let us cut to the chase and go to the cool stuff.

Exchange and SSL — an old story I have to tell:
Exchange started using SSL certificates when Exchange 2003 was introduced. At that time things were simple. To implement the certificate, all you had to do was create a certificate with a single name, for example (mail.domain.com), where it resolved to the External IP that was Nat’d to the Front End Server IP or Virtual IP if you were using several FEs.

Read More

Topics: Office Communications Server R2, Exchange Support, Exchange Tips

Understanding Exchange 2010 Storage Architecture: Part 3

Posted by Mahmoud Magdy on Mar 1, 2010 11:27:00 PM

In Part 1 of this series, we reviewed the Microsoft’s ESE (Extensible Storage Engine), and discussed the new storage enhancements that were introduced in Exchange 2010.

In Part 2, we continued our journey through the Exchange 2010 storage enhancements by exploring the concepts of logical and physical changes to the Microsoft ESE database.

In the final part of this series, we are going to explore some very clever changes Microsoft has made that significantly improves system performance. In this article we are going to take a look at the following areas:

- Read/write Coalescing and page compression
- Cache compression
- Online maintenance

Read More

Topics: Exchange 2010, Exchange Support, Exchange Tips, Exchange Information Stores

Things that can be missed in Exchange 2007 migration planning…

Posted by Jay Gundotra on Aug 29, 2008 11:10:00 PM

Saturday, August 30th, 2008
Read More

Topics: Exchange 2007, Exchange Migration, Exchange Support, Exchange Tips

Gain visibility into your Office 365 Deployment

See why monitoring makes sense in a cloudy world.