Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Troubleshooting Basics in Exchange Server 2010

One of the primary responsibilities of Exchange Administrator is to ensure proper flow and recoverability of message data. This can only be achieved with few administration tasks instead of doing maintenance, monitoring and queue tracking in case of failure. It is better to monitor if services and processes are functioning normally or not, rather than disaster to happens and then troubleshoot.
Few administration tasks are more important than maintenance, monitoring, and queue tracking. You must maintain Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 to ensure proper flow and recoverability of message data. You need to monitor Exchange Server to ensure that services and processes are functioning normally, and you need to track Exchange Server queues to ensure that messages are being processed.
We can find several tools in the Exchange Management Console to troubleshoot messaging problems. These tools include:-
1. Mailflow Troubleshooter can help us in troubleshooting message delivery delays, non-delivery reports, problems with Edge Transport server synchronization. We can also find the lost messages from this tool.
2. Performance Troubleshooter helps in troubleshooting performance issues related to delays while using Office Outlook and Remote Procedure Call (RPC) dialog box appearing frequently in Microsoft Outlook.
Following power shell cmdlets can be used to obtain detailed information about current configuration of the Exchange Server:-
· Get-TransportServer command displays configuration details for servers with the Hub Transport Server or Edge Transport server role
· Get-UMServer command displays configuration details for servers with the Unified Messaging server role
· Get-ExchangeServer command displays the general configuration details for Exchange servers
· Get-ClientAccessServer command displays configuration details for servers with the Client Access server role
· Get-MailboxServer command displays configuration details for servers with the Mailbox server role
We can also use the Exchange Best Practices Analyzer(ExBPA) tool to gather and check Exchange configuration information. ExPBA tools scan lots of things like:-
· Permissions check Exchange BPA performs a health check and then samples the performance for over a 2-hour period.
· Organizational health check Exchange BPA performs a full scan of the organization, checking for errors, warnings, non default configurations, recent changes, and other configuration details.
· Baseline configuration checks Exchange BPA checks for configuration settings that turn from baseline values. This allows you to compare the settings on a baseline server with settings on other servers and report the differences.
· Connectivity tests Exchange BPA tests network connections and permissions on each Exchange server.
Other useful cmdlets for checking the Exchange organization include:
· Test-ActiveSyncConnectivity Performs a full synchronization against a specified mailbox to test the configuration of Exchange ActiveSync.
· Test-EcpConnectivity Verifies that the Exchange Control Panel is running as expected.
· Test-EdgeSynchronization Verifies that the subscribed Edge Transport servers have a current and accurate synchronization status.
· Test-ExchangeSearch Verifies that Exchange Search is currently enabled and is indexing new e-mail messages in a timely manner.
· Test-FederationTrust Verifies that the federation trust is properly configured and functioning as expected.
· Test-FederationTrustCertificate Verifies the status of certificates used for federation on all Hub Transport and Client Access servers.
· Test-ImapConnectivity Verifies that the IMAP4 service is running as expected.
· Test-IPAllowListProvider Verifies the configuration for a specific IP allow list provider.
· Test-IPBlockListProvider Verifies the configuration for a specific IP block list provider.
· Test-IRMConfiguration Verifies Information Rights Management (IRM) configuration and functionality.
· Test-Mailflow Verifies whether mail can be successfully sent from and delivered to the system mailbox as well as whether e-mail is sent between Mailbox servers within a defined latency threshold.
· Test-MapiConnectivity Verifies server functionality by logging on to the mailbox that you specify.
· Test-MRSHealth Verifies the health of an instance of the Microsoft Exchange Mailbox Replication Service.
· Test-OutlookConnectivity Verifies end-to-end Microsoft Outlook client connectivity and also tests for Outlook Anywhere (RPC/HTTP) and TCP-based connections.
· Test-OutlookWebServices Verifies the Autodiscover service settings for Outlook.
· Test-OwaConnectivity Verifies that Outlook Web App is running as expected.
· Test-PopConnectivity Verifies that the POP3 service is running as expected.
· Test-PowerShellConnectivity Verifies whether Windows PowerShell remoting on the target Client Access server is functioning correctly.
· Test-ReplicationHealth Verifies all aspects of the replication and replay status for a Mailbox server in a database availability group.
· Test-SenderId Verifies whether a specified IP address is the legitimate sending address for a specified SMTP address.
· Test-ServiceHealth Verifies whether all the Windows services that Exchange requires on a server have started.
· Test-SystemHealth Collects data about your Exchange system and analyzes it.
· Test-UMConnectivity Verifies the operation of a computer that has the Unified Messaging server role installed.
· Test-WebServicesConnectivity Verifies the functionality of Exchange Web Services.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

What’s New in Exchange Server 2013 (Preview)

Server Roles:
In earlier version of Exchange Server like Exchange 2007 and Exchange 2010 used have 5 server roles. But Exchange 2013 preview only has 2 server roles they are mailbox server role and Client Access Server role.
Mailbox Server Role: The Mailbox server includes all the traditional server components found in Exchange 2010: the Client Access protocols, Hub Transport service, Mailbox databases, and Unified Messaging. The Mailbox server handles all activity for a given mailbox.
Client Access Server Role: The Client Access server provides authentication, redirection, and proxy services. The Client Access server itself doesn’t do any data rendering. The Client Access server is a thin and stateless server. There is never anything queued or stored on the Client Access server. The Client Access server offers all the usual client access protocols: HTTP, POP and IMAP, and SMTP.
What happened to Hub Transport Server and Unified Messaging Server role in Exchange Server 2013?
Functionality of the Hub Transport Server and Unified Messaging Server are still available but the Hub Transport Server and Unified messaging server role components distributed to Mailbox and client access server roles.
Management Tools:
In exchange server 2010, we have the management tools like Exchange Management console, Exchange Control Panel and Exchange Management Shell, but in Exchange 2013 Preview, we have a brand new management console named Exchange Administration Center and Exchange Management Shell.
Exchange Administration Center: It’s a Unified Management Console which replaces the legacy exchange management console and the Exchange control panel. This is similar to administration centre available in Windows 2012.
Exchange Management Shell: Lot of new shell commands are introduced based on the new option, for example we have an option to take mailbox report etc.
High Availability:
High Availability for Mailbox databases will continue to use the same Database Availability Group which is available in Exchange Server 2010. There are no major changes in the DAG with Exchange Server 2013 preview. The rewritten to code of transactional logs and exchange managed Store make the failover faster.
Messaging policy and compliance
Exchange 2013 preview has a new feature named Data Loss Prevention which helps to protect sensitive date and inform users of compliance policies. Data Loss Prevention will do the functions same like Mail Tips.
Archiving Retention and E Discovery:
In place hold allow an option to place a query based hold or litigation hold and In-place e discovery allows you to search and preserve data across multiple data repositories, this allows the ability to perform In-place Ediscovery search across exchange, SharePoint 2013 preview and Lync 2013 preview. Ability to Searching the mailbox and archive mailbox from OWA and users can apply personal tags to default folders from OWA.
Transport Rules:
Transport rules in Exchange 2013 preview is similar to exchange 2010 transport rules and having few additional options on the transport rule predicates and actions.
Mail Flow:
Mail flow in exchange 2013 has a new architecture made up of several different services: the Front End Transport service on Client Access servers, the Hub Transport service on Mailbox servers, and the Mailbox Transport service on Mailbox servers.
Self-Signed certificate:
Mailbox Server will have a default self-signed certificate and this will be automatically trusted by the client access server in exchange server 2013 preview which will avoid the certificate warning on the clients.
Public Folders:
The public folder architecture uses specially designed mailboxes to store both the hierarchy and the public folder content. This new design also means that there is no longer a public folder database. Public folder replication now uses the continuous replication model.
Site Mailbox:
Site mailboxes improve collaboration and user productivity by allowing access to both documents in a SharePoint site and email messages in an Exchange mailbox, using the same client interface.
Unsupported Configuration:
Exchange 2003 cannot be supported in a coexistence environment. Exchange 2013 preview Mailboxes can be accessed via the client like outlook 2007 SP3, Outlook 2010 SP1 and Outlook 2013 preview.

For more :

Monday, July 23, 2012

Exchange Server 2007 KB articles, fixes and updates - June 2012

·         952583 Japanese DBCS characters are corrupted when you reply to a message or forward a message in an Exchange Server 2007 SP1, Exchange Server 2010, or Exchange Server 2010 SP1 environment  
·         931742 You cannot configure Integrated Windows (NTLM) authentication on a Send connector in Exchange 2007
·          2678030 Information about the Calendar Checking Tool for Outlook (CalCheck)

Exchange Server 2010 KB articles, fixes and updates - June 2012

·         2698976 Managed Folder Assistant does not process a mailbox that has external contacts in another tenant organization in an Exchange Server 2010 environment  
·         2685289 Description of Update Rollup 3 for Exchange Server 2010 Service Pack 2