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  • Adding 2nd server

    I work in an environment with 800+ users and one Exchange 2003 Enterprise server with one store. The store is up over 250gb in size and has been experiencing issues. A few weeks back the store service was taking 100% cpu and hanging. I brought the server down for a weekend to run eseutil and isinteg. Eseutil bombed at 12% and I was able to let isinteg run for about 50% before the maintenance window (62hr window) had expired and I had to bring the server back online. ISInteg found and repaired some issues during the "folders" test, but we were unable to complete the entire process. Server did come back up and was functioning better, cpu usage was back down, but some users are still experiencing some quirks.

    That being said - we are not ready to migrate to 2010 just yet, so the decision was made to bring up a 2nd 2003 server, split the store up into 4 stores and migrate all the users.

    I have installed Exchange Enterprise 2003 on the new server(ServerB) (after running all the pre-reqs like domain prep, forest prep, etc.). I created my new stores, replicated my public folders and should be ready to migrate accounts.

    I migrated my first account - and found that email would bounce being sent to that account. Also, that account is no longer accessible via active sync or OWA.

    I thought it was a connector issue so I tried making an SMTP connector to route all emails from ServerB to ServerA. All external emails for all users stopped working.

    I finally found a smarthost setting on ServerA under SMTP Virtual Server that points to our external mail host. I setup the SMTP Virtual Server on ServerB smarthost to point to ServerA and was able to send/receive emails on the test account on ServerB.

    I then migrated my email account as another test. Some emails came thru initially, but then no emails transferred either internal or external. I also could not access ActiveSync on my phone and OWA gives me a cert error.

    Other users who tried to email me received delayed transmition notification. When I checked the queue on ServerA - there is an SMTP Virtual connection the ServerB with 8 messages in the queue that are not routing thru.

    I moved my mailbox back to ServerA so that I can receive emails again.

    I found a blog article that stated if you use the Smarthost under the SMTP Virtual Server that it only works with ONE exchange server and if you bring on a Second ExchSvr routing between the hosts will have problems. Recommendation is to create an SMTP connector

    I again tried creating an SMTP connector and All external emails began bouncing.

    What am I doing wrong here. Every article I've read makes it seem as if all you do is install the server and it starts working. Last time I added an Exchange server was about 7 years ago at prior employment in an environment that already had over a dozen exchange servers. Setting up the connectors was easy, I had references to look at.

  • #2
    Re: Adding 2nd server

    What a mess.
    DO NOT put a smart host on the SMTP Virtual Server. Remove it. If you need to use a smart host, set it on an SMTP Connector.
    It doesn't matter what you read elsewhere, particularly from antispam providers who tell you otherwise, that is the ONLY way you should use a smart host with Exchange.
    You need to ensure that the SMTP virtual server is at the default, so no authentication settings are configured (anonymous rather than a username), restrictions etc.

    Why did you bother with an offline defrag? If you have Enterprise edition then you have four storage groups with four databases in each storage group. Therefore just create a new database and move the users. Zero risk, zero downtime. Offline defrag is not risk free.

    If you add a second Exchange server then you will have issues with remote access. Exchange 2003 doesn't proxy to the other server, so the second server must be directly exposed to the internet. That means its own host name, SSL certificate, IP address etc. You also must know the address of the server that your mailbox is on. ActiveSync users will not be redirected etc.

    The way round this is a third server, running Exchange 2003 standard edition which is configured as a front end server. You can then point all external traffic at that server and it doesn't matter which server the mailbox is on.

    Simon.
    --
    Simon Butler
    Exchange MVP

    Blog: http://blog.sembee.co.uk/
    More Exchange Content: http://exchange.sembee.info/
    Exchange Resources List: http://exbpa.com/
    In the UK? Hire me: http://www.sembee.co.uk/

    Sembee is a registered trademark, used here with permission.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Adding 2nd server

      thank you Simon, For the record - I did not config the smarthost on the virtual server - that was done prior to my employment. Believe me - took me a while to find it too when I setup the new server. As far as i know, that was carried over from Exchange 5.5 and the entire setup was done by some outside consulting company that is know longer around.


      Blackberry connections have transfered over nicely for the one test user I have migrated over. OWA still works for our original FQDN. I was getting a cert error yesterday, but not today after I've setup the SMTP connector. The only thing I haven't been able to do is Active Sync.


      In previous employment environment, I had over a dozen exchange servers, with the master being at corporate - but I do not recall anyone being a front end exchange. We never had problems routing, OWA or external access. Although we used BES and blackberries and did not allow Active Sync connections.

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      • #4
        Re: Adding 2nd server

        If you had a dozen servers then either every server was exposed to the internet with its own URL and the user knew which server to connect to, or you had a frontend server. That is how Exchange 2003 would work.

        If the user connected to the wrong server (that wasn't a frontend) then they would be redirected to the correct server. This redirection though would be to the server's real address. Therefore it would only work on the internet if the server's real address resolved, which is often not the case.

        Simon.
        --
        Simon Butler
        Exchange MVP

        Blog: http://blog.sembee.co.uk/
        More Exchange Content: http://exchange.sembee.info/
        Exchange Resources List: http://exbpa.com/
        In the UK? Hire me: http://www.sembee.co.uk/

        Sembee is a registered trademark, used here with permission.

        Comment

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