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  • Distribution list of users NOT on the system?

    Hi all,

    I work for a small town. We use Exchange 2003. I am by no means an Exchange guru, so I thought I'd ask a few!

    We have 242 "Town Meeting Members". These are citizens that are elected to a voting body and twice a year they come to vote on Town business. None of these people work for the town, nor do any of them have town emails or logins.

    However, we do need to communicate with them as effectively as possible. Is there a way to put them all in Exchange in a Distribution list so that our Town Clerk could email them all with a simple single name? If so, can someone tell me how?

    That'd be quite helpful. Thanks!

  • #2
    Re: Distribution list of users NOT on the system?

    Sure. Create Contacts for each of the Town Meeting members, create a Distribution Group, add the Contacts to the Distribution Group, done.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Distribution list of users NOT on the system?

      Nice, I'll give it a try.

      Is there a way to restrict who can send an email to this group? I know I can hide it from the GAL and tell only those who need to know, but that doesn't prevent either an accident or someone stumbling onto it somehow.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Distribution list of users NOT on the system?

        OK, just created a test contact with what I think is success. I did have to create an Exchange mailbox and a custom SMTP address during the process. Does this affect need for additional CALs?

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Distribution list of users NOT on the system?

          No, you shouldn't have created a mailbox. A Contact is an external email address that allows you to send email to external people who don't have mailboxes on your Exchange server. A Contact facilitates having your users be able to email external recipients from your Exchange Address Book without needing to have every user keep a copy of the same Contacts. A Contact is essentially an external recipient who has an entry in your Exchange Address Book.

          When you create a Contact the wizard has a checkbox "Create an Exchange e-mail address", the checkbox is checked by default. You then click the Modify button to create an SMTP address, this is the external email address for the user.

          If this is what you did then you haven't created a mailbox. Can you post a screenshot of the object you created?

          On the properties pages of the Distribution Group, on the "Exchange General" properties tab you can restrict who can send email to the Distribution Group.
          Last edited by joeqwerty; 18th January 2013, 04:47.

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          • #6
            Re: Distribution list of users NOT on the system?

            Hi Joe,

            OK, what you said is what I did. So I guess I did NOT, after all, create a mailbox. So I basically now just have to create the 242 contacts (yippee!), hide them all, restrict who can email them, then do the same for the DL I create... Sound right?

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            • #7
              Re: Distribution list of users NOT on the system?

              Yep, sounds right. If you hide all of the Contacts from the Address Book then you only need to restrict the Distribution Group. Since the Contacts will be hidden you don't need to restrict them individually.

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              • #8
                Re: Distribution list of users NOT on the system?

                Awesome. And last questions... Is there any problem having this many contacts in a single DL? Will the emails sent to the DL go through OK?

                And there are quite a few of these people whose email addresses we don't yet have. If I put them into the system as contacts, without email addresses, and put them into the DL just in case we ever do get their addresses, will that screw anything up or will Exchange just ignore the lack or address?
                Last edited by WorldBuilder; 18th January 2013, 21:06.

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                • #9
                  Re: Distribution list of users NOT on the system?

                  Just to give an alternative view, I wouldn't have bothered with using Exchange for this. Large numbers of contacts are just messy and require permissions to admin and generally will cause a headache.

                  For this number of external users I would have just used the free tier of MailChimp. Close off subscriptions so that you can manage it. You can then hand over management of the email addresses to someone else and not have all of those contacts in Exchange. No pollution of the GAL, no mess.

                  30 minutes, all done.

                  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


                  • #10
                    Re: Distribution list of users NOT on the system?

                    Sembee,

                    Never heard of it prior to your mention. Looks cool, and I'm happy to know of it now. Thanks!

                    Joe,

                    OK, I've put in each and every contact. I've created the DL. I went to New --> Group and set it to Distribution and Global and did NOT check "create an Exchange mailbox". Added all the contacts to the group. Now I just have to restrict who can send to it.

                    Sound right to you?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Distribution list of users NOT on the system?

                      That will work but if you want the DG to show up in the GAL you'll need to create an email address for it through the right click Exchange tasks menu. This isn't strictly neccessary but if you don't then whomever sends an email to the DG will need to know the email address of the group that is shown on the General tab of the DG properties in order to send an email to the DG.

                      Personally I would find it less confusing to just go ahead and create an email address for the DG (so that it shows up in the GAL and so that you don't forget that it exists as a DG) and then just restrict who can send to the DG.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Distribution list of users NOT on the system?

                        Hi Joe,

                        OK, you make a good point. I created an Exchange mailbox for the group. On the Exchange General tab, under Message Restrictions, I selected Accept Messages "Only From". I selected 5 people.

                        So I am assuming that this means that only those 5 people can email this group.

                        But what I'm wondering is how to test this, other than to try to send it an email from an address other than the 5 I selected. What will happen if I try this? Will I get a return message of some kind saying that I'm not permitted?

                        Continued thanks!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Distribution list of users NOT on the system?

                          Yes, that's about right. Try sending an email to the group from a user who isn't permitted. You should get an NDR to the effect that you don't have permission to send to that recipient.

                          Also, make note that there is a difference between a "mail enabled" object and a "mailbox enabled" object.

                          A "mail enabled" object, like a DG, can receive email (the members of the DG receive email sent to the DG) but the DG itself doesn't have a mailbox. When you mail enable an object you're not neccessarily creating a mailbox for that object. As another example, the Contacts you created are mail enabled objects, meaning you can send email to those objects but the Contacts themselves do not have mailboxes.

                          In Contrast, a user that you create a mailbox for is a mailbox enabled object.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Distribution list of users NOT on the system?

                            Cool, just tried it from my GMail account: Failed!
                            This is an automatically generated Delivery Status Notification.

                            Delivery to the following recipients failed.

                            The [email protected]

                            Final-Recipient: rfc822;The [email protected]
                            Action: failed
                            Status: 5.7.1
                            X-Display-Name: Town Meeting Members
                            Odd that there wasn't anything about no permission, though, eh?

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Distribution list of users NOT on the system?

                              One more question about this (kinda)...

                              Do DGs require a CAL? If I have 160 users, I need 160 CALs. If I create 10 distribution groups, do I need to buy 10 CALs to stay legitimate?

                              Thanks!

                              Comment

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