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Email Continuity

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  • Email Continuity

    Hi guys,

    I was wondering if anyone had a good way that used for redirecting email to a different service what an email server was down? I know there are products like MXLogic and Postini which offer place for email to be stored while the exchange server is down but I have heard of a way of doing this (or something similar) with some changes to the MX records and adding mailbox accounts on a webhost.

    Any guidence would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

  • #2
    Re: Email Continuity

    You can't deliver email to two locations at once.
    Therefore while you can change MX records to point to another location, you would have to wait for that DNS change to be seen by the Internet, then you have the problem of getting that email back in to the live system once it is back up and running.
    For a few hours down time you could be looking at a week of disruption before all email is where it should be.
    You would also need to maintain the second system, with user accounts configured etc so that email doesn't bounce.

    There is no easy way of doing so unless you use a service like Postini etc who can store and forward the email, or you have a second Exchange server in a second location.

    This is really a business decision though, that cannot be taken in isolation. It needs to be part of an overall business disaster recovery plan, which strict parameters on when it is put in to use.

    Simon Butler
    Exchange MVP

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    • #3
      Re: Email Continuity

      I believe Messagelabs (now part of Symantec ) offer a business continuity service, but all email is passing via their servers before it reaches you

      What about internal high availability for Exchange?
      Tom Jones
      MCT, MCSE (2000:Security & 2003), MCSA:Security & Messaging, MCDBA, MCDST, MCITP(EA, EMA, SA, EDA, ES, CS), MCTS, MCP, Sec+
      PhD, MSc, FIAP, MIITT
      IT Trainer / Consultant
      Ossian Ltd

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      • #4
        Re: Email Continuity

        We use GFI MAX Mail which is a good bit cheaper than Messagelabs.
        BSc, MCSA: Server 2008, MCSE, MCSA: Messaging, MCTS
        Cruachan's Blog


        • #5
          Re: Email Continuity

          may not be entirely what you want, but

          your normal server has a DNS MX record, so that the internet knwos where to route the mail. This normally has a weighting of (probably) 10
          Weighting is used to decide which server to send to (so 10 is higher than 20)

          there are hosting companies around that will run a "secondary MX"
          So you would create a dns record with a weight of 20 and point it at that hosting server.

          when your MX10 is down, things would start routing to MX20.
          so MX20 accepts the mail, normally into one spool file or mailbox.
          Once your MX10 is back up, you can spool it out of MX20, into your normal server

          i beleive that's the way it works

          this should give you a little more info:

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