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Setting up Exchange... question about DNS records

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  • Setting up Exchange... question about DNS records


    Im about to setup SBS 2003 Standard with internet and Exchange email in a test environment.

    As it stands, the box is installed and running fine, but i want to be able to use Exchange to send and receive email, using a domain i have purchased and can control the DNS of. My question is, what steps do i need to take?

    Reading tutorials, they all seem to gloss over it. I see i have to run the "Configure Internet and Email" wizard, but thats where they seem to stop. Running that wizard doesnt complete the process, as i still need to setup the DNS entries with my domain registrar, right? The (Trainsignal) tutorial ive seen, as far as i can see, misses out any mention on DNS entries, implying that SBS / Exchange somehow magically do it for you.

    Can someone confirm this, and maybe even outline the steps i need to take / point me to a decent tutorial? Im thinking, run the wizard, and then configure the DNS entries via the domain registrar's website (the details of which ill have to find out), and then im done. Correct?

    Thanks for any help!

  • #2
    Re: Setting up Exchange... question about DNS records

    Once you have run the wizard with the correct details you need to make sure any external firewalls are setup to allow SMTP into your exchange server and then ask your registrar to setup an MX record for something like and then a n A record for pointing to the IP address you have allowed SMTP inbound on.

    This is a good site for checking (type for example).
    This will show you the MX and A all in one line though

    Please read this before you post:

    Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?


    • #3
      Re: Setting up Exchange... question about DNS records

      Thanks for the reply.

      Just quickly, as it stands the domain i am going to use has been setup by the ISP to collect mail on its servers, and then we download it via POP3. As such, there are allready two A records (@ and www) and an MX record (priority 10).

      I think i read somewhere, or it would be nice somehow, to in the event of our server failing, for emails to be routed and stored to the ISP instead, where they can build up and be collected. Is that possible, by somehow keeping the existing records, and then adding my own pointing to my own server, and fiddling with the priorities?

      EDIT: The above paragraph didnt make much sense! Im trying to say, can i keep the ISP DNS records there, and then add my own. Then, if my server crashes, can i either automatically (somehow as the emails are bounced from the server being down) route the emails to be stored on the ISP's servers, or manually do online and change the priories to direct all email to the ISP while our server is repaired?

      Is this possible?
      Last edited by Major_Disaster; 14th July 2008, 14:36.


      • #4
        Re: Setting up Exchange... question about DNS records

        Add a second MX Record with a higher cost (20) and have it point to your ISPs email server. Then when or if your Exchange goes down, the email is forward to and held by your ISP until you get your Exchange Server backup and online.
        1 1 was a racehorse.
        2 2 was 1 2.
        1 1 1 1 race 1 day,
        2 2 1 1 2


        • #5
          Re: Setting up Exchange... question about DNS records

          Thanks for the reply, but could you clarify it please - im having a little trouble understanding it completely.

          Are you saying to delete the existing DNS records.
          Add an entery to point mail to my server (at a lower "cost").
          Add an entry to point mail to the ISP's servers (at a higher "cost"). Correct?

          Is just that first time through i read it as, keep the ISP existing records, then add a second set - implying that i would have to POP3 (mail connector) to get my mail.

          EDIT: Quick question. Ive added the DNS records (with in the MX records. In the "Connect to the Internet" Wizard, my email domain name should be, and my web server name for the server certificate should be - right? I feel i need to enter in somewhere in SBS...

          Last edited by Major_Disaster; 14th July 2008, 18:57.


          • #6
            Re: Setting up Exchange... question about DNS records

            ^^^ Any ideas?

            UPDATE: Its been a couple of days since i added the records, so DNS should be setup on the ISP's side of things (typing in IE takes me to my router login page - the external static IP of the network). Sending an email though to the domain in question wasn't received by my server, but i think this is because i need to setup port forwarding.

            The box is behind a Netgear DG834N (Router / Switch / Hardware Firewall). The question is, do i need to configure the port forwarding within the Netgear control panel, or inside SBS in Routing and Remote Access? Or both?


            • #7
              Re: Setting up Exchange... question about DNS records

              You need to configure your router to forward ports to the SBS's internal IP

              To receive email, forward SMTP (Port 25)
              To use OWA/RPC-HTTP forward ports 80 and 443

              There are some others, the most important being remote desktop (port 3389) to allow you to control the server from outside the LAN!
              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

              ** Remember to give credit where credit is due and leave reputation points where appropriate **


              • #8
                Re: Setting up Exchange... question about DNS records

                If you wish, you can skip 3389 for RDP (remember TSGrider can eventually get in on this one) and go for the safer 4125 for Remote WEB Workplace (RWW). You reach this by using <FQDN>/remote. Thus if you run the CEICW and create a certificate for mail.domain.tld, you would access RWW via https://mail.domain.tld/remote

                Steven Teiger [SBS-MVP(2003-2009)]
                Iím honoured to have been selected for the SMB 150 list for 2013. This is the third time in succession (no logo available for 2011) that I have been honoured with this award.

                We donít stop playing because we grow old, we grow old because we stop playing.


                • #9
                  Re: Setting up Exchange... question about DNS records


                  I used this website to set up the port forwarding.

                  I was pulling out my hair not knowing what was wrong... and in the end it came down to a software firewall blocking the traffic! After disabling that everything worked great!

                  Thanks for the help you guys.