Exchange Archiving

Discussion in 'Windows Small Business Server' started by John LeMay, Jan 30, 2004.

  1. John LeMay

    John LeMay Guest

    I have recently (today in fact) installed a SBS2003 server for a new
    client who has four users in the office. After importing mail from three
    of the four users the Exchange database is - get ready - 3.4GB. The
    final user will likely increase that size by about 1.0-1.5GB. Mail goes
    back to around 2001, all needs to be kept, and there is a LOT of
    attachments as you can imagine.

    Exchange Enterprise is just an outrageous concept for four users, but
    I'm afraid that within 24-36 months the database is going to hit that
    16GB mark. What I would like to do is archive messages into a new, non-
    Exchange database. I've seen a couple of products that do this, and some
    leave a "ghost message" in Exchange (that is obviously much smaller) so
    the users can easily and seamlessly retrieve them.

    Another option would be a way to archive only attachments into
    potentially a new database (non-Exchange) or some other storage, but
    maintain the link between the original message and the attachment for
    ease of retrieval.

    Does anyone know anything about products that can provide this type of
    function? These are small office users, so I'm really interested in
    products that are as seamless as possible and they need to be relatively
    hands-off management as well.

    John LeMay, Jan 30, 2004
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  2. How did you import the existing email into Exchange? Where did it come

    My guess would be that you may well have a degree of duplication
    whereby users sent attachments to each other, and there are now 2-3
    copies of the same attachment in the Exchange database. This won't
    happen in future, because Exchange has a feature called Single Instance
    Storage that means it keeps just one copy of emails to multiple
    internal users, and maintains a pointer to it for each user. It's
    possible that the users could go back through their emails and work
    together to eliminate duplicates that already exist, thus shrinking the
    overall size of the Exchange data (though Exchange won't give up the
    disk space!).
    Steve Foster [SBS MVP], Feb 1, 2004
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  3. John LeMay

    John LeMay Guest

    Hi Steve,
    Imports from PST files. Several per user in some cases.
    I'm certain there are a few duplicates in the database, but not too many
    since the users rarely share information - especially attachments - with
    others in the office. It's the nature of their business, they don't
    share clients. In some cases there were duplicate messages in each
    user's collection of PST files as well. Once everything was imported and
    the users' cleaned up their new inboxes Exchange reported about 500MB
    (of the 2.4GB) of space had been recovered after it's first cleanup of
    the mailbox store. As of Friday Exchange was still reporting 116MB of
    free space in the store.

    However, something else seems odd and I haven't put a finger on it yet.
    I'm pretty sure the default for Outlook 2003, at least how SBS2003
    pushed it, is to use cached mode. My guess is that Outlook is using the
    OST file on the users' machines to store everything as it comes in and
    then will synch up with Exchange at some point. After I imported the
    last user's PST files (8 files, 1.4GB total size) the size of the
    mailbox store size never changed, nor did the time stamp on the file,
    even after the 4-5 hours passed between when I finished the import and
    when the user left for the day. If I allow for the 500MB or so free
    space in the database that Exchange reported (prior to importing the
    last user, 24 hours after importing all other users) I would have
    expected to see some growth or at least a change in the time stamp
    Explorer reports as last modified.

    Of these users, only one is a laptop user that takes his machine home at
    night. All others are desktops that are on 7x24. I'd like to disable the
    use of OST files by disabling cached mode on the desktop machines. Any
    options from others in the group would be greatly appreciated.
    John LeMay, Feb 1, 2004
  4. I can't come up with a good reason to use cached mode on a desktop with a
    wired connection to the sbs, on the lan; *except* junk mail filter relies on
    it. There could be other reasons, but I haven't found any.

    If you don't make use of junk mail in Outlook, turn off cached mode.
    Les Connor [SBS MVP], Feb 1, 2004
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