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Exchange Archiving

Discussion in 'Software' started by Theprof, Jun 28, 2010.

  1. Theprof

    Theprof Petabyte Poster Forum Leader

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    Can anybody recommend a good Exchange Archiving mailbox solution? We're looking at decreasing the sizes of our Mailbox stores and this idea was brought up.

    Thanks!
     
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  2. adam_h

    adam_h Bit Poster

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    If you are looking at the whole database and not just individual mail boxes I use Journaling in exchange. Stores a copy of sent and received emails across all mailboxes. This can grow in size rapidly though if you have many users. Then at the end of each month I use exmerge to export it to a pst file and store then clear out the journaling mailbox and start again.

    Our emails are also archived online with our Mimecast spam service, which is a good service, but obviously more expensive than using journaling.

    Adam
     
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  3. zebulebu

    zebulebu Terabyte Poster

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    A lot of places use Enterprise Vault - formerly KVS before Slimeantics bought them out and ruined their product (just like they did to Veritas' Backup Exec). Personally I've never bothered - just implement hard limits in Exchange and tell people to learn how to manage their own PST files.
     
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  4. Theprof

    Theprof Petabyte Poster Forum Leader

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    I am looking at archiving at the mailbox as well... The problem we have and this is something that was happening before I got there is that we have users who have 20GB mailbox because they never delete their emails. And as you can guess, the size of the mailbox is due to attachments. I use exmerge when I can, meaning I have a Microsoft Exchange 2003 server but when dealing with mailbox over 2GB, exmerge does not work then I turn to outlook.
     
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2010
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  5. Theprof

    Theprof Petabyte Poster Forum Leader

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    This something I am looking into at the moment, but based on experiences from the past they're expensive. It would be interesting to see how we go about this as I recently implemented an off-site back so the budget is kind of tight I am sure. I will need to write up a proposal and present it to upper management, we'll see how that goes!
     
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  6. zebulebu

    zebulebu Terabyte Poster

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    Frightening. A mailbox over 3Gb is an accident waiting to happen. Large mailbox performance is much better nowadays than it was in the dark ol' days of E2K or (shudder) 5.5, but the more it gets beyond 2Gb, the more of a PITA it becomes to manage. If you're using cached exchange mode (and you absolutely should), OST performance drags like a thirsty two legged dog in the desert sun above 2Gb. And, with 20Gb mailboxes, I'm betting most of the lUsers don't have a clue about how to manage anything efficiently, so are bound to have more than 5000 items in their 'system' folders in outlook (Inbox, Sent Items, Deleted Items etc). I'm surprised their mailboxes work at all as item counts in those folders are probably way over 10000.

    I hate the laissez-faire approach to user mailboxes taken by most Exchange admins. I'll give you an example - I recently put limits in our Exchange server because, frankly, some of the mailbox sizes were obscene. One of the users had a 3Gb mailbox that she swore blind she needed every item in. Closer inspection showed she had 13000+ items in her inbox - more than 11000 of which were unread. 50% of these were stats emails generated daily by Oracle (she's a DBA) that she had never read and never needed to read. After about two hours' worth of sitting with her, creating four seperate archive PSTs for mail on a year-by-year basis and moving stuff into them, she ended up with a 115Mb mailbox (and I ended up with 3Gb of whitespace on one of my mailbox stores, but that's another story :biggrin)

    You could, of course, always just take the 'sod it, let the server crash, that will teach them' approach, but unless you're high up enough to have already made representations at board level about the issue and flagged it as a potential disaster that's not likely to go down well. Besides, no engineer with a conscience can see a potential problem and not mitigate against it, right?

    Take a look at pfdavadmin - extremely handy for getting folder item counts across your mailboxes and very useful for pinpointing particular 'problem' users. Remember, despite all the hoo-ha about mailbox sizes, it's not actually the size of the mailbox that will cause issues for Exchange - it's the number of items in those 'default' folders created every time you create an Exchange mailbox.
     
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  7. onoski

    onoski Terabyte Poster

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    That's a nice one Zeb, and you have to like those type of huge mailbox users and how they justify the need for it etc.

    I still think it would be good to have a policy in place and a default mailbox size to help overcome some of these hurdles and impossible users.

    I also create a personal folder for users with the path connected to their personal network drive. Well the joys of working in IT not:)
     
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  8. Sparky
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    Sparky Zettabyte Poster Moderator

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    A good place to start is to exmerge the sent items, it is rarely used by users and will probably have every single email they have sent since you set up their mailbox.
     
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  9. zebulebu

    zebulebu Terabyte Poster

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    Tru dis. You should also know that ExMerge can handle date ranges too, so if you're not able to get the whole lot of their sent items because either it hits the hard limit of 2Gb for a pst or there are more than the max number of items allowed in a pst (I think it's something like 16536, but I could be wrong) you can exmerge between certain dates to get them all out of there.
     
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  10. nugget
    Honorary Member

    nugget Junior toady

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    I've heard good things about GFI.

    At my last place we set this system up from Mailstore. Quite easy and relatively inexpensive.
     
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  11. Josiahb

    Josiahb Gigabyte Poster

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    Nice suggestions Nugg, I've had mail archiving sat on my to do list for a while but our outsourcing company get all fisgetty at the mention of PSTs so it looks like I'm going to be making the case for spending £2000 on a decent software package!

    Glad I'm not dealing with mailbox sizes the likes of some of theones mentioned here, our largest is only 7GB... I've been battling to get users to clear things out for ages and I'm losing so if I can at least get them out of the main milstore that'll ease things a lot, we're getting too close to the max size limit for my liking (Still on Exchange '03 standard so 75GB is all we get).
     
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  12. Theprof

    Theprof Petabyte Poster Forum Leader

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    Thanks a lot guys for the pointers. This is something that I am going to take seriously and try and rectify the situation as much as possible. Also at some point or another, when we migrate everyone to outlook 2007, we're going to migrate to exchange 2007 as well... Although I don't know how long that will take.
     
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