monitoring Exchange 2007 external mail flow with SCOM 2007 R2 RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hello,
    I have a SCOM 2007 R2 server and an Exchange 2007 Environment. I have installed the Exchange 2007 R2 MP for SCOM, and set up synthetic transactions to test mail flow. I also would like to set up SCOM to monitor external mail flow outside of my organization. To do this , I planned on using the "Exchange 2007 Mail Flow Cross Organization Discovery" Object discovery
    As I have come to understand it, this Object Discovery utilizes a system mailbox on the Exchange server in question, and sends messages from that system mailbox to any email address you specify with a delivery receipt requests attached to it. it then waits to receive a delivery receipt back to determine whether mail is flowing properly.
    That is all well and good, except none of the "cross organization" mailboxes I have access to are on an exchange server, so they ignore the deliver receipt request.
    I believe that as long as the subject of the DSN contains the same information as the original test message sent, that the alert wiil check out. If that's the case, can I simply set the "external test mailbox" to forward the message back to the system mailbox?
    An issue with that solution is that my system mailbox does not have a real internet address. it's something along the lines of system{xxxxxxx}@localhost. is there a way to assign the system mailbox in question a real address so I can accomplish my goal?
    If this is not possible, what are some other options for verifying mailflow outside of my organization through SCOM?
    additionally, it would seem to me that the system mailbox could eventually get very large. does it automatically purge these test messages, or do I have to manually do it?

    Christiaan Zaluzec
    Monday, May 16, 2011 2:35 PM


  • Hi Christiaan, I have not played with this before. But if it check for a delivery receipt it will probably not work by sending mails back from the remote system in a forward rule. Also this could generate a mail-loop at some stage when something happens on your side. It is hard to monitor outside of your own influence sphere. Of course I assume you have no way of placing an agent on the remote system or run scripts from it (for instance if you want to monitor a hotmail/gmail or whatever). Of course you might try some automated way of generating email, but you will ahve to find a way to make it possible to monitor on it through some script or counter and in that case it would fill up a box. Also SMTP is not a synchronous end-to-end protocol, so an email could take anywhere between seconds to minutes to even more to arrive at destination and that would not matter much as long as it doesnt become hours or days (or not at all). So I guess that if you want to test this you would have to find an email server that does give receipts back, and also you need to check that grooming happens.
    Bob Cornelissen - BICTT (My BICTT Blog)
    • Marked as answer by Yog Li Wednesday, May 25, 2011 9:48 AM
    Monday, May 16, 2011 5:26 PM