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Adding a mailbox server role into my production environment Exchange 2007 RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hi everyone:

    I think I have a very easy question for all you.

    Let me describe my scenario, I´m with a big company around 15,000 mailboxes.

    Currently, we have a mixed environment. (Exchange 2003/2007/2010).

    Mostly or production environment is running on Exchange 2003 SP3, Rollup 5.

    2 Exchange clustered mailbox (Active /Passive) windows 2003, with mailbox role only.

    Inside of each mailbox we also have a public folder database.

    2 boxes with Exchange 2007 (HT /CAS)

    We are planning to add a third mailbox server 2007 (Standalone) meanwhile the exchange 2010 process gets the manager´s approval. (Of course with the same service pack and same patches level.)

    The question is:

    What can we do to avoid any issues that could impact to Public folders information?

    As far as I can recall, Exchange 2007 are replicating just between them, replication parternship with exchange 2003 has been removed since one year ago.

    I believe when you install a mailbox role it should asks you if you want to also install a public folder database in it, Or does it install it automatically?

    Or something is taking place behind scenes?

    Sorry to make this kind of question, I´m just asking because I´ve been told that a previous email admin here in the company did a mess with the public folder information (they believe something went wrong with the replication) when was doing a similar change like this, but nobody could explain exactly what he did.


    JASM

    Monday, February 17, 2014 4:45 PM

Answers

  • If you're only moving "room" mailboxes to the server then just point the default PF database for the new mailbox database to an existing PF store.

    Adding a new mailbox database will have no effect on the existing PF databases.

    The only reason I suggested adding a PF database to the machine was so the mailboxes on the server would have someplace to access the PF hierarchy. The basis for that is that f the server is up the databases would be mounted. If you had replicas of PF's on more than one server then the mailboxes on the new server would still be able to find them. That won't be the case if you use a PF database on another machine. If that machine's down then the mailboxes on the new server would have no access to the PF hierarchy to know where to find a replica.


    --- Rich Matheisen MCSE&I, Exchange MVP

    Tuesday, February 18, 2014 10:16 PM

All replies

  • you can add new mailbox server and databases and point them back to the public folder databases on the existing servers. If you want to ensure a seamless experience you can make a test database and assign that only to the PF database on the new server. 

    Then add in the replicas to the new public folder store and test using a test mailbox , moving it between old databases and the test database to sneure end user experience is same. It should be as long as the relpicas list is populated.

    to add the new public folder database into the replica set you can use the builtin ps1 script:


    .\AddReplicaToPFRecursive.ps1 –Server EXC210 –TopPublicFolder \ –ServerToAdd “NEWEXC07”

    .\AddReplicaToPFRecursive.ps1 -TopPublicFolder "\NON_IPM_Subtree" ServerToAdd
    "NEWEXC07"

    ref:

    http://smtp25.blogspot.co.uk/2011/08/move-public-folders-all-replica-to.html

    then once you are happy the test mailbox works, repoint your new databses to the public DB on the new server too
    • Edited by Jon.Knight Monday, February 17, 2014 10:53 PM
    Monday, February 17, 2014 10:27 PM
  • I'd add a Public Folder database to each mailbox server. Point all the mailbox databases on that server to its own PF database -- but don't add the PF database to any public folder's replicas list. In this way you have a Public Folder database on each mailbox server that has, at least, the public folder hierarchy. The mailboxes in each of the mailbox databases will then have an always-available source of public folder information, but without any content on the server.

    The only time this falls apart is if you're using CCR and have only one PF database per cluster. In that case, point the mailbox databases on the server to a PF database that has replicas of the PFs in the organization (i.e. a machine that's not a CCR member).


    --- Rich Matheisen MCSE&I, Exchange MVP

    Monday, February 17, 2014 10:37 PM
  • Hi Guys:

    I forgot to say:

    My intention for this standalone Mailbox server, is just to install the mailbox role 2007 nothing else, I´m not interesed to add a new public folder database and it´s because it will be a temporary server , I need to move on some rooms that are causing me high performance in one of my clustered mailbox (around 1000).

    The question is more in terms that if I add this new mailbox role, does it affect the public folder databases that we already have?

    I´m looking for some kind of background process taking place or something unknown that could affect the data integrity, maybe a checkbox or a recommendation. (My apologizes, If this sounds exagerated)

    Even though, I´m pretty sure this addition will be totally transparent, cause when you add second or third mailbox role by default the public folder database is not installed , if you want it, it has to be done manually, but as I said here the IT managers are scaried because of a previous experience the company lost too much information stored on Public folders and too many important people was really angry.


    JASM

    Tuesday, February 18, 2014 9:43 PM
  • If you're only moving "room" mailboxes to the server then just point the default PF database for the new mailbox database to an existing PF store.

    Adding a new mailbox database will have no effect on the existing PF databases.

    The only reason I suggested adding a PF database to the machine was so the mailboxes on the server would have someplace to access the PF hierarchy. The basis for that is that f the server is up the databases would be mounted. If you had replicas of PF's on more than one server then the mailboxes on the new server would still be able to find them. That won't be the case if you use a PF database on another machine. If that machine's down then the mailboxes on the new server would have no access to the PF hierarchy to know where to find a replica.


    --- Rich Matheisen MCSE&I, Exchange MVP

    Tuesday, February 18, 2014 10:16 PM