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  • Blog Post: Troubleshooting High CPU utilization issues in Exchange 2013

    Introduction In Exchange support we see a wide range of support issues. Few of them can be more difficult to troubleshoot than performance issues. Part of the reason for that is the ambiguity of the term "Performance Issue". This can manifest itself like anything from random client disconnects...
  • Blog Post: New Support Policy for Repaired Exchange Databases

    The database repair process is often used as a last ditch effort to recover an Exchange database when no other means of recovery is available. The process should only be followed at the advice of Microsoft Support and after determining that all other recovery options have been exhausted. For many years...
  • Blog Post: Generating user message profiles for use with the Exchange Calculators

    Greetings Exchange Community! My name is Dan Sheehan, and I work as a Premier Field Engineer for Microsoft, specializing in Microsoft Exchange. As a long time Exchange engineer I am an avid PowerShell scripter, and as such I end up writing a lot of PowerShell scripts. Today I present to you one of those...
  • Blog Post: A better way to collect logs from your Exchange servers

    Do you dislike having to collect diagnostics logs manually from each server in order to troubleshoot an issue or establish a server performance baseline? Did it ever happen to you that you collected the logs, but then found out that you needed more logs from the time the issue was happening, but when...
  • Blog Post: Upgrade to Office Configuration Analyzer Tool (OffCAT) version 2

    It has been a little over a year since the OffCAT team shipped a new version, so I am very happy to tell you that we just released the very latest version (v2) . As with any new version, there are new features, diagnostic rules, and fixes in this latest OffCAT version. After reading about all these changes...
  • Blog Post: Using RBAC to restrict Discovery Searches

    Introduction eDiscovery is a powerful feature available in Microsoft Exchange. It’s used by eDiscovery Managers for performing discovery searches across all mailboxes in the organization and is very important for the purpose of the Compliance and Legal issues. By default, the Discovery Management role...
  • Blog Post: Exchange 2013 Monitoring Mailboxes

    Introduction Exchange Server 2013 introduced a new feature called Managed Availability , which is a built-in monitoring system with self-recovery capabilities. Managed Availability performs continuous tests (probes) that simulate end-user actions, to detect possible problems with Exchange components...
  • Blog Post: Network Ports for Clients and Mail Flow in Exchange 2013

    Once upon a time in a land far, far away I wrote an article that told our action packed supportability story about the relationship of firewalls and Exchange servers. While the majority of response was positive to this purposefully lighthearted article (if you can’t enjoy your work why do it? :), there...
  • Blog Post: Managed Availability Responders

    Responders are the final critical part of Managed Availability. Recall that Probes are how Monitors obtain accurate information about the experience your users are receiving. Responders are what the Monitors use to attempt to fix the situation. Once they pass throttling, they launch a recovery action...
  • Blog Post: Considering updating your Domain functional level from Windows 2003? Read this!

    Now that Windows Server 2003 end of life (July 14 th , 2015) is on the horizon, many customers are updating their Active Directory (AD) Domain Controllers (DC) from 2003. The first item to consider is which Windows Server Operating System (OS) you will be moving to for your DC’s. There are several options...
  • Blog Post: Configuring Multiple OWA/ECP Virtual Directories on the Exchange 2013 Client Access Server Role

    We have previously published guidance for setting up multiple OWA and ECP virtual directories for Exchange Server 2007 and 2010, and now it is the turn of Exchange Server 2013. The eagle eyed amongst you may spot some copy and paste from previous blogs on the subject, and well frankly, you’d be correct...
  • Blog Post: Single-Click Mailbox Conversion

    Here’s a scenario that might be familiar to you: Sometimes, in support-focused organizations, the email account for external communications with customers is often managed by a single employee. When that employee transitions out of that role, mailbox management responsibility can be shared by multiple...
  • Blog Post: Using an Azure VM as a DAG Witness Server

    I’m happy to announce support for use of an Azure virtual machine as an Exchange 2013 Database Availability Group witness server. Automatic datacenter failover in Exchange 2013 requires three physical sites, but many of our customers with stretched DAGs only have two physical sites deployed today. By...
  • Blog Post: Concerning Trends Discovered During Several Critical Escalations

    Over the last several months, I have been involved in several critical customer escalations (what we refer to as critsits) for Exchange 2010 and Exchange 2013. As a result of my involvement, I have noticed several common themes and trends. The intent of this blog post is to describe some of these common...
  • Blog Post: Come get your Calculator Updates!

    Today, we released updated versions of both the Exchange 2010 Server Role Requirements Calculator and the Exchange 2013 Server Role Requirements Calculator . The Exchange 2010 version is an incremental update and only includes minor bug fixes. You can view what changes have been made, or download the...
  • Blog Post: Be aware: October 26 2014 Russian time zone changes and Exchange

    We wanted to give you a heads up that depending on the version of Exchange you are running, there might be some impact to either names of time zones that are changing on October 26, or the way that actual meetings are displayed in affected time zones. Customers using our newer versions of Exchange, 2010...
  • Blog Post: Those pesky lazy indices

    In Exchange 2013 there are indices within a given mailbox database. The indices are created, maintained, and deleted by the Information Store Worker Process associated with a given database. These indices are not to be confused with the Exchange content indexes that are built via the Search Foundation...
  • Blog Post: Released: PelNet v2.0

    download Update : On August 25, 2014, the pelnet.ps1 script was updated to fix a minor bug. EHLO Exchange community, It seems that PelNet has been well received and I’ve been receiving requests to add much wanted functionality to PelNet. So this article is a quick update on some of the cool new features...
  • Blog Post: Improved CalCheck integration with OffCAT

    In the last week there have been two big improvements related to CalCheck and OffCAT that will make life a little easier when troubleshooting ‘calendar’ issues. 1. Relevant solutions for all CalCheck issues added to the following article: 2678030 Information about the Calendar Checking Tool for Outlook...
  • Blog Post: Site Resilience Impact on Availability

    This article continues the analysis I started in my previous article, DAG: beyond the “A” . We all understand that a good technology solution must have high levels of availability, and that simplicity and redundancy are the two major factors that drive solution availability. More specifically...
  • Blog Post: OAB Improvements in Exchange 2013 Cumulative Update 5

    Cumulative Update 5 (CU5) for Exchange Server 2013 will be released soon TM , but before that happens, I wanted to make you aware of a behavior change in the Offline Address Book that is shipping in CU5. Hopefully this information will aid you in your planning, testing, and deployment of CU5. The Offline...
  • Blog Post: Released: PelNet

    download With the huge scale environment I currently work in my team has had some difficulty when it comes to validating customer transport changes, specifically when adding new send connectors or new smart hosts. The same goes for troubleshooting mail flow….you know…whip out good...
  • Blog Post: The Preferred Architecture

    During my session at the recent Microsoft Exchange Conference (MEC), I revealed Microsoft’s preferred architecture (PA) for Exchange Server 2013. The PA is the Exchange Engineering Team’s prescriptive approach to what we believe is the optimum deployment architecture for Exchange 2013, and...
  • Blog Post: How to publish Anonymous Calendar Sharing URL in Exchange Online or Exchange 2013

    Do your users want to share their calendar with anonymous users? Here's a tip related to sharing your calendar via a web link for anonymous users (users outside of your organization). Users can publish their calendar for anonymous viewers using OWA . Organization administrators can also publish a...
  • Blog Post: Mailbox Migration Performance Analysis

    When you're migrating on-premises mailboxes to Office365, there are a lot of factors that can impact overall mailbox migration speed and performance. This post will help you investigate and correct the possible causes by using the AnalyzeMoveRequestStats.ps1 script to analyze the performance of a...