We had another great MCS Talks session yesterday delivered by two of our consultants Doug Gowans and Daniel Kenyon-Smith. We had a number of questions throughout the session so as a follow up here is some additional information and answers to the questions posted. 

Plus some additional questions we had right at the end of the session that we weren't able to answer fully but have had some updates from Doug and Dan on:

Q - "Would you use ISA 2007 to publish OWA as CAS is now in backend not in dmz or fronmt end now"

A - This article is definitely worth reading on this subject ‘Planning for Client Access Servers’ at http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb232184.aspx.

It is currently not supported to place your CAS servers in the perimeter network and so yes the most common implementation is to have ISA or an equivalent in the perimeter network and publish OWA, for example, through it.  The latest version of ISA is 2006 not 2007 but watch out for ‘Stirling’ (http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/forefront/stirling/default.aspx) which is currently in beta.  For specific information about setting up ISA for OWA have a look at this article ‘Publishing Exchange Server 2007 with ISA Server 2006’ available here: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb794751.aspx

Q - "Is managing a mailbox (inadvertently) in the wrong admin GUI still an issue? That is, managing an E2K7 mailbox using the E2K3 ESM... this used to cause problems going forward, although nothing was stopping you from doing it?"

I don’t believe anything has changed.  This article provides all the information you should need I hope: ‘Exchange Server 2007 and 2000/2003 systems management co-existence’ http://msexchangeteam.com/archive/2006/10/09/429135.aspx
Q - "Are there any white papers or documentation on 2003/2008 Server with EX2007 designs, and how would the Contoso 2003 Server with EX2007 design change if running 2008 Server with EX2007."

A - Unfortunately none that specifically debate the differences that your choice of operating system would make to a design. Although these are definitely worth a read – ‘Planning and Architecture’ at http://technet.microsoft.com/en-gb/library/aa998636(EXCHG.80).aspx

In our example scenario the main factors that change which might impact our chosen design are the fact that Windows Server 2008 allows us to have nodes in different Active Directory Sites.  This means that we now have the option to stretch CCR nodes across physical locations which might not have been possible according to our network as it stands.  I am not recommending this configuration because this introduces other challenges but Windows Server 2008 gives us this option which would have been worth exploring. Another factor is that if Contoso are heavy users of Outlook Anywhere the introduction of Windows Server 2008 may have meant that we could deploy less CAS servers to support the same number of clients.  The final point worth mentioning is that SMB version 2 is used in Windows Server 2008 and so log shipping will be quicker between CCR nodes and to the SCR target which has implications for data loss in the event of certain types of failure.

For a list of the main advantages of Windows Server 2008 which Exchange specifically benefits from please see the following:

Exchange Server and Windows Server 2008: http://msexchangeteam.com/archive/2007/08/16/446709.aspx
Exchange Server and Windows Server 2008, Part II: http://msexchangeteam.com/archive/2008/03/05/448338.aspx

Finally if you want to see more of what Doug and Dan are up to they both have their own blogs: 

Doug Gowans blog: http://blogs.msdn.com/douggowans/
Daniel Kenyon-Smith blog: http://blogs.technet.com/danielkenyon-smith/

We hope this additional information is going to help and thanks again to everyone who turned up to the live Webcast yesterday. For anyone who couldn't make it we should have the links up for the recording very soon.