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General Chat Thread, Is Our IT Support Company Ripping Us Off? in General; ...
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    Is Our IT Support Company Ripping Us Off?

    I'd like to gauge some general response to a billing request from our (consistently awful and incompetant) support company.

    The problem comes from our Exchange Server failing to backup since last week. This has not been a problem since it was installed in 2007 and we currently have approx 1000 mailboxes in use.

    This is from the email;


    I have been informed that the School has been having some issues with the backup of data from the Microsoft Exchange server. The operational requirements of the server has now reached capacity for the memory and it needs to be upgraded from 4Gb to 16Gb. The cost of the hardware is £400. Please will you let me know if you wish to proceed with this? I have agreed that our support team will install the memory free of charge.

    Please will you let me know as soon as possible so I can get the memory ordered today.

    Regards




    I'm no Exchange expert so is what they are saying legitimate or am i right to question this or maybe ask for some more evidence to warrant the need for such an increase in memory?

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    3s-gtech's Avatar
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    I'm not an expert in Exchange either - but just watch task manager when the backup tries to run. If you run out of system memory at this point it's fair - but somehow I don't think it's the cause.

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    tech_guy's Avatar
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    If they're as bad as you think they are then the exchange box is probably a massive spam relay and they don't even know it?

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    featured_spectre's Avatar
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    We had a similar issue, but it cost us £800 for the ram to be upgraded (from 8GB to 32GB), I think its mainly the cost for 2 8GB sticks of ram which they are charging for, which can be from £175 per stick.

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    powdarrmonkey's Avatar
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    Your backup software really shouldn't require 12GB of main memory to run a backup

    Either you have backup software, or they are clutching at straws.

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    box_l's Avatar
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    these free tools may help you decide
    Register for SolarWinds Exchange Monitor v1.0.2

    Diagnose, troubleshoot, and resolve Windows performance from Quest Software


    is the server running anything else?

    it seems the issue was backing the data up not exchange itself so maybe clarify what is using the memory.

    BoX

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    Dos_Box's Avatar
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    Exchange is a memory pig and TBH and 4GB is the minimum I'd run it on. It does sound though as if other factors are at work here as it is the backup causign it to bomb. What Version of Exchnage and backup software are you using?

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    mjs_mjs's Avatar
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    agreed - we have 2GB RAM and back up is fine - also around 1000 mailboxes.

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    It is Exchange 2007 and we are using Symantec Backup Exec, not sure version number.

    Because of the way the school is setup with this company we are limited in what we can do and see on the server, we can log onto it and thats about it really.

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    Its not on Citrix and/or HP servers? if so I know what the problem is

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    Quote Originally Posted by farquea View Post
    It is Exchange 2007 and we are using Symantec Backup Exec, not sure version number.

    Because of the way the school is setup with this company we are limited in what we can do and see on the server, we can log onto it and thats about it really.
    Is your BE configured to backup the individual mailboxes i.e. do you have the setting enabled that allows you to restore individual messages and mailboxes? If yo this is called GRT (Granular Restore Technology) then it may take more time to backup and also more disk space as well.

    Ash.

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    Our new exchange box was bumped to 12GB (performance calculator indicated about 7.5 - 8GB for our load, the extra 4Gb was negligible cost). But backups were running fine with 1100 users on 4GB.

    Guidance and calculators (.xlsx format) are linked here: You Had Me At EHLO... : Exchange 2007 Mailbox Server Requirements Calculator

    Ask your support company to explain their reasoning.

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    mjs_mjs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pete View Post
    Our new exchange box was bumped to 12GB (performance calculator indicated about 7.5 - 8GB for our load, the extra 4Gb was negligible cost). But backups were running fine with 1100 users on 4GB.

    Guidance and calculators (.xlsx format) are linked here: You Had Me At EHLO... : Exchange 2007 Mailbox Server Requirements Calculator

    Ask your support company to explain their reasoning.
    and if they insist and is doesn't imediatly solve the issue - get them to remove and it and dont pay them.


    we have exchange 2003 with some mods to the OWA (looks like outlook2010 hehehe), using backupexec 1d to a disk and then to tape, we do a full backup every night. works fine. thats on 2gb of ram as stated before.

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    mb2k01's Avatar
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    What do the backup log files say the reason for it failing is?
    I really can't imagine that upgrading the RAM on the server will magically cure a failing backup.

    If the backup used to work (on your existing amount of RAM) it must be another factor - maybe hard drive space, windows / symantec updates, config changes etc?

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    IanT's Avatar
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    Make sure your copy of Backup Exec is fully up-to-date, I've had a client having probems with version 11d, upgraded too 12.5 and fixed all the problems.

    Exchange 2007 will eat up alot of RAM but not necessarily use it, it may eat 4Gb up but will give back to the OS when it requests it.

    We have one client (Miniclip ) who have there server located in the states and that has 32Gb of RAM in there!
    Last edited by IanT; 24th September 2009 at 10:43 PM.



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