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Windows Server 2008 R2 Thread, Exchange 2010. Or not? in Technical; Evening All, At my last school I implemented Exchange 2003 and it transformed the way we worked. I am now ...
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    Exchange 2010. Or not?

    Evening All,

    At my last school I implemented Exchange 2003 and it transformed the way we worked. I am now in a new post and am looking to deploy exchange there too. School is a large secondary and with students, staff and community will be looking at approx 1700 mailboxes.

    Sorry but I have several questions:

    1. Licensing. How have you licensed. I was looking at schools agreement and have been told I need connector license for students to access mail from home. How have you done it?

    2. I am considering virtualising. What route have you gone and how much has this cost? What sort of hardware spec have you deployed?

    3. Live@edu. Would take all the fun out of it, but would I be doing the school a dis-service by not implemnting this free solution? Would be interested in your thoughts.

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    steve's Avatar
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    We've just upgraded to exchange 2010 and its quiet a different to 2003.

    If I were you and starting from scratch with no existing mail system, I'd go with Live@edu.

    No hardware to maintain / upgrade, no software to patch, no AV to manage, etc, etc.

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    Abaddon's Avatar
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    .. also no backup strategy and no recourse when it goes pear-shaped.

    I've split it out here, with on-premise Exchange 2010 for staff, and Live@Edu for students. Best of both worlds!

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    Thanks for the replies guys.

    If you have implemented Exchange 2010 I would be interested in your server specs and how you licensed. I would really like to host this ourselves as I think it is important to maintain our skillset and if we outsourced everything it really would be a dull job (see BSF)

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    We run exchange 2010 with 2 servers - an edge server (smtp relay in/out) and the main server (all other roles) the edge server has 4Gb RAM , main server will be upped to 16Gb very soon (has 8 but is a bit slow).

    Both servers are hyper-v virtual servers.

    All licensed through schools agreement.

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    Quote Originally Posted by steve View Post
    We run exchange 2010 with 2 servers - an edge server (smtp relay in/out) and the main server (all other roles) the edge server has 4Gb RAM , main server will be upped to 16Gb very soon (has 8 but is a bit slow).

    Both servers are hyper-v virtual servers.

    All licensed through schools agreement.
    Thanks Steve. Would you min sharing you server spec (complete) and number of mailboxes and cost. I am wondering if I am better of installing 2003/2007.

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    zag
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    I would go with Live@edu if it was a new implementation.

    I saw a good quote on twitter the other day.

    "In 2 years time running an exchange server in your organization is going to be like running your own nuclear reactor to power your home."

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    Quote Originally Posted by steve View Post
    We run exchange 2010 with 2 servers - an edge server (smtp relay in/out) and the main server (all other roles) the edge server has 4Gb RAM , main server will be upped to 16Gb very soon (has 8 but is a bit slow).

    Both servers are hyper-v virtual servers.

    All licensed through schools agreement.
    8GB is a bit slow? How much traffic/users do you have? Maybe I am a bit behind the times and need to check out the capabilities of Exchange 2010.

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    We upgraded from 2003 to 2010 over the summer. Didn't buy specific hardware but upgraded a spare 3 yr old server: HP ProLiant DL140 G3, 2x quad xeon 2.33GHz, 8GB RAM (although I might double that this week as I've some spare), running on Server 2008R2. Run all server roles on the one server but only using for staff though so less than 100 users. Not straining at all and access is faster than 2003 server (which was 7 yrs old anyway).
    We use OWA for external access - the 2010 SP1 version of OWA is a huge advance on 2003 OWA so i'd upgrade just for that. Don't need external connector licences for OWA.

  10. Thanks to timzim from:

    Zorba (28th September 2010)

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    Thanks for all the replies. The more I read it seems that scaling 2010 to provide 1700 mailboxes is just not cost effective. Has anyone out there achieved what I want to do on a schools budget without breaking the bank?

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    2,945 for 1700 user licensed Exchange 2010 Std?


    Wes

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    @gl3nnym 8Gb is MS minimum for a multi role server. We have 200+ staff using full outlook clients pretty much non stop all day. Most people haven't noticed the speed drop, but I have particularly when I have 3 or 4 mailboxes open.

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    "In 2 years time running an exchange server in your organization is going to be like running your own nuclear reactor to power your home."
    Mmm.. I've long talked about Exchange being technological overkill, as in the kind of thing you get "to run mail for a small planet", but I ran considerably simpler, and trivial to recover ones before it existed (Netware Mercury being my very first => your e-mails were stored as files in the file system) and have never got over the relative scariness of Exchange.

    @gl3nnym 8Gb is MS minimum for a multi role server.
    I'm convinced that used to be the other way around for 2007 i.e. MS said you ought to be scaling out (adding boxes) if you got to the point where you seriously though more RAM would help. Regardless I think there's a bit of a consensus that 16GB is better... and all of this might be different for 2010.

    if we outsourced everything it really would be a dull job
    But managing accounts in a local GUI is much the same as managing accounts in a Live@Edu + you can get to play with ILM, break things with a subset of the powershell cmdlets, even point code at it (I did the add a few things to someone else's mailbox test the other week => worked) etc. I suppose it just depends on whether your definition of interesting extends to having to fix a seriously broken local Exchange, not that they do tend to break.

    The inevitable problem with thinking about Exchange is predicting the various loads. You can waste a lot of your life not resolving much with the MS calculators, and by-and-by probably end up making it a bit of a Rolls-Royce solution just in case (which might turn out to be the right decision!). Do the latter for 1700 users and yup, there is a cost-effectivess problem.

    I think it's really hard to ignore/dismiss Live@Edu and I'm struggling to do so for Staff accounts, never mind Students.

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    Interesting this is the first i've seen of live@edu, what are the options for a school which already has exchange 2010 deployed with accounts for all staff and students in place, is it an easy thing to migrate to? We would only be after moving students and not teachers, it'd be nice to take a fair bit of the load off our exchange box, at the moment it's struggling and we can't afford to upgrade it.

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    zag
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    Live@edu is virtually the same as running exchange, the webmail interface is very similar and it works fine with outlook. Gmail do a good solution as well. They both have very well documented deployment guides.

    The only problem I can see is students having to log on to webmail instead of the single sign on we have now with exchange. Everything else would be an improvement though I have no idea what students would do with 8gb storage! They currently do just fine with 50mb

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