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Email retention and archive files

By jack.kessler ·
We have Exchange 5.5 with a 30GB Information store. It was hard getting decent limits put on the server. A political mess at best. Now we have that in place the users are using PST files to store mail on the file servers. The files get corruptedeasily and constantly need to be restored. They take up a ton of space on the file server. I am curious what others are doing that are facing the same problems.

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Us too!

by Trackhappy In reply to Email retention and archi ...

We are having the same issue. I have started putting the data back on the Exchange server even though my store is 34GB and growing. PST files have to be stored anyway, and are difficult to manage, and for users to find data in. I am going Exchange 2000 soon to split the store (Enterprise version), and am investigating "near-line storage" products. Basically these analyse data and move old stuff off, leaving behind a pointer instead. The data is stored on tapes in a library (after being verifiedas readable on multiple tapes etc.) and gets automatically restored if the object is requested by the user.
Haven't got far on the research, but any comments from those who have may be useful here.

Cheers
Glenn.

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Teach Users!

by areets In reply to Email retention and archi ...

The policy I applied across board (all clientts where either acting IT Manager or pure Exchange technical support and consultancy) was that all content of .pst files were the responsibility of the individual. That particular .pst was local.

On the principle that business data is kept separate from personal, and for all the users to not feel restraint when using Outlook, they choose whether business content would be either on .pst partition of a determined size for entire department's or team's total .pst file space or leave the business content on the Exchange server mailbox. All required busineess content is centralized and security and backup procedures facilitated.

Users must also realize that you CAN have multiple .pst files configured which should be used to receive filtered e-mail from MAIN INBOX.

Support time will be reduce significantly, if the above is implemented with users in mind.

Advantage:
teaching pragmatic usage of collaboration environment, hence users share the space based on 'first-come-first-served'.

Disadvantage: at least one person will complain

TSP

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Local PST files

by Punkita In reply to Email retention and archi ...

We have an Exchange server and all users' email profiles are set to deliver to personal folders - local files on their hard drives. When these reach upwards of 500MB, we create another profile with a new pst, but allow the user to choose the old profile(s)if they need them. This is due to PST files becoming corrupt as they get larger. Hopefully we catch them before they reach 1GB because then they are almost impossible to repair if they become corrupt!

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Hard limits

by clearsmashdrop In reply to Local PST files

I went through this, where users were crying like stuck pigs because they could not have a 1 GB email box. Wait and see what happens if you need to restore a downed Exchange server with 30 GB of email.

Anyway, its standard practices to set a limit on any mail server 50, 75, 200MB , whatever. Any additional mail gets put onto PST files on the local drive.

A lot of times, it comes down to teacher users how to manage email. Do you really need 4,000 items in your sent box ???

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Users...

by Cactus Pete In reply to Email retention and archi ...

We evaluated the users who had the most items, and asked them if we could work with them to reduce the size... They were generally nice about it. We took the opportunity to teach them how to better manage their mailbox.

But the management wouldnot hear of THEIR boxes being changed at all. No limits. So they were given a price tag.

We now have multiple Exchange 2000 clusters and a SAN, backed up over 2Gb fiber.

They wanted it, they are paying for it. We get newer hardware and software, and strengthened the DR policy, too.

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Interesting.

by clearsmashdrop In reply to Users...

If the executives wanted to pay for the hardware then that is good enough. I was surprised to find some executives very open to teaching them how to manage the mailbox.

One was very happy to find out that the send box had thousands of emails shedid not need.

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mind the gap

by Cactus Pete In reply to Interesting.

There is almost always more than one way to achieve a goal, when computers are involved. When taking issues to the management, you just need to know to whom you are speaking, and what options to present to them, in what language.

How much money could a company save if everyone just deletes their sent items more than 3 months old? [Then deletes them from deleted items, too...]

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E-mail retention and Archive files

by vze393zf In reply to Email retention and archi ...

First things first. Find a way to overcome the political opossition to requiring the redundant archiving. Archiving of PST files is a band aid of sorts. All you are really doing is moving mail out of the mailboxes in order to force actual information store limits. That part of the nightmare sounds over, but from a server storage perspective you need to consider moving to no .PST files, and have normal users (not executives for legal liability reasons) live within the confines of informationstore limits. It's tough, but someone has to fight that fight.

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