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EXCHANGE-UNIX FAULT TOLERANT E-MAIL

By Shanghai Sam ·
SCENARIO:

Currently:

Externally hosted DNS + mailboxes on a UNIX server
SMTP addresses: first.last@techcompany.com
Exchange 5.5 server SP4 not connected to the Internet (Intra-office mail. Outlook is configured with offline folders and POP3 option to download external mail)

TRYING TO ACCOMPLISH some FAULT TOLERANCE

Windows NT 4.0 SP6a (DOMAIN: CHICAGO)
Exchange 5.5 server SP4
Internet Mail Connector (registered domain name: techcompany.com)
Do you see any problems configuring the Internet Mail Connector with this internal/external mail scenario?

SMTP: addresses of each user will be first.last@techcompany.com. IS IT NECESSARY FOR THE EXTERNAL SMTP addresses to match THE INTERNAL ONES?


1. What else needs to be done on the UNIX or Exchange Server to set up some kind of a fault tolerance in case the Exchange server goes down besides 2 MX records (the UNIX box with lower priority)

2. We are trying to have all mail directed to the Exchange server. In case it wentdown we want all the e-mails to be directed to the UNIX box. We don?t know how it will be retrieved after the Exchange server comes back on line?

3. Do we have to set up some kind of a forwarder on the mail servers (which server UNIX or Exchange?) or just to enable POP3 Internet e-mail within Outlook?

4. If forwarders are the way to go how is it going to work when the Exchange server is down? Is the forwarder going to just keep trying until the Exchange is back on line?

5. If the POP3client is the way to go how is it going to affect outgoing mail if the OFFLINE folders are enabled and the Exchange server is down. Isn?t it going to make sending outgoing (without the Exchange on line) mail impossible?

PLEASE, REPLY IF ANY OF YOU HAVE HAD ANY LUCK implementing a similar solution? Maybe, you know something better?

Thanks a lot,

Witold

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EXCHANGE-UNIX FAULT TOLERANT E-MAIL

by MLC In reply to EXCHANGE-UNIX FAULT TOLER ...

Dog Food for thought,... Redundancy should include Exchange, UNIX and DNS.

Build two low end UNIX servers, one for Outbound the other Inbound mail, use a product like " Virewall" (yes with a V) for virus protection (safe for pop 3 clients also).

Enable two Virtual DNS names, one for UNIX the other for Exchange. One for UNIX servers & clients, unix.imail.net and one for Exchange servers (give some thought to clients configuration), exch.imail.net. This prevents UNIX clients being effected by Exchange clients. The name is in DNS so you could rebuild a box and route to the new IP address without the need to reconfigure SMTP on any mail server or client.

On the UNIX virewall servers, software automatically reroutes mail to the other UNIX server if a hardware failure or corrupt mail message stops the flow. You'll have degradation but mail continues to flow.

On the Exchange servers, setup two (IMC) SMTP connections with one cost higher to use the outbound exch.imail.net. If amiss formed mail message stops flow, you now have redundant routes for Exchange going to a redundant virtual route on UNIX.

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