1.2 Exchange 2003 enhancements

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Exchange 2003 does not include any fundamental architectural changes from Exchange 2000. It is primarily a feature enhancement release that can almost be considered as an Exchange 2000 Service Pack. Exchange 2003 provides many new features and enhancements to improve reliability, manageability, and security.

Security enhancements include:

  • Several changes to help reduce unsolicited e-mail (e.g., support for real-time safe and block lists, inbound recipient filtering, Microsoft Outlook and Outlook Web Access privacy protection to prevent spammers from identifying valid e-mail addresses by means of links to external content, the ability to restrict SMTP relay, and the ability to restrict submissions)

  • The ability to restrict distribution list access to authenticated users

  • Removal of the M: drive

  • An improved antivirus API

  • Permissions changes to support cross-forest administration

  • Kerberos authentication between front end and back end servers

  • Changes for public folder permissions for unknown users and for public folder store replication

  • Clustering security enhancements

Reliability and performance enhancements include support for up to eight node clusters, reduced virtual memory fragmentation, faster cluster failover, automatic reporting of errors to Microsoft, improved Outlook synchronization performance, distribution list member caching, enhanced DNS-based Internet mail delivery, and suppression of Out of Office messages to distribution lists.

Although Outlook 2003 is provided as a separate product, Exchange 2003 includes enhancements to support new Outlook 2003 functionality. Outlook 2003 enhancements include:

  • Support for RPC over HTTP to reduce the need for Virtual Private Networks or dial-up remote access service

  • Protection against unsolicited e-mail (e.g., better junk mail filters, safe lists to allow users to receive e-mail only from specific individuals or domains, external HTML blocking to prevent spammers from using URLs to verify recipients' e-mail addresses as active)

  • Improved performance over low-bandwidth connections (e.g., MAPI compression to reduce network bandwidth consumption between the client and server, cached mode to reduce the number of requests to the server for data, buffer packing of client-to-server communication to reduce the number of requests to and from the Exchange server)

  • Improvements to the offline synchronization process (e.g., incremental change synchronization, smart change synchronization, ability to skip bad items)

  • Kerberos authentication

Outlook Web Access enhancements include user interface usability improvements, enhanced security (e.g., S/MIME support, web beacon blocking to prevent spammers from confirming e-mail addresses, the ability to set a list of blocked file types that can be received, session inactivity time-out), and performance improvements.

One major change for Exchange 2003 from Exchange 2000 is the addition of the mobile support that was previously in Microsoft Mobile Information Server. This includes support for Pocket PC and Smartphone synchronization (including remote access to e-mail, calendar, contacts, tasks, and the Global Address List), support for WAP 2.0 and HTML browser-based devices, Outlook Mobile Access support for mobile phone browser access to Exchange servers for Compact HTML on i-Mode devices, and support for up-to-date notifications.

In addition to those many enhancements, Microsoft has removed several components for Exchange 2003. If you need to continue using these components, you must keep Exchange 2000 servers to host these components. The affected components are the Lotus cc:Mail Connector, the Microsoft Mail Connector and Directory Synchronization Agent, Chat, Instant Messaging, and Conferencing Server. Microsoft also decided to hide the M: drive because too many customers were trying to take a backup of Exchange using the M: drive or were trying to defragment the M: drive.

The following new or enhanced features have a direct effect on how you manage Exchange 2003.

  • Volume ShadowCopy service. When running on Windows 2003, Exchange 2003 supports online snapshots of the database using the Windows 2003 Volume ShadowCopy Service. Volume ShadowCopy snapshots provide near-instantaneous backup and restore, because a mirrored copy of the database exists at any time and can be used for restore processes.

  • Mailbox Recovery Center. The Mailbox Recovery Center in the Exchange System Manager (ESM) allows easier recovery of mailboxes that have been deleted accidentally. It scans the mailbox database to find disconnected mailboxes, matches these disconnected mailboxes to the appropriate Active Directory user accounts, recovers individual or multiple mailboxes, and identifies conflicts.

  • Tools to control unsolicited e-mail. Exchange 2003, Outlook 2003, and Outlook Web Access include several enhancements to help control unsolicited e-mail.

    • Real-time safe and block lists. Exchange 2003 supports connection filtering based on real-time safe and block lists.

    • Inbound recipient filtering. The recipient filter reduces unsolicited e-mail by filtering inbound e-mail based on the recipient. E-mail sent by anonymously authenticated users that is addressed to users who are not found, or to whom the sender does not have permission to send, is returned to the sender with the appropriate nondelivery report.

    • Ability to restrict relaying. SMTP relaying can be restricted or relaying privileges can be granted to specific IP addresses.

    • Improved junk mail filters. The Outlook 2003 junk mail filter examines spam and normal e-mail to identify keywords and patterns (e.g., was the mail sent at an unusual time of day) that can be used to detect suspected spam. Suspected spam is moved to a special Junk e-mail folder.

    • Safe lists. Outlook 2003 users may choose to only receive e-mail from individuals already set up in their address books, from specific e-mail addresses, or from designated domains.

    • Web beacon blocking. By default, Outlook 2003 and Outlook Web Access block external HTML to stop spammers from using web beacons to confirm that the recipient's e-mail address is active. Users can unblock HTML on a per-message basis for messages they know do not contain beacons.

    • Distribution list access. Administrators can specify which users can send messages to specific distribution list addresses. They can also prevent unauthenticated users from sending to distribution list addresses.

  • Consolidated queue viewer. ESM includes a consolidated queue viewer. All of the queues for a server can now be viewed in one place.

  • Dynamic distribution lists. Exchange 2003 introduces a new type of distribution group called dynamic distribution lists or query-based distribution groups. With standard distribution groups, members are added and removed manually. Query-based distribution groups are built automatically using Lightweight Directory Access Protocol queries to select the members.

  • Cluster failover time. Exchange 2003 has flattened the dependency hierarchy of Exchange services so that the protocol services are no longer dependent on the Information Store service. This allows administrators to bring the Exchange store online and offline at the same time as the protocols are brought online and offline.

  • Cluster-aware ESM. ESM is cluster aware so that virtual servers can be moved between nodes in a cluster and cluster virtual servers can be brought offline and online.

  • Move Mailbox. The Move Mailbox tool allows you to select multiple mailboxes to move from one server to another or to a different Exchange store.

  • Ability to change folder locations. ESM provides the ability to change the location for the Message Tracking Log folder, SMTP queue folder, and X.400 Message Transport Agent queue folder. In Exchange 2000, changing these settings was a complicated procedure involving ADSI Edit and the Registry Editor.

  • Public folder management. You can create new public folders and view and post public folder content from ESM without having to use Outlook. It is also easier to check the replication status of public folder replicas, and administrators have the option to force public folder replication.

Microsoft recommends Windows 2003 because many new features are only supported on Windows 2003. However, as shown in Table 1.1, Exchange 2003 runs on both Windows 2000 Service Pack 3 and Windows 2003. Exchange 2000 runs on Windows 2000, but it will not run on Windows 2003. Therefore, to upgrade from Exchange 2000 to Exchange 2003, you must first upgrade to Exchange 2003 and then upgrade the operating system to Windows 2003.

Table 1.1: Exchange and Windows Compatibility

Windows 2000

Windows 2003

Exchange 2000



Exchange 2003



Running Exchange 2003 on a Windows 200 server requires Windows 2000 Service Pack 3 or later.


Exchange 2000 with Service Pack 3 or later can run on a Windows 2000 server in a Windows 2003 Active Directory environment, but it cannot run on a Windows 2003 server alone.

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Monitoring and Managing Microsoft Exchange Server 2003
Monitoring and Managing Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 (HP Technologies)
ISBN: 1555583024
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2003
Pages: 128

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