Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 - WinRoute
Introduction to Exchange 2003 Server - WinRoute
If you want to find out that bit more about Exchange 2003 routing, then WinRoute is the tool for you. The 'killer' feature of WinRoute is its display of link state information; you get a detailed breakdown of each connector, each address space and each Exchange Server in the routing group.
Topics for Exchange 2003 - WinRoute
WinRoute is not a magic bullet. However, it is a worthy addition to your toolkit and it will save you time when troubleshooting. In a nutshell, WinRoute displays in one interface, all the information that Exchange 2003 Server knows about connectors and servers. The benefit of WinRoute is that it saves you having to dive in and out of the individual property pages of each Routing Connectors. Other timesaving features include, instant display of what's working and what's not. The same interface also displays which server is a member of which routing group.
Microsoft supply WinRoute 2003 on the Exchange 2003 Server cd, navigate to the Support\Utils\i386 folder. The only trick is that before you launch it, copy WinRoute.exe into the Exchsrvr\Bin folder. Warning, if you just run WinRoute from just anywhere, it may not work. The reason is that WinRoute needs the company of, Dsaccess.dll, Pttrace.dll and Exchmem.dll, which are in this Exchsrvr\bin folder.
The latest versions is WinRoute 2003. Be aware that there is also an Exchange 2000 version of WinRoute. I do believe that there is also an Exchange 5.5. version of this utility.
When you execute WinRoute for the very first time, a message box asks you to: 'Enter the server name'. My advice is to choose either the Routing Group Master (if known) or if you are troubleshooting, the name of the Exchange 2003 server that is misbehaving.
The Bind Options that you see when you logon, are only required if the Exchange Server is in a different Active Directory domain. However, you could use the Bind Option to connect with different credentials, rather like the Run As command. Note the LDAP box, because here is a clue that WinRoute relies on LDAP queries to generate its information.
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Tree View Pane
I usually ignore the Version Information, and browse down to the RG Addresses. Before I double click, I predict will the SMTP address be the wildcard '*', or will it be a filter?
Next, I make a quick check of the RG (Routing Group) Members, and confirm that each Exchange server can see their RGM (Routing Group Master). I think of the RGM like a sponge absorbing information about link states. It seems to me, that the RGM's mission in life is to discover about as many other Exchange servers as possible, then communicate this link state to other members of its Routing Group.
What I am particularly interested in is scrolling down to the Connectors and discovering if there are any unexpected restrictions. At this point your eyes are drawn to the Status, is there good news and you see link State UP? Or do you see State Down: and so begin troubleshooting. A quick refresh can do no harm, and may magically cure the problem, but more likely you will need to visit the Application Log to look for more clues.
Address Space Pane
RAW Data Pane
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Here follows my overview of Routing, Link State and Queues. The big picture is held by the RGM (Routing Group Master), by analyzing all the Link States, the RGM calculates a route to any distant Exchange Server in another routing group. At the level of fine detail, each Exchange server only needs to know which queue to place any given piece of email. How does it know which of the 6 or more queues to drop the email? Why, by asking the RGM. Once you examine WinRoute, all this theory and calculation fits into place, just study the Routing Groups, Link States and the connectors.
If you experience problems either with WinRoute itself, or with routing email, then here are ideas for further investigation.
WinRoute tells lies
WinRoute goes mad
Launch regedit and navigate to:
I researched another idea which involves adding a second DWORD to the same part of the registry,
Value Name: SuppressStateChanges
Data Type: REG_DWORD
Rather than rebooting, just restart the following services:
Microsoft Exchange Routing Engine (RESvc)
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WinRoute 2003 is an impressive Microsoft utility for displaying, not only Routing Groups, but also their Exchange Server 2003 connectors and their address spaces. More than anything, Winroute saves you time checking the individual property sheets of each connector.