Guy’s Best Practice and Litmus Test Ezine #5 – Exchange & Outlook
This week’s newsletter is in two parts, the first section is dedicated to tips for Outlook. While the second section has Best Practice tips for migrating to Exchange 2003.
Contents for Ezine #5
1) Take a minute to create your Outlook Signature
4) ExDeploy – Grand Master Wizard
I have noticed that a number of the most talented programmers tend to use strange email clients rather than outlook. My old mate ‘Mad Mick’ uses a 60 character UNIX email client (he even wrote the code himself). Well here is my effort to persuade those gifted programmers to switch to Outlook. For the rest of you, here are few of my favourite tips.
Here is a free tool to monitor your Exchange Server. Download and install the utility, then inspect your mail queues, monitor the Exchange server’s memory, confirm there is enough disk space and check the CPU utilization.
This is the real deal – there is no catch. SolarWinds provides this fully-functioning freebie, as part of their commitment to supporting the network management community.
1) Take a minute and create your Outlook Signature
With Outlook you can automatically add your signature to each email you send. This works rather like having a footer in a Word document. Creating signatures is a classic for investing a few minutes, which then repays tenfold when you are in a hurry and want to dash off an email. With a little more effort you can extend the signature to reflect your personality and your mood. This is what a basic signature looks like:
There are a number of tactics with the Signature, in addition to just displaying your closing statement you can display one of these options:
Where do you create your signature?
2) What is Malware?
Have you heard of Malware? Malware is a program written with malicious intent. Trojan horses, worms, rogue ActiveX controls would all come under Malware.
Outlook Security can automatically block extensions that could contain a Malware. .BAT, .EXE. VBS, .JS along with 30 other file extensions are blocked.
Professionals package .EXE or .VBS files into Zips. The result is their friends can open the attachments.
Amateurs send the file in the native .VBS format and find their friends cannot open the attachment.
3) Smartscreen Junk Filters
Outlook 2003 uses Smartscreen technology, to filter out junk email. Users can change Outlook’s filter from Low to High or Exclusive. SmartScreen technology was developed by 1000’s of Hotmail subscribers, who analysed over a million emails, as either ‘Allow’ or as spam.
This section has tips for upgrading Exchange 5.5 servers to Exchange 2003. Despite the constant cry ‘The software is getting easier’ Exchange is one of the most difficult migrations.
4) ExDeploy – A grand master amongst wizards.
Here is new Wizard dedicated to guiding you through the Exchange 2003 migration process. Why do I call it the Grand Master? Because it calls all the other Wizards for example, ADC agreements to transfer account information from Exchange 5.5 to Active Directory. ExDeploy is a new utility in Exchange 2003, make it the focal point of migration. I call it the ‘Grand Master’ Wizard because it will call all the other utilities you need like ADC.
5) COMPATIBILITY with Active Directory
Professionals keeping their versions aligned. For example:
Exchange 2003 with Windows Server 2003 and Outlook 2003
Amateurs try and install Exchange 2003 in Windows 2000 domains. It cannot be done. See more on Exchange Compatability
6) Beware the Standard Edition of Exchange
Both Exchange 2000 and 2003 come in two editions – Standard and Enterprise.
Professionals always use the Enterprise Edition – no limit on mail store.
Amateurs try and save money and use the Standard Edition. Cheapskates have a problem when they hit the 16GB Store.exe limit – the server grinds to a halt. Now this Standard Edition is ok for very small companies, but do calculate how big your mail store will grow before you buy the Standard Edition. Exchange SP2 increases the limit from 16GB to 75GB, but even this is not satisfactory.
See interesting Exchange articles