Exchange Server Maintenance Functions

Here’s a couple of PowerShell functions that can be used to put an Exchange 2013/2016 server into “maintenance mode.”

There hasn’t been an official maintenance mode for Exchange Server since Server 2010, which introduced DAG capabilities that greatly improved failover and reduced the need for an official maintenance mode for the servers. With Server 2016, the need for putting a server into maintenance mode has returned due to AutoReseed and AutoDAG features that re-mount databases on their primary server if possible.…

Continue Reading →

Resolving Outlook Certificate Errors

How to solve problems with Exchange Autodiscover. Certificate Error issues in particular.

Continue Reading →

Office 365 Migration – When Do I Need to Use Third Party Tools?

This post may be late in coming, given that most smaller companies have already moved away from on-prem solutions to cloud based services for things like email and file sharing, but I feel like it’s important to stress some of the realities involved in migrating from on-prem to cloud systems. Particularly when migrating to Office 365.…

Continue Reading →

Clearing Logs from All Exchange Servers

IHere’s a fun script. There are plenty of scripts that clear logs from an Exchange server, but this one goes the extra mile by doing it on every Exchange server in your environment (CAS, HUB, and MBX). The short explanation for why is that I work with 16+ node Exchange deployments, so setting up a single-server script on multiple servers is a huge pain.…

Continue Reading →

Hardening Microsoft Solutions from Attacks

Take a minute to go over this post from Dirk-jan Mollema. Go ahead and read it. I’ll wait…

Did you realize how scary that kind of attack is? As an IT guy who specializes in Exchange server and loves studying security, that article scared the snot out of me. Based on my experience with organizations of all sizes I can say with a good bit of authority that almost every Exchange organization out there is probably vulnerable to this attack.…

Continue Reading →

Enabling Message Encryption in Office 365

As I mentioned in an earlier post, email encryption is a sticky thing. In a perfect world, everyone would have Opportunistic TLS enabled and all mail traffic would be automatically encrypted with STARTTLS encryption, which is a fantastic method of ensuring security of messages “in transit”. But some messages need to be encrypted “at rest” due to security policies or regulations.…

Continue Reading →

Designing Infrastructure High Availability

IT people, for some reason, seem to have an affinity towards designing solutions that use “cool” features, even when those features aren’t really necessary. This tendency sometimes leads to good solutions, but a lot of times it ends up creating solutions that fall short of requirements or leave IT infrastructure with significant short-comings in any number of areas.…

Continue Reading →

Do I need Anonymous Relay?

Problems

If you have managed an Exchange server in the past, you’ve probably been required to set things up to allow printers, applications, and other devices the ability to send email through the Exchange server. Most often, the solution to this request is to configure an Anonymous Open Relay connector. The first article I ever wrote on this blog was on that very subject: http://wp.me/pUCB5-b . …

Continue Reading →

Configuring Exchange Autodiscover

As of the release of Outlook 2016, Microsoft has chosen to begin requiring the use of Autodiscover for setting up Outlook clients to communicate with the server. This means that, moving forward, Autodiscover will need to be properly configured.

This page contains some information and some links to other posts I’ve written on the subject of Autodiscover.…

Continue Reading →