Well, the Microsoft Exchange Conference 2012 is in the books and what a great conference it was.  With all of the Wave 15 products leasing in the next year, there was a lot of information to cover. The primary purpose of this conference was of course to talk about Exchange 2013, but there was quite a bit of information on how the other products integrate.

Over the next few weeks I will be creating multiple blogs on various topics that were covered during MEC.  If there is a particular area of interest please let me know.

@ServusDave #IamMEC

When Exchange 2003 came out, it offered Outlook Anywhere, although it was called “RPC/HTTPS”. This was an all or nothing service. In other words, if you set up Outlook Anywhere on the server then every user was able to use it. This poses a data security risk because users could connect to their mailbox from any Outlook client and download a copy of their mailbox, without using VPN or any other security checks on the remote system.

In Exchange 2007 (after SP1) and 2010, Outlook Anywhere permissions and capabilities are more granular.  You can set up Outlook Anywhere within the environment and then limit the ability on a per user basis. 

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There is a bug in the creation process for Dynamic Distribution Groups (DDG) in Exchange 2010.  When you use the Exchange Management Shell to create a DDG and specify the Organizational Unit (OU) where the DDG should reside in Active Directory, you must also specify the –RecipientContainer to search for that DDG.  Otherwise the DDG Recipient Container defaults to the OU where the DDG was created.

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One of my customers has been weighing the options of using Lync Online vs Lync On-Premise. There are a lot of questions about the feature sets available between the two offerings. The Microsoft Office 365 community has posted this chart for review.

http://community.office365.com/en-us/w/lync/480.aspx

The following matrix compares features across the delivery models for Lync Server 2010 (on-premises), Lync Online, and Office Communications Online (“OC Online”). Read More →

When making changes to Active Directory, like Schema updates, it is recommended to make a backup of AD. It is also recommended to perform these changes on an offline Domain Controller, perform your tests, and the only then replicate the changes to the remaining DCs. The topic of this article is about backing up AD.

NTDSutil provides a mechanism to perform backups on your domain controllers.

  1. Open an elevated command prompt and run NTDSutil.
  2. Run activate instance ntds to set the active instance to “ntds“.
  3. Type snapshot.
  4. Then Create.

For more details on NTDSutil: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc753343(v=WS.10).aspx

 

One of my customers has Lync deployment with multiple sites and three Lync pools. If I try to use the Lync Control Panel to determine the number of users per site I am limited to 200 results. This obvious is not sufficient if you have more than 200 users in a site. Never mind that I think it’s shortsighted not to be able to modify the number of results in Control Panel, but never the less, PowerShell to the rescue!!! I took an old Exchange script and modified it to pull all users and group them by RegistrarPool and then sorted them by Name. Here is the little cmdlet.

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The star of last year’s product roadmap was Office 365. Microsoft this year looks likely to pivot from the public cloud to the private cloud, while also shipping staples like SQL Server and releasing major betas — and possibly final versions — of blockbusters including Windows 8 tablet, client and server, and Office 15.

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