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Exchange 2003 First Time Setup

Posted on 2004-04-18
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Hi Experts!

I am setting up an exchange server for the first time and have got a little stuck! I have a domain controller running windows 2000 advanced server SP4. This is the DHCP controller and the only server on the network. The network has approximately 30 computers on it, all running windows 2000. a 1Mbit broadband line is about to be installed, with a router that comes as part of the deal. We shall call the local domain "domain.co.uk". This is also registered via clara.net ISP

I have set up exchange server linked to active directory and all internal mail works perfectly. The problem I am having is sending email to the outside world and receiving from the outside world. Having spoken to clara.net, they seem to think that my exchange server needs a real world IP address. Is the correct? If this is the case, then I see my self needing two routers - one which has NAT for all clients to access the internet and a NON-NAT router so the exchange server can Have a real world IP address.

I am happy to have the mail sent through the ISPs mail server, or sending mail straight from the exchange-server. Whichever seems to be the best option!

The final point - If I need to go with the server having a real-world IP address, then does it need two network cards - one with a local IP address and one with the real-world IP address.

Incidently - IP address of domain controller is 192.168.254.2
IP address of current router (NAT) is 192.168.254.254
DHCP range - 192.168.254.11 ~ 99

If there is any info that I have left out, please let me know.

Many thanks in advance!
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Question by:Ice123
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Expert Comment

by:rhandels
ID: 10852827
Hi,

Firts of all, never give your mail server an outside ip address on the NIC itself, this isn't best practice, here is what you should do.

Make sure you have an ip address in your external range where the mail can be delivered, something like.
150.150.150.150   -->  mail.domain.co.uk. Let your provider create an MX record that all mail for mail.domain.co.uk is forwarded to your external ip address 150.150.150.150. After that, make a rule on your firewall or router to NAT the external address of 150.150.150.150 to the ip address of your internal mailserver, the the mail will be recieved to your mailserver and your mailserver is safe..

For sending e-mail with Exchange server, you can use two options, either mail it to an upstream mailserver (e.g. the ISP's mailserver), this isn't best practice, but is possible. You can also resolve the DNS domain names where you send your e-mail to through an external DNS server. Make sure your mailserver has an external DNS server setting and let the mailserver do his own DNS resolving. Also make sure that your firewall / router let's DNS request from teh mailserver, through..

If there are any questions about this one, please ask..
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Author Comment

by:Ice123
ID: 10855407
thanks for the very quick response rhandels. This is most helpful. I just have one final question though. My broadband connection does not arrive until next week. Can I use the PCI modem in the Exchange server PC to get mail via dialup? If so, how do you do this? It doesnt seem very obvious!

thanks again
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Expert Comment

by:rhandels
ID: 10858030
Hi,

You can use a PCI modem to do this, but i wouldn't advise you this. Normally, after making a new connection, you a dynamicaly assigned ip address, so your provider's MX records would be right. So if you would like to have incoming mail. i'd wait for the broadband connection, cause normally this comes with a  static ip address.

If you have more questions, please ask...
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Author Comment

by:Ice123
ID: 10862405
The ISP are going to set up a static IP address for dial up for me. Unfortunately, I cannot do without email for a week - this is simply not an option! The company sends / receives approximately 700-800 emails per day (not incluing spam!) and is critical to the way the business is run!

I was told there is a plugin available for using Dialup - but cannot find one! Please could you assist in providing instruction for getting email either by POP3 from the ISP or using the mx record method and static IP on dialup.

thanks again,
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Expert Comment

by:rhandels
ID: 10862882
Hi,

What do you have in front of the network now?? Is it a firewall or a router where the PCI modem is installed??? Maybe there is a plug in for the router/firewall you are using right know. Maybe they ment a cisco router with a modem interface build in. But i am a Exchange specialist (Network more or less) but i don't know that much about routers.

If i know what you are using right know, then, i might even know how to help you with this problem. The static IP address on the dial up is nice, so you can let mail be recieved on that one... But 700 to 800 mails a day receiving on a dial in 56Kbps connection??? We get 1000 e-mails a day and are using a 2Mbit broadband connection. I don't know if that dial up line is gonna help ya...

POP3 e-mail for the week is also a solution. This might be easier. Make sure you a Internet e-mail option to you Outlook profile and make sure that the pop3 and smtp server are pointed to the mail server of your ISP. Also make sure that al pc's on the network can contact your ISP's mailserver...
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Author Comment

by:Ice123
ID: 10863209
I have MS windows 2000 Advanced server, running exchange server 2003. All PCs are clients of the server and are connected via basic unmanaged switches (3com). The server has a PCI modem installed. There are no gateways / routers at present. Have I understood this correcly? I cannot configure exchange server to dial up to my ISP and get my email and feed it into exchange server?

Sorry for being picky - I dont really understand all this - it is new to me! If the above is at all possible, please could you detail how.

thanks
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Accepted Solution

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rhandels earned 250 total points
ID: 10866200
Hi,

This is a tricky one. Normally in front of the network there has to be something like a Router of firewall which manages connection with the internet. If your Exchange server has a dial up modem, then this would be your router/firewall. This isn't best practice. It's a very big security risk...

I'd think you'd better try and get that router form your ISP and let a modem being build in. Unfortenately, as i said before, i don't know that much about routers, still working on that part...

You can also try and install RRAS on the Exchange server, it can take for your routing and connection problem with the 56K modem. I can tell you how to install RRAS or give you some links, but i think that that's all that i can do...

http://www.discoveryvip.com/Courseware/Courses/e_mcse_wt0210.asp
http://www.discoveryvip.com/Courseware/Courses/e_mcse_wt0450.asp
http://www.findarticles.com/cf_dls/m0FOX/5_5/61370727/p1/article.jhtml

http://www.alloy.com.au/web_download/Entia/DRIVERS/W2k_Firm_Drv_08_2000/5536-DM.pdf
(it's a PDF as you can see)

Hope this helps in any way....
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Author Comment

by:Ice123
ID: 10928679
ok - so I have now got adsl installed and everything seemed to be working OK for about 5mins after a reboot! When the clients open outlook, it just says exchange server unavailable. Any ideas as to why this may be? Exchange itself seems to be running OK as far as I can tell. If I reboot the machine - it works for another 5 minutes or so! ARGGGG!

thanks
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LVL 23

Expert Comment

by:rhandels
ID: 10929415
So the people at first can connect to the Exchange server??
Do they have the mails in their mailbox?? Can they mail each other???
What do you see on the Exchange Server. Any strange things in the Event Viewer.
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Author Comment

by:Ice123
ID: 10930245
yes, everybody can use exchange server. For internal mail, external mail inbound and outbound.

In the system log, I seem to have Loads of Warnings about MrxSmb, but other than that, nothing particularly unusual.

I am almost at the point of starting again with the installation!!!
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Author Comment

by:Ice123
ID: 10930501
I have tested the DNS server (resides on the same computer as Exchange server). It seems to work OK when exchange server is not. (tested using nslookup)
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LVL 23

Expert Comment

by:rhandels
ID: 10936201
Hi,

Could you please be more specific about this problem?? The Event that shows up in the server. Let's not reïnstall the server jet....
You can try at this link, maybe it will help.

http://www.eventid.net/display.asp?eventid=3034&source=
http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;263142

Could you also try and check the performance of the server?? Or when nobody can log in, try just logging in 1 user. Maybe even after reïnstalling, the problem might show up again.
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