Mail enabled public folder vs mailbox

I'm looking for pros and cons about using a shared mailbox vs a mail enabled public folder on Exchange 2003.  

The purpose is to have a single point of contact for customer communications; either solution will use a single address for responses.

I have an existing mailbox shared physically via a dedicated pc - I'm considering just giving rights to those individuals that need to access the mailbox.  But....would I gain anything by switching over to a public folder?  Would I lose any functionality?

Since I'm looking more for feedback than a particular solution, I'm setting the question for 500 points, to be split between the first few insightful answers.

Thanks for your help.
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There are no big cons about setting up a public folder it just makes it easier because the user dosnet have to open 2 mail boxes. The only con i can think of is when users reply to a message in a public folder the sent message goes in their sent folder so the other people cant see whats been sent in reply.

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If the user's have their own mailbox, it doesn't matter which solution you use, you are still going to have the problem of where the sent items go. You can get third party tools to deal with that issue if it is important.
Otherwise it is just a matter of personal preference, as the permissions can be set the same for both solutions.

Some people prefer the public folder method as it is easy to add and remove access and for a manager to monitor.


I'd like to say that  one of  PF's approach contra is inabilty to see a message "global" read/unread status. With shared mailbox, the messages are bold when they are unread, and they are unbolded as _someone_ reads them. AFAIK, the public folders don't really do this.

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