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RPC over HTTP with outlook

Does anyone know how outlook determins if it is on a fast or slow link when using RPC over HTTP.  I see where the options are to change it and i have the reg key to change the values for the slow or fast but how does it determine these values.  Is it based off of ping time or something else?

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hamel01
Asked:
hamel01
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3 Solutions
 
flyguybobCommented:
I am downloading the following document to attempt to find an answer regarding how it determines the values:
Client Network Traffic with Exchange Server 2003  
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/prodtechnol/exchange/2003/clinettraf.mspx

Generally the first packet to go to a RPC over HTTP(s) client is a 401.1 - Access Denied message, if I am not mistaken.  I think that message is used in calculating the latency...but, again, I havent read through the client network traffic doc.
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flyguybobCommented:
I just went through the document and could not find where it notes how Outlook determines if the connection is fast or slow.
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xqsCommented:
Outlook determines a user's connection speed by checking the network adapter speed on the user's computer, as supplied by the operating system. Reported network adapter speeds of 128 KB or lower are defined as slow connections.
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SembeeCommented:
Personally - I don't bother with trying to get Outlook to guess whether it is on a fast or slow connection. It is too easily confused.

I configure all of my RPC over HTTPS connections to use HTTPS for both types of connections and then make sure that it works everywhere (inside and outside). I have been deploying it that way since day 1 and have had no problems with performance or users access.

Simon.
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hamel01Author Commented:
Sembee,  How do you configure it if you only have one front end but a back end at 3 different sites (locations in the country).  thats what i am having a hard time figuring out.  I would like to do it how you are doing it.

Mike
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flyguybobCommented:
Mike -

I am not Sembee, but what I would do is setup an Exchange server as a front-end, even if it is a Virtual Server instance or a VMWare Server instance and load Exchange on it.  I have done this on a few occasions and it works like a champ.  However, this means another $600 - $800 to license Exchange 2003 Standard for the FE server.  Some of the sting is taken out since you only need one certificate.

Note that RPC over HTTPS does not work with a wildcard certificate, or a certificate where it is *.company.com.

However, that is not your goal at this point....
You could setup all three servers to act as back-end servers, open the appropriate firewall ports, get three external certificates (GeoTrust is recommended) and then have instructions for your client(s) at each site to connect to their appropriate Exchange server.

Oh, and Sembee has a GREAT PAGE for RPC/HTTPs:
http://www.amset.info/exchange/rpc-http.asp
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SembeeCommented:
Single frontend to multiple backends is fine. You don't have to do any registry changes. Simply enable the options in ESM, load the certificate on to the frontend server and point all clients at the frontend in the HTTP proxy configuration.

Exchange does the rest.
However - if you are using a single frontend serving backends located elsewhere then you may have bandwidth issues.
I have just designed a four site Exchange deployment for a client and in there I have a frontend on each physical location.

Simon.
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flyguybobCommented:
Sembee and Mike -

Good eyes.  I definitely misread the follow-up question!

Bob
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hamel01Author Commented:
Simon,
  is there a way to make clients connect to a backend exchange server that is a part of the RPC topology without going through the frontend?  I have been trying to do this but i notice that IIS on the backend does not have the RPC directories listed.  Is there a way around this with out a front end at each site?  Can i just install a cert on the backend and point the clients to it with the correct configuration?

Mike
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SembeeCommented:
I haven't done that before, but I can't see any reason why it wouldn't work.

However Microsoft want the feature to work on an FE/BE scenario.

In Microsoft's ideal world, RPC over HTTPS would only be used outside of the network. Inside it would work over TCP/IP to the backend holding the mailbox. That is the idea of the slow and fast connections. Unfortunately what Microsoft didn't take in to account was the growth of home networks, which will confuse Outlook in to thinking it is on a LAN instead of going across the internet.

You would probably have to change the settings in ESM to put all the servers on the setting of not in an RPC over HTTPS configuration. Then configure the registry settings by hand - with different settings on the FE than the BE.

Simon.
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hamel01Author Commented:
Simon,
  I would only need to do this to two of the servers.  One of which is also a DC.  DO you have any references to where is can find the changed settings and Registries settings?  Thanks so much!
Mike
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SembeeCommented:
All of the registry settings are outlined on my web site. The link is above.

Simon.
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hamel01Author Commented:
What about the RPC settings for IIS or does that not matter?
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SembeeCommented:
Nothing needs to be changed in IIS. You just need to ensure that the RPC Proxy is installed on the machine (it is in Add/Remove programs, Windows Components).

Simon.
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hamel01Author Commented:
Thanks!  Thanks what i was forgetting!!

Mike
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hamel01Author Commented:
Simon,
  I ran through your steps and am having issues.  I did all the reg keys and added the rpc over HTTP service to the servers but when i run MS's rpcping tool it get  an error 12007 returned in the winhttpsend request
ping failed

The proxy setting is disabled.  

Any ideas?
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SembeeCommented:
What do you mean by "The proxy setting is disabled"? Do you mean the setting in ESM?
I haven't tried it with an FE/BE going straight to the backend server - and I don't have access to an FE/BE to test.

Which set of registry keys did you use? You should have used the Separate Exchange Server and Domain Controller - NOT the FE/BE settings.

Simon.
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hamel01Author Commented:
When i run the RPCping test it comes back with the proxy setting is disabled and then give me the error ping failed.  Ye si used the seperate exchange server and DC

I have the rpc proxy installed and the reg keys changed.  There shouldn't be any thing else right?



Mike
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SembeeCommented:
There shouldn't be anything else - but as I originally said - I have never tried it and I don't have access to a site where I want to try it with.

Reading back through the question - you are going to have some issues with this configuration anyway. If you are trying to use it with separate backend servers, then you are going to have to expose all of the backend servers directly to the Internet. Otherwise users will have to keep changing their settings when they go off site.

Simon.
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hamel01Author Commented:
Simon,
  I was kind of wondering about that.  The issue we are having is that user at site A doesnt have a fornt end.  When they leave the office they will have to connect to our front end which i know is possible but as i have read outlook has an issue with swiching between fast and slow connections so thats why we want to use RPC even while they are in the building but want them to use their local server instead of having to come up to our site to connect.  Is this sounding like we will have to have a front end at each site?

Mike
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SembeeCommented:
If you are already in the frontend/backend topology, then you may well have to consider a frontend on the second site.
Although if this is just for one user, why not move their mailbox to the server that has a frontend in front of it?

Simon.
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hamel01Author Commented:
Simon,
  Well it's all my fault.  I found my error.  When putting in the msstd: value i was putting in just the netbois name and not the fqdn.  Switched it and works like a charm.  Thanks for all the help!
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