I am fairly new to Exchange/Windows server systems and would like to be led in the right direction regarding data protection on Exchange 2003. Specifically I am looking at all options with regard to restoring a failed server. What data absolutely must be backed up for a succesful restore. The message store(s) I assume are required but I am also hearing that the transaction logs should be backed up as well. What else should be protected? It is also recommended to house the transaction files on a redundant storage system such as RAID 1 or better. How often are transaction logs updated and why cant they just be maintained with the backup of the message stores?
At a minimum what we be required for a succesful restore? Assuming I have a failover site, can you recommend an economical way to cluster/load balance scenario. Lastly, does clustering require both servers to be of the same hardware specs?
Any recommended reading on clustering/load balancing other than from Microsoft?
Lots of questions so I will award 500 for the best information in the areas concerned.