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mail from one domain to all users

Posted on 2006-10-27
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Last Modified: 2010-04-19
Hi,

I have a question about distributing e-mail from one domain to all users. I am new here and I'll try to explain the situation as good as possible. I have recently installed a server with SBS 2003 within our organization (5 employees). Our current situation is that we have a domain and we use a pop3 account with 5 aliasses. We all connect to this pop3 account and this way everyone can read everyones mail. This is a situation we want to keep.

With the server the goal is to have our e-mail forwarded by our ISP and use a smarthost to send mail. I have created 5 users on the server and I had to fill in the aliasses. Now e-mail gets delivered according to the alias and it is not possible to read the mail addressed to my colleagues. I thought I had the solution by giving everyone all 5 e-mailaddresses but when I tried this I got a message like "address already exists". Logical because another user (my colleague) has this e-mail address.

I have searched the solutions already available but could not find a satisfying one. So can someone help me? What is the best way to make sure that all mail to our domain can be read by all users?

Thanks and greetz Tim (NL)
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Question by:Timmos
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by:pdxsrw
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What about leaving it so that each person has their own email...but sending the "group" mail to a public folder that everyone can access?

Or you could give each user rights to the other mailboxes ....

- pdxsrw
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by:Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy
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First, welcome to EE.  Second, although I realize you have asked a very direct question, I feel that it would be a huge disservice to you if I just provided your solution without telling you that "This is a situation we want to keep" goes against every sensability in operational management.  Generally companies invest in technology because they recognize that it will provide them with greater efficiencies which will either lower their costs or increase their revenues... or both.  So, please accept this response in the spirit it's offered, and if after reading it you still just want to keep doing it the way you've always done it, then let me know and I'll help you do that.

Since you have just invested in one of the most incredible pieces of technology ever created for small business (in my opinion, of course), it makes very little sense to bind yourself to old practices that are grossly inneficient. My guess is that it's not the actual practice of reading everyone's mail that you want to preserve, but rather the results you have achieved in the past by using such a practice.  In other words... you made the decision to use aliases and a shared mailbox because it solved a particular problem for you in the past.

If I'm correct about that... then it would only make sense for you to elaborate on the problem you are trying to solve by having everyone share a single mailbox rather than trying to get SBS to adapt to a fix you created due to limitations of older technology.  Even though your company is very small (as is mine and as are those of my clients), it may seem as though allowing everyone to read everyon'e mail is just easier than creating some other way of keeping everyone informed.  I'll tell you without any doubt in my mind that there are MUCH easier, more efficient, and just plain better ways to do this.  Wouldn't you rather have your staff members spending more time providing superior customer service or more time selling, or more time doing ANYTHING that would benefit your organization?

If so, then please take a moment to explain why you have done this in the past, and what your ultimate goal is in having only a single mailbox.  It would be helpful for you to provide an example or two of typical situations which are affected by this.

Thanks so much.

Jeff
TechSoEasy

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by:Timmos
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Thank you both for your answers. First pdxsrw your suggestions puzzled me a bit. Although they seem worth trying, I am not an expert who understands rightaway how to put these suggestions into practice.

Jeff you triggered me and made me curious to more advanced ways to share information. So why do we use 1 mailbox? Actually we were offered 5 mailboxes by our ISP but we decided to use just one with 7 aliasses (us 5 and info@ and webmaster@). I will try to explain our current practive. At this moment we are involved in 5 projects for which 2 of us act as 'front-office' (and are therefore on the road a lot). For each of these projects we get questions and requests from 10-15 team members addressed to our two 'front-office' employees. Behind the scenes there are 3 other employees to help process these questions and answer these from their own alias. After informing the others (at the office, through mail or telephone) and depending on the nature of the question or whoever is available rightaway, one of us takes on the question.

It happens that someone does not check his e-mail for a couple of hours or even a whole day. We chose to use just one mailbox so that questions can always be answered within the hour by someone. I am very curious about other ways to keep everybody informed because we do experience negative side effects. Things slow down because everyone has something to say, a flood of newsletters because everyone is interested in something else and misunderstandings about who will answer (or has answered) the e-mail.

Thanks for your time

Tim
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Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy earned 250 total points
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You really need to check out www.groove.net, it seems like what you are doing would be a PERFECT fit.  Groove is now part of Microsoft Office (it was developed by Ray Ozzie who is taking Bill Gate's position at MS) so it will integrate very well with what you are already using.

The problems you have noted with a shared email address are certainly costly... because not only do you have to wade through unwanted newsletters... you very well could be missing that important message that you did this for in the first place.

If not Groove, then at least you can use Exchange rules to keep others informed.  Rules can provide specific actions for specific email messages... such as if a message comes from anyone @domain.com then have a copy of that message also sent to user B.  There are almost limitless ways to use rules that would greately help you to take care of these things.

Jeff
TechSoEasy
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by:Timmos
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Thanks for your answer. I have taken a look at groove and the demo and it seems promissing. I considered downloading the beta version but I decided to wait just a little bit longer. It has been a heavy period with installing the server, learning many many new things and particulalry the aggrevation of thing going wrong. Actually SBS is not the problem but the McAfee entreprise antivirussoftware is still driving me mad. Sorry a little off-topic.

Although I did not get a direct answer to my question I think I have learned enough so far. I have considered rules but it is to difficult to define keywords or come up with a good lists of e-mail addresses. That is why I decided to share all boxes and opening these when outlook is started. Maybe this is a temporary solution because I am still discovering new things already available withing SBS. Your comments got me thinking about our current practices and I think we will slowly move to better ones.

Thank again for your time,

greetings Tim
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by:Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy
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Tim,

I only use Trend Micro Client Server Messaging Suite for Small Business... generally a better product... but they all have their problems.

As for not getting a direct answer to your question... sometimes the question asked is not really the one that needs to be answered...

Consider this story...

Two men were walking in a field together, one of which was blind.  They stopped for a moment and the blind man asked the other if he threw a stone in the direction they were walking would there be any possibility of it hitting something?  The other man said, "No".  The blind man immediately began to run as fast as he could... and before the other man could even get a word out of his mouth, the blind man ran over the edge of a 500 foot cliff.

Quite often a question is asked that is based on the solution you are trying to visualize, but what's really important is to describe your ultimate goal, and let others help you to arrive at the appropriate solution.

Good luck with SBS!

Jeff
TechSoEasy


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