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Archiving emails

dwelldon
dwelldon asked
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Last Modified: 2011-09-20
We currently have a small business server 2003, with exchange 2003 SP2.

The question I have is about archiving emails, currently we have a mixed way of using pst files and public folders. I am wanting to do away with both or just use public folders.

Archiving has now become a priority because we need to keep all emails even those with massive attachments.

I know there is a limit on the size of public folders which is 16 gig with SP2. It can be increased, with a registry tweak but is this compatible with SBS 2003 version of exchange?

What archiving software is there available that is easy to use for end users, can anyone recommend any.

The company is growing at vast rate and soon will out grow our SBS box, I am wanting to wait until exchange 2007 is available.
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Expert of the Year 2007
Expert of the Year 2006

Commented:
The registry tweaks for the information store size apply to SBS as well as the full version of Exchange.
Exchange 2007 is available now - although most people are recommending holding off for another couple of months to allow third party tools to come online. You may want to think about a transition pack so that you can spin Exchange 2003 out to its own machine.

Archiving software comes in many different flavours.
Basically there are two types.

Journaling applications. These are the cheapest form as they take a copy of the email as it passes through the server then store it elsewhere, usually an SQL database. What they don't do is remove the email from the mailbox and leave a stub behind so that it is transparent to the user.
Interface is usually a web frontend to search the email. GFI Mail Archiver is a good example of that, and one that I have deployed a number of times.

The traditional archiving applications such as Commvault (or whatever it is called now) which actually connect to the Exchange server, extract contents from the mailboxes and leave a stub. They are almost transparent to the users, but are much more expensive.

Considering you are on SBS and want to move to E2007, I would suggest GFI Mail Archiver. Use the tools in the application to populate it with the data that you currently have. As it is standalone (it doesn't actually integrated in to Exchange) it should work with E2007 without any issues. Put it on its own server and just move everything around it.

Simon.

Author

Commented:
I understand about the registry tweaks, not sure if thats a good idea or not.

The concensus of opinion, is that we don't want to archive all the email, just what the users decide needs to be. So something like GFI mail isn't really an option.

The ideal solution would be to keep public folders and archive them.
Expert of the Year 2007
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Author

Commented:
The users are very good at archiving to be honest with you.

I do enforce a 150meg limit on their mailboxes.

In which case it maybe that we look at some sort of case management system rather than a archiving system.

Commented:
I would recommend Symantec Enterprise Vault if you are looking for a 3rd party solution.  I can easily say I have more than 2000 users who didn't even know what a computer was until the begining of 2007.  And they were able to understand how to retrieve their archived e-mails etc.  Very simple product to install and administer.

Author

Commented:
I am looking for a system that allows the flexibility of public folders or system that can archive public folders, which are then still accessible by users.

Commented:
Then Enterprise Vault is your answer.  Have you looked into this product yet?  I believe it was rated in the top for quite some time and I am sure it is still there.

Author

Commented:
I am having a look now. I never got chance yesterday. Pity you can't download a trial version
Expert of the Year 2007
Expert of the Year 2006

Commented:
Last time I looked at EV it was rather Expensive. As in it will probably be more expensive than your current server.

Simon.

Author

Commented:
Yeah, you are right its too rich for my blood.

I am going to trial GFI

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