Exchange 2003 Enterprise adding addtional mail store

Hello Experts,

We are using Exchange 2003 Enterprise on a member server. Currently we have a single mail store.  The Priv1 and Pub1 are approximately 28 gigs combined at the present time. We recently configured RPC/HTTP (Thank You Simon) and are in the process of rolling it out to outside branches. I know that this is going to cause our mail store to grow. We have approximate 125 users in our outer branches and presently they are using up very little space. At what point would it be prudent to create a second store on the same server, move users mailboxes, and the best approach of doing so. We have around 230 gigs free on the server so space is not a concern (yet).  Is it better to leave it in one larger store or split it up for maintenance reasons, if one store was corrupt it would only take down a portion of the company during a repair. Or would the Exchange Server be a little more finicky with multiple stores.

Any comments would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you,

Wendell
wdfngAsked:
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ryangormanCommented:
Multiple smaller stores give better control than a single monolithic store. Maintenance is better because you'll only disrupt a potion of your users when/if you need take a store offline. You can place different policies on each mailbox store, and so can manage mailbox limits per store.

You should take advantage of storage groups and place your new mailbox stores into their own storage group[1]. Be aware that Exchange 2003 Enterprise limits you to four storage groups. Ideally, each mailbox store and storage group's transaction logs should be on their own mirrored disks.

Members of distribution groups that are either large in size or receive large emails should be placed into the same mailbox store. This makes mail delivery more efficient.[1] This is the model that Exchange 2007 encourages.

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ryangormanCommented:
The last paragraph should read

Members of distribution groups that are either large in size or receive large emails should be placed into the same mailbox store. This makes mail delivery more efficient.

[1] This is the model that Exchange 2007 encourages.
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SembeeCommented:
I tend to split things up, although your user number doesn't really justify using the number of storage groups and mailbox stores.

Therefore I would suggest splitting it now, before things get too large. Find a way to group the users in to four (location, job role etc) and then move them about.

Simon.
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wdfngAuthor Commented:
Simon,

Are you suggesting that I spilt it into four stores? We have a little over two hundred users currently, and were going to split them by location/dept. Being that we do not currently have multiple spindles to separate the stores on as Ryan suggested (Thank You Ryan), Is it common practice to create the new stores and transaction logs in a separate directory and not the default MDBDATA that the current store is in?


Thank you,
Wendell
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SembeeCommented:
If the server has been built to best practises then you will not have either the logs or the databases in mdbdata as they will be on their drives/partitions.

Transaction logs are grouped by Storage Groups, so if you have four mailbox stores in the storage group then they will all be using the same set of transaction logs.
However the mailbox stores are in their own files. I tend to put these into their own folders, purely to make identification easier.
I usually create a folder called Exchange Databases and then sub folders of that.

The key thing is to have the stores and logs on separate drives - otherwise the server will just be thrashing itself.

Simon.
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wdfngAuthor Commented:
Thnak You both!!
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