Will very large messages cause Exchange 2003 to crash

Posted on 2007-07-26
Last Modified: 2011-04-14
A client of ours recently requested that we remove the Exchange email/attachment file size restriction on their Exchange server.  I recall reading/hearing in the past that large messages or attachments would sometimes crash the exchange server.  Is this true?  Will or could messages with very large attachments cause the Exchange server to crash.

Question by:c2boss
    LVL 38

    Accepted Solution

    I have never heard of this happening.  It would have to be a huge attachment (we're talking multimegabyte size) and maybe even multiple huge attachments sent at the same time to even cause the Exchange server to hiccup unless your server is not configured adequately to handle your normal traffic.  The only situations I've ever seen that even noticeably affected the speed of an Exchange server were when someone of the idiot class decided to email a picture that was about 20MB in size to everyone in the entire company.  And then that was only for a short period of time as the server processed the unusual load.  As long as your server config is correct and you have taken the appropriate precautions to prevent spam, viruses and bots from infecting your systems, you really shouldn't have to worry about attachment sizes.
    LVL 104

    Assisted Solution

    The large message to lots of users is the main problem.
    However I have seen Exchange brought to a halt when someone tried to email an ISO to someone else. What was fun was watching the remote side reject the message so Exchange had to deal with the ISO twice.

    If the users are regularly moving large files around then they should look at something other than email, which is not really designed to do that.

    LVL 38

    Expert Comment

    by:Hypercat (Deb)
    LOL - yes, Simon, I guess there is at least one in every crowd.  That sounds like even more fun than the 20MB attachment - at least that was internal only so it didn't bounce back and forth.
    LVL 38

    Expert Comment

    by:Hypercat (Deb)
    I believe I should get a share of the points on this question, since Simon's and my answers were essentially the same.

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