Outlook 2003 Practical Capacity Limits

I have read many articles stating that Outlook 2003 has a 20GB PST Limit, and several that state you can have as many folders as you would like as long as you keep the per folder count under 5000.

Here's my issue.   I have a Director of IT who has a 2.8GB mailbox.  Not huge, but good sized.   What's interesting is that he has close to 95K email messages.

His mailbox performance isn't terrible.   And for the most part he's happy.   However, he's discovered that his "Advanced Find" doesn't work properly.  Basically, it finds some of the items in his mailbox but not all of them.    I have exported his mailbox to a PST, imported it into another message store and the results are the same.    I have deleted and created the Exchange 2007 Index.  There's no issues there.   Advanced Find works fine on other smaller mailboxes.

What's the breaking point?   Where does Microsoft say "We know it works  up to this many items, and this size.  Beyond this point, your on your own?"
Rod_NewcombAsked:
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SembeeConnect With a Mentor Commented:
Microsoft have never said anything to my knowledge in this respect, other than their guidance of items in the mailbox and the maximum size of the OST file. There are differing opinions, but it is known that the larger mailbox the performance starts to show. Outlook 2003 isn't too bad with large mailboxes, Outlook 2007 is a different matter.

Simon.
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Dave StringfellowIT managerCommented:
Theroecticly you have no limit, but i have a 2Gb limit on all my customers mailboxs. anything over and you see large perforamce issues. get GFI mail archiver if he MUST keep all that mail.
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Rod_NewcombAuthor Commented:
Oh beleive me, I want to put in limits.  But Microsoft can't/won't give us any guideance on "how much is too much."

I've read several blogs posts about "Keep your Inbox, deleted, Sent and Calendar under 5,000 items" etc, but nothing like "When you have over X amount of items, we can't guarantee features willl work as expected."

So, I have been on hold with MS support for 2 hours now.   They can't find anything along these lines either.  So they are going to bounce me up to the Exchange team.

I know he has too many items, and I am sure he knows he has too many items.  But our upper management refused to instill Quota or Limit's unless Microsoft comes straight out and says "XGB or X amount of items are our supported limits".

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Dave StringfellowIT managerCommented:
Well i have some users with 8Gb mailboxes, and over 80000 items, and it works, but it is slow
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cheetsCommented:
I have a project, where ,my techncal staff are adamant that 11TB of PST files can be imported into Exchange 2007. We will not be upgrading the client side, which will remian as Outlook 2003. I am not convinced, considering some of these PST files are around the 2GB mark already, and we even found one standing at 19GB.

What do you think will happen if we take the technical route on this?
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SembeeCommented:
cheets - this is an old question which should have been closed months ago. Unlike a forum it is not possible to "bump" questions back up the list. The only people who will see your post are those that have already participated. Instead you should post your question as a new question in the Exchange Server Zone which will allow other experts the chance to see the question and respond.

Simon
Exchange Server Zone Advisor.
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