How do you manage PST files when working without an Exchange server?

kwandtke used Ask the Experts™
I recently became Net Admin at a small mfg company.  The previous admin started the practice of storing PST files from Outlook (ver 97 on up) on network shares so they would be backed up.  We were (and still are) running a postfix mail server.

I'm aware that MS and everybody else I know says hosting PST's off a server is a real bad idea as I understand becuase the protocols used by Outlook are not very efficient.  When they had a small number of PSTs and they were small this worked OK.  Now the number of email enabled users increases and the files are getting larger ... I need a solution.  Before everybody tells me to get an Exchange server .. I'm working on it but management is not real keen on the idea.  

Right now I'm looking at taking all my Outlook 97 users (about half) who are generally low volume users and moving them to Thunderbird and running them IMAP.  I'd like to take the Outlook 2003 users and find a way to manage their PST files.  I don't want to do a local backup client on every machine ... I did look at a tool .. an addin .. that MS has that backs up the PST .. so we could dump the backup to the users home directory wheer it would get backed up .. but that addon does not seem to support automation .. it's just available from the File meni in Outlook.

And the last bit of good news is I'm not yet running AD .. still on an NT domain (althought my server except for DCs are 2003)..  I'm wondering what any of you might be doing.
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Top Expert 2010
Hi, kwandtke.

Microsoft's addin runs automatically each time Outlook closes.  It does not require the user to do anything except click OK when the addin asks if they want to back up their PSTs.  

Beyond that, the best suggestion I have is to use a login/logout script to copy the PSTs each time the client logs in/out.

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