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Ralph ScharpingFlag for Germany

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Performance: Standard vs. Enterprise

Good morning.

I would like to know:
Does it make any difference in performance, if I devide a given numer of users into four postoffices using an Enterprise license of exchange or if I leave them all in one database using a Standard license of Exchange 2003.

I have some performance trouble which only shows up once in a while.  I am using four storage groups.  Total count of mailboxes is roughly 100.  Total size of database files is 15G for the largest an 2G for the smallest, an overall sum of 28G among the four databases.  
Hardware is Fujitsu-Siemens RX300 S2 with 2x Xeon 3.0GHz, 4GB RAM, 4x300GB 10'000 U/min SCA-Disk in RAID-5 volume storing the databases.  Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 and Exchange 2003 Enterprise SP2.  The machine is running no SQL.

All users connect using Terminal Services.  Nobody is using caching mode (naturally).  About twice a week users complain saying that it takes 45 seconds to change folders in Outlook or 2 minutes to save a 2MB attachment to disk.
All users are local, there is no WAN involved.  

I have never seen the error.  Whenever I connect to the console of the server, user report the problem as "gone".  Performance monitoring tools show no significant change in memory or processor usage.

This has been going on for months - it comes and goes with the weather so it seems.

I appreciate any help.
Regards from Germany
Avatar of MichaelVH
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Hallo Ralph,

I don't think changing from standard to enterprize will solve any issues.
Yes, the enterprise has no (less) limits than the standard, but works just in the same way. And as it seems to me, you certainly wouldn't need an enterprise.

When the users report the "error" can you see anything in the event logs on the TS?

Avatar of Ralph Scharping


Hi Michael.

I guess this was confusing:
I am ALREADY using Enterprise and I am asking if my four databases might be causing the server to respond slower.
There are unfortunately no errors logged - neither on the TS nor on the Exchange server.


sorry about that, it's still early in the morning :)
Given the current config of your server and the number of mailboxes / SG's on your server, I'm quite confident to say that you shouldn't have any performance hits becuase of that configuration. We're running about 600+ mailboxes on a server that is less performant as yours :)

Could you narrow the issue of your users down? What I mean is: when they have the problem of "slow" reponsiveness, is there another process running on the server (cleanup or something else?)

Tough one.
about a month ago I installed an additional system (RX100S5 Quad-Core) in the network, that took over all tasks other than exchange and file and print.  There used to be a MSSQL-Instance that was used by only two users but allocated 1.3GB of RAM.  Along with another Sybase application it moved to the new machine. That improved the issue somewhat, but lags still occur.
My real problem is that no errors are logged, the machine is running stable, it does not seem to have any pain and task manager does not show *anything* of note.  The only thing worth mentioning ist that the machine takes about 30-45 minutes to boot.  After I log on, SA complains that the AD domain ist not available.  If I try again a few Minutes later it starts fine and does its job continously for as many months as you wish.

Would it make matters better or worse if I do away with three of the four databases?
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Hi Michael,

thanks - I guess I woll take a deeper look at AD then.