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front end exchange server 2003, simply question

robinyanwang asked
Last Modified: 2010-04-07
Hi, we current have a exchange server 2003 in network. we would like to build a front end server for it.
I know that front end server wont have larger files space since it can not host mailboxes, but I wuold like to consultant with you about the general system requirement for the new server hardware. we have about 150 users by the way and most of then running outlook client.

also, how do you guys add a front end server into current network?

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Andres PeralesPrinciple Engineer

Any machine with at least 2GB or more RAM and at least a 2gHz processor should be fine.  This machine should be in a DMZ.  Then you will need to allow this server to connect to the DC on the inside of your network, to join domain and be able to connect to inside 2003 exchange server.

Once you do that, then you just need to check the this is a frontend exchange server.  And you inside server as the backend.  Then you will need to configure you firewall to accept connections to that frontend exchange server for OWA, OMA and RPC / HTTPs access if you are going to use those.

You clients on the inside will still connect to your mailbox server i.e. server on the inside of the network.


how many NICs needed for the front end server?
one in DMZ, one in LAN?
can I use NAT, then I only need one NIC?
Top Expert 2008

>>This machine should be in a DMZ.

No, it shouldn't.

Robin, why do you want a FrontEnd Server?


my manager asks me to build one since other office has it...

so, one NIC on DMZ has a public IP address and one NIC on LAN has a private IP address?
why I can not NAT it so I only need one NIC?

Top Expert 2008

>>my manager asks me to build one since other office has it...

Do you have more than one mailbox server?  If not, then you don't need a front end server.

If you REALLY want something for increased security, you need an ISA server - not an Exchange Server.  Putting an Exchange Server in the DMZ will SIGNIFICANTLY WEAKEN security.  If that is what your manager wants you to do, and you are unwilling to question it, then I wish you the best of luck with it.


i only have one newly built exchange server for now which only in LAN with a private IP address and using smtp relay to our firewall for in/out smtp mail.
my manager wants this server in lan only and build another front end server without mailbox and then people could access this front end server using OWA, also need some SSL certificate....I am not sure about that yet.
Top Expert 2008

>>then people could access this front end server using OWA

Why not just use NAT to the existing server?  You don't need a front end for OWA to work.


that is what I think...
Top Expert 2008
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thanks and I will talk to my manager about it.

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