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Bandwidth consumption from sharing calendars across network?

Posted on 2009-02-16
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Hi. We have 9 locations within the State. Most of our employees are at Corp. 1 and Corp 2 which are just miles from each other. The rest are scattered across the State. We use Microsoft Exhcange 2003 and all of the clients are on various versions of Office. Our sales manager wants us to share out his calendar so all 50 sales people across our network can see his calendar, and he wants to be able to see theres. We are concered about bandwith. Does anyone know aprox. how much bandwith this will consume?
Our locations all have T1's in between. In between our Corp 1 and 2 we have a T2.
Thanks!
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Question by:dsmjeff
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by:Mestha
ID: 23652578
As long as you are replicating the free/busy information to all servers (which you should be doing anyway) the bandwidth hit will be negligible because the bulk of the information is local to the user anyway.

-M
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by:dsmjeff
ID: 23652587
What do you mean "As long as you are replicating the free/busy information to all servers"?
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Author Comment

by:dsmjeff
ID: 23652618
Browsing Google I found the following containing info on Free/Busy:
 
Replicating Free/Busy Information
The short answer is don't do it. The only reason to replicate Free/Busy information is when you frequently have users accessing Free Busy information of users in another site, and those sites are separated by a slow or lossy network link. Replicating Free/Busy information introduces inherent latency and causes inaccuracy in the Free/Busy information. Users in one site may see information from a site that has not replicated yet.
Does anyone else agree or disagree with the above?
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Expert Comment

by:Mestha
ID: 23652754
I disagree.
I replicate all of the system folders to every Exchange server in the org. I have seen significant performance gains doing that.
I don't know who that blogger is (it would help if you posted the source rather than just copy and paste) so I cannot comment on the quality of the information.
http://www.expta.com/2008/07/freebusy-information-in-exchange-2003.html

The scenario that you have posted about having multiple servers and having bandwidth constraints would seem to be a clear reason even based on what you have copy and pasted to replicate that information. If you are seeing issues with content replication then you have bigger problems to worry about.

-M
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Author Comment

by:dsmjeff
ID: 23652778
Were not having issues w/ content replication.
My question was would there be a issue with bandwith. I didn't know what "replicating the free/busy information to all servers" meant. Hence, going to Google and trying to figure it out. I found that source and posted it to see if anyone else agrees. I am not a Exchange pro, so I tend to research before I make decisions. I am always open to ideas.
I will do further research on replicating the free/busy information to all servers and see what else comes up.
Does any other expert agree with Mestha? My question is about bandwith. Not content replication. Unless I'm missing something.
Thanks
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Mestha earned 2000 total points
ID: 23652855
Content replication and bandwidth are inter-linked.
If you do not replicate the data to the other servers then each time the users look at that calendar they will be pulling that information across live.

To answer the specific question, it is impossible to know based on the information that you have provided. If the calendar has multiple items in for every day, with attachments and other content then it could be slow to access while it is brought across the connections.

If the free/busy information is replicated to every server then the information is being retrieved from the same server the user's mailbox is located on.

Now if you have bandwidth concerns between the server and the clients, then there is little that can be done about that. You will have to try it and see what happens. The data has to be pulled from a server somewhere, and it will depend on how much data there is to be pulled.

-M
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Author Comment

by:dsmjeff
ID: 23652869
Okay. That is clearer. Thank you.
So let me break down our network a bit. A single Exchange server is present at Corp 1. All locations get data from that box. However, the replication, does that happen across DC's, or just Exchange boxes?
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LVL 65

Expert Comment

by:Mestha
ID: 23652905
Only between Exchange servers.

So if you only have a single Exchange server then your concern is between the client and the Exchange server. That is something you will have to try for yourself. One user might be ok, but 20 users all looking at the same time (the calendar owner sends an email asking everyone to put an entry in his calendar for a one to one for example) might be slow.

-M
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Author Comment

by:dsmjeff
ID: 23652964
Okay. Thank you for your help. Were discussing options and I'll post back.
Jeff
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