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Exchange 2007 Hardware Recommendation

We are currently running Exchange 2003, 200 mailboxes, 250MB caps.  I would like the designed for growth to at least 300 mailboxes and 1GB of storage.  I also plan to run one Exchange server and combine the roles.

This is what I have spec'd so far:
1 - Quad Core Xeon E5420 Processor2x6MB Cache, 2.5GHz, 1333MHz FSB, PE2950
8GB of RAM
73GB 15k Mirror for the OS
146GB 15k Raid 5 for the DB

Is this too much system, not enough or just right?  Any additional recommendations?
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ohmErnie
Asked:
ohmErnie
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3 Solutions
 
Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
1.  You don't say how many drives in the RAID 5.  Or did you mean you were only going to get 3 drives of 73GB?  I don't know why you wouldn't seriously up the capacity given the relative cheap cost of storage - bump it up to 3x300 GB or more.

2.  I'd increase the RAM to at least 12 GB if not 16 GB.  One of the reasons Exchange is 64 bit only now is to support FAR more RAM than it could before.  To that end, you can expect it to use far more RAM as well.  It's good you're going with a 2950, which I believe supports a max of 64 GB.
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coolsport00Commented:
My org has about 250 users and we have a quad-core of the same processor, and same RAM amt. You can keep what you have spec'd out and be good to go. As 'leew' suggested, I would maybe budget for more RAM for next year, but initially this is fine. I also recommend up'ing your disk size. If you plan on using features such as LCR, you're going to need the extra space...it WILL get used. Third, do you have a SAN? If so, I recommend placing your DB on the SAN, and using the RAID disks for LCR.

Other than that, you are totally on the right track. I'm sure you may have seen it already, but here's MS's spec recommendations:
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/aa996719.aspx
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb738142.aspx

Regards,
~coolsport00
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ohmErnieAuthor Commented:
leew -
I would have 4 - 146GB drives in a Raid 5.
coolsport00 -
I do not have a SAN.  Can I place my DB and LCR on the same raid set?
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coolsport00Commented:
Yes, you can certainly do so. MS recommends separating things out as much as possible is all for 'best' performance - logs on 1 RAID, DB on another, and LCR/CCR on another. Good articles here:
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb124518.aspx
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb738146.aspx
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb124558.aspx

Regards.
~coolsport00
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ohmErnieAuthor Commented:
The only way i can put everything on its own raid would be to have 3 RAID 1 configurations...
1st Mirror OS
2nd Mirror DB
3rd Mirror Logs
This is how my exchange 2003 server is currently setup and the raid for me logs barely contains any data.  it almost seems pointless to have the third set.  However, I am trying to understand if it is better to do 3 RAID 1s rather than a RAID 1 (OS) and Raid 5 (db/logs).  I only have 6 hd bays in the pe2950.
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coolsport00Commented:
Well, I would probably separate it into 2 - a RAID for logs/OS and a RAID for DB. Your org is small enough to more than likely not have any performance issues. You have 250MB caps on the mailboxes anyway, so you'll certainly be good to go.

~coolsport00
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