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Exchange related question on IOPS

Posted on 2011-02-15
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
We have a remote site running Exchange 2007 in SCC - Active/Active/Passive on Windows 2008 Server. The environment was sized for about 1500 users and we worked with vendors on SAN disk configuration etc.

We're now going to deploy BES there to keep them inline with company policy.

I understand there will be an increase in IOPS - roughly about 4 times the IOPS for each user we BES-enable.

We haven't gone into the details, so this question is more hypothetical really, but is the solution to increased IOPS more disks in the SAN array? What if the array has no more space for disks? Is there anything else I can do?
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Question by:chuckp2010
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LVL 34

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Paul MacDonald earned 668 total points
ID: 34901582
Generally the response to more IOPS is to spread the load among LUNS, not just to add spindles to a LUN.  That is, create several mail databases and put them each on their own drive.
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Author Comment

by:chuckp2010
ID: 34901669
Could you expand, not sure I understand the answer? I always thought the answer was to add more spindles, so I guess my understanding was wrong in the first place! :)

Secondly, what's the effect of not making changes to deal with the increased IOPS? Delays in Exchange I guess?
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LVL 44

Assisted Solution

by:Amit
Amit earned 668 total points
ID: 34904067
I am not a SAN expert. But as I am handling Exchange from long time. I asked same question to my SAN team. They normally answer, that we need minimum 20% space free in SAN side.

Secondly, I don't think BES will going to create that IOPS issue on the Exchange server. By Default BES will use 5 threads to access information from Exchange. Now make sure you don't configure remote Exchange user to remote BES server. This will block one thread and if it is hung whole BES system will not function. Let me explain how.

If you have multiple Exchange servers. Say EX001 in NYC and EX002 in HAC site. Now you implemented a BES server in NYC site for EX001. Till here all is good. But the time you configure any Ex002 user to NYC BES server, one BES thread will be utilized and if it hung BES mail will not work.
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LVL 56

Assisted Solution

by:andyalder
andyalder earned 664 total points
ID: 34905197
Adding spindles or converting to a faster form of RAID (if possible) on the SAN side should speed it up. Of course it depends on the SAN's current configuration. More LUNs/databases will obviously help too.
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