Exchange 2010 Topology Best Practice

Scenario:

Currently we have 4 different sites with around 200 employees at each site. All our servers and Internet is hosted at a Data Center. We are planning on upgrading our DC's and Exchange servers at our Data Center and could use a little guidance on what the best practice would be. If someone could give us a few scenarios on what the best practice would be we would really appreciate it.


We will be installing 2 new DC’s and 2 or 3 new mail servers.

How many servers for exchange 2 or 3?
What roles to assign each server?
We want to use DAG.
Will a barracuda for spam be recommended or should we do Microsoft forefront protection?
dufffAsked:
Who is Participating?
 
jhindsonCommented:
What is your current email platform and topology? How well is that working for you?

If you want a quick and dirty topology suggestion, I'd say 3 Exchange 2010 servers, 2 in primary data center and 1 in secondary data center. All roles enabled on the servers and share a DAG between them.

I prefer to keep SPAM away from the network, so I would rather pay for a hosted SPAM solution like Forefront or Postini. If you already have a SPAM appliance though and don't want to pay for hosted service, then it will likely suffice.
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abhijitmdpCommented:
Better you plan all your deployment using Microsoft Deployment Assistance, can follow below link for referance.
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ff709381.aspx

Using barracuda will be a good option for all your flows but you can also go for Microsoft forefront protection.
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dufffAuthor Commented:
thanks for the link. I guess what I am really looking for is a response from someone that has already completed an upgrade similar to my scenario. what servers they used and topology. Before we do the deployment we want to make sure we have the best equipment and layout. We are at the stage of picking equipment and best practice as a whole.
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dufffAuthor Commented:
thanks
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