Server roles in exchange 2010(number of servers)

Posted on 2011-04-27
Last Modified: 2012-06-27
We are a small environment of 30 users running exchange 2003. some of the mailboxs reaching 10GB with no restriction. We are planning to move to exchange 2010. I have a Blade server Intel Xeon 2.66 & 2.67 and 8GB RAM in which I am planning to install. Attached with iSCSI SAN (Gigabit switch)
I'm Planning to keep all the mailbox store in SAN. Now I am not sure how many servers do i need for my environment for exchange 2010. Should i install all roles Edge, Hub, Client, Unified messaging on the same server or should i divide them into 2 server. The number of users will remain the same.
please advice.
Question by:numanmalik
    LVL 13

    Assisted Solution

    You can not combine Edge with other rolse, you need a separate machine (phisycal or virtual) for that. If you use ForeFront TMG, you can install Edge on that.
    All the other roles can be on an other machine, but if you need high availability you have to have 2 boxes.
    LVL 24

    Assisted Solution

    Given that you have only 30 users, you can have Mailbox, HUB and CAS on one server and that willbe it.

    If you need HA, two servers with all three roles and a hardware load balancer. LoadMaster from Kemp Technologies will be a good & cheaper option for you. It is recommended by MS as well.

    What do you do for spam filtering at the moment?
    LVL 16

    Expert Comment

    I would think two servers with all the roles on each server, along with a load balancer and a DAG. If you do a DAG, you will also need a third server to act as a file share witness.  

    Note: to setup DAG you must run the Enterprise SKU of Server 2008 (Pref. R2) on the servers.. You can still use Exchange 2010 Standard though.  The only major dif between Standard & Enterprise for Exchange is the number of databases that can be created.

    If you do setup an Edge server, it cannot be a member of your domain.

    Author Comment

    I use ClearSwift email Gateway for SPAM filtering in DMZ. so i guess i really don't need a Edge server. I am not sure to setup DAG, don't want to make extra complicated rather make it simple to manage.

    Do you guyz think 10GB or more of each mailbox size can be easily handled by ex10 or we should be looking to buy an archiving solution
    LVL 16

    Accepted Solution

    10gb * 30 users is only 300gb I think so long as you backup can support that it's fine.  The recomended maximum size of an exchange 2010 db from MS is 2TB (I would never have a DB this big though as rebuild time would be problematic)  If you are running all of this on a single server, I would recomend more than 8gb of ram though.  For each role it is recomended to have at least 4gb of memory per role, and another 3-30MB per mailbox.  I would err on the side of caution and plan for 30+ mb per mailbox though as the 10Gig ones will be quite large...

    Sorry I read Rajith's message rather quickly, which was why I mentioned Dag and load balancer.  


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