Outlook Clients in Remote Offices re-downloading mailbox from Exchange 2010

Posted on 2011-10-18
Last Modified: 2012-05-12
Bit of an urgent issue here. We have several remote offices with a few hundred users total, and everyone of them is re-downloading their mailbox, even though they already have a local copy of their OST up to date, on their machine. (We use Exchange cached mode for all users) We are running EXchange 2010 Sp1 - all the latest updates / rollups. We are running a mixed enviroment of Outlook 2003 / 2007 / 2010.  
We have a T1 MPLS, and the line is saturated with mail traffic.

The only change made to the exchange server was a rention policy tag was a applied to about 1/3 of the users (not all at remote offices).
Question by:it_medcomp
    LVL 26

    Expert Comment

    Yes, looks like by-design activity.

    Once you apply the policy-tags
    The changes from mailbox are compared against .ost.
    If needed Outlook *would* redownload the OST files

    LVL 1

    Author Comment

    so the tags are applied to each mail item? Are they removed if the policy is removed?

    LVL 26

    Expert Comment

    The closest link for my theory is:
    Plan for compliance and archiving in Outlook 2010

    If you use a Default Policy Tag, or Retention Policy Tag on the user’s mailbox or special folders, and the user uses cached mode to connect to Exchange, there will be an initial degradation in performance in Outlook while their Outlook profile is updated with the policy information. The time that is required to process the data file depends on its size and the speed of the computer. Users should be informed of the performance impact as their mailbox is updated.

    Or, you can delete the user’s Outlook profile and create a new profile for that account. When the user starts Outlook, Outlook will download the e-mail messages with the policy information already added. Depending on the size of the account’s mailbox, this might be faster than updating the existing account. However, after you create a new profile with that account, all messages must be indexed again to enable searching in Outlook.

    LVL 26

    Expert Comment

    REgarding the "Removoval of the Retention Tag"

    Understanding Retention Tags and Retention Policies

    Removing or Deleting a Retention Tag from a Retention Policy

    Existing items that have been stamped with that tag continue to be processed by the Managed Folder Assistant based on those settings and any retention action specified in the tag is applied to those messages.

    However, if you delete the tag, the tag definition stored in Active Directory is removed. This causes the Managed Folder Assistant to process all items in a mailbox and restamp the ones that have the removed tag applied. Depending on the number of mailboxes and messages, this process may significantly consume resources on all Mailbox servers that contain mailboxes with retention policies that include the removed tag.

    LVL 1

    Accepted Solution

    Closing this was something submitted by an old network admin and I don't think we're experiencing issues anymore
    LVL 1

    Author Closing Comment

    Old comment from employee no longer with company

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