How do you divide mailboxes among databases in Exchange 2010?

Hi There,

What is the standard practice on mailbox databases in Exchange 2010? Do you do it by a number of users per database, by logical groupings (departments, management, etc.)? Do you do it some other way? Size?

Please let me know!

Thanks!
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PugglewuggleAsked:
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netballiCommented:
I would recommend max 600 user per mailbox database for optimal performance on exchange 2010 server
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PugglewuggleAuthor Commented:
How did you come about that number? And doesn't it matter how big the mailboxes are?
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PradeepCommented:
Knowing the amount of data that an end user is allowed to store in his or her mailbox allows you to determine how many user mailboxes can be housed on the server..

Go through this article once..
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Brian BEE Topic Advisor, Independant Technology ProfessionalCommented:
We mapped out our existing mailboxes and their sizes and then tried to find a way to divide them up evenly into three groups. In the end we created three databases for user's last names A-I, J-Q, R-Z.

You didn't mention how many mailboxes you have, but we could have used one big database. The advantages we got with breaking them up were if you ever have to dismount a database, you don't kill every single user. Also if we ever need to restore a database, at most we only need to have available enough empty space for our largest database.
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netballiCommented:
we have a enterprise wide limit of mailbox size per user with exception of TOP bosses, we have also set archived the Mail database store so that the users should  not complain about lack of space for mail storage . The figure of 600 user per mailbox is what we have set in our environment and is providing optimum performance.
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netballiCommented:
If you really wish to test out the correct size for your environment try the following link.


http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ee832796.aspx
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PugglewuggleAuthor Commented:
Nobody really answered this - does the mailbox SIZE have any factor in how many mailboxes to add to a mailbox database? Or is it only based on connections?
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RAdministratorCommented:
Individual size per se doesn't matter. Some mailboxes I've seen still worked at 16GB in a ~100GB database (on Exchange 2010 fully patched and well-maintained). BUT: that was a mini-disaster waiting to happen. Even a 10 GB mailbox is way too large, if the user is on Outlook. Their local OST can get corrupted, and setting up a new profile is a PITA, the emails will take forever to download, etc.etc.

With a database upwards of 150 GB, the server may act unpredictably, searches may be slow and users may complain. Unless you have crazy rollover, you can manage it on a case by case basis.
A part of best practices is enforcing quotas. In Exchange 2007 the optimal quota was 1 GB per mailbox (as in: stop sending and receiving at that mailbox size), in Exchange 2010 it is reputedly 10 GB, but on the ground it's more around 6 GB. At a 50-person company the total max. quotas come up to 300GB. Of course, you're going to have some email hoarders, and some who keep their mailboxes tidy. The mailbox database should never get to 300 GB.

A rule of thumb for database size is to stay on one database until it grows to 100GB, then create a second database and move the largest mailboxes to it, in order to even out the database size. For users with huge mailboxes, who want to keep every single email they receive, you can also consider a database dedicated to archives and give the main culprits an archive mailbox (which acts as a linked, secondary mailbox).
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Brian BEE Topic Advisor, Independant Technology ProfessionalCommented:
As I said, we took the size of our mailboxes into account when trying to divide them evenly into three databases. It won't be perfect since some mailboxes will grow faster than other, but ti allowed us to start with a balanced environment.
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