Move mail server off-site. Need another DC?

A client would like to move away from in-house host physical email server, which runs MDaemon.

MDaemon is a simple mail server - not complicated like Exchange.

They'd like to move to DRFortress (DRF) datacenter. There, we'll setup the mail server in a vm.

DRF does provide firewall services.

They currently have a separate dc in-house.

Question: Will or should they also setup another dc at DRF?
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NVITEnd-user supportAsked:
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arnoldCommented:
IF the mail server uses the AD to determine emails/mailboxes the answer is yes, if the mailserver has the email/mailboxes stored locally and populated by means not related to accessing a DC, then no.

IS the entire email server being placed at a new location, or are they thinking of subscribing to a service where the email will be prescreen/fitlrered before delivery to the internal/in-house?
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NVITEnd-user supportAuthor Commented:
Hi arnold...
Everything is self contained on the server. It is currently a member server.
We're considering moving the whole server.
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arnoldCommented:
It being a member server is one thing. Is the mail handling setup using webmin, or a similar tool where the data about email addresses, aliases, mailing lists, and mailboxes etc are contained within the server or does the server use the AD to authenticate users to grant them access to their emails as well as the means by which email addresses are translated to the mailbox to which a message should be delivered is part of the data in the AD.  

You might not need to have/add a DC to the remote location if your mail server can be configured using openldap as a replica, the issue is that you have to maintain a link between the remote server/s and the DC in-house.

Presumably the reason to place this mail server outside your LAN is security, ?
Moving the server off site while having it link back, reduces the control you have........

There are tools as mentioned like webmin, etc. that might/could be used with a script on your inhouse side that will continually update the remote mail server with email address changes/password changes etc..........
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NVITEnd-user supportAuthor Commented:
I just got word... They'd like to move their file server in similar fashion, at a later date... within the year.

I think it's better to setup the dc now and get that squared away. Eventually, all/most of the servers will be at DRF.

Thoughts?
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arnoldCommented:
Are they going into a CLOUD like environment?
With all that is mentioned, they seem to be going to the everything is hosted at a Datacenter and they will be using an TS/RDS to access resources there.

I would suggest you get a clear understanding on what their intentions are first rather than move a piece at a time while making adjustments to implement the changes.

you could have A DC-DC link with local workstations are thin clients that remote to server/s in the data center to perform their work.
Backup consideration/recovery for loss of connection at the office/branch,etc.
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NVITEnd-user supportAuthor Commented:
They'd like to have some kind of minimal downtime in place. It doesn't have to be zero (or close to) downtime.

Currently, everything is physical.

Server 1: DC, file server, tape and disk-to-disk backup.

Type of work: Access files on Server 1 from Dell workstations with SSD drives and 64 GB RAM. Most files are AutoCAD files, several MB each, on average. Some, 10+ MB. Balance are excel, word, jpg, pdf.

Server 2: E-mail

Server 3: A license server for various programs.

IDK how fast routine file access of several MB AutoCAD .dwg files, from 20+ users is, compared to a LAN. So, not sure going full cloud would work.

I just found out they signed a contract with DRF, for 2 server VMs. This being the case, can you recommend  a good strategy to follow?
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arnoldCommented:
Depending on the VMs/constraints.
You could potentially use the VMs in the cloud as the backup mailserver as the destination to which mail will be routed while you are repairing the one in-house such that once it becomes available the messages will be delivered to it.

You could use the DRF as mailservers with anti-virus/spam filtering before it hits your internal mailserver.

Or have your website housed/hosted on those VMs.

Auto cad can have large files, space available as part of the drF VMs could also be used as offsite backup...............
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