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Storage recommendations for Exchange 2013 deployment

We're a relatively small office (30 users, 40 mailboxes or so) but our current Exchange 2007 is really nearing its final days if for nothing else, it's just too slow to keep up at high volume times.

We're going to upgrade but I was hoping for some suggestions for storage configurations.  It'll be a single server.

Any suggestions and advice to look over would be really appreciated.
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pstiffsae
Asked:
pstiffsae
1 Solution
 
AmitIT ArchitectCommented:
Use this
https://gallery.technet.microsoft.com/office/Exchange-2013-Server-Role-f8a61780

Let me know, if you need any help in using this calculator.
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Will SzymkowskiSenior Solution ArchitectCommented:
For Exchange 2013 specifically It would be recommended to use Either RAID 1 or 10 for your storage configuration. Also you need to take into account that you are going from Exchange 2007 which uses (SIS) Single Instance Storage.

Exchange 2013 does not use Single Instance Storage so you have to take into account off the hop to add an additional 30% based on what you currently have allocated in Exchange 2007.

Keep in mind the same concepts apply for Exchange 2013, keeping your Logs and Data on separate Disks. Also moving mail.que to a separate disk as well.

Moving Mail.Que to another location
https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb125177%28v=exchg.150%29.aspx

Single Instance Storage
http://blogs.technet.com/b/exchange/archive/2008/02/08/3404852.aspx

Exchange 2013 Sizing Cheat Sheet
http://www.msexchange.org/articles-tutorials/exchange-server-2013/planning-architecture/exchange-2013-sizing-cheat-sheet-part1.html

Another way to get a good estimate for sizing purposes is using the Exchange Profile Analyzer. You can use this for individual mailboxes or the entire Exchange environment.

Exchange Profile Analyzer
https://www.microsoft.com/en-ca/download/details.aspx?id=10559

Will.
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pstiffsaeAuthor Commented:
Will,

So are you suggesting as many as 3 separate RAID 1 or 10 configurations? How many drives per would you go for either a 1 or 10? 2+2, 3+3?
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tmoore1962Commented:
first determine the amt of space you'll need when replacing a server usually try and size storage so that initially the amt of space used 25% of avail so if the current server has a data amt of 250GB the new data drive should be at least a 1TB.  I prefer a 250-GB sys partition.  For an exchange server C: 300GB (RAID1)  The log files I would also put on a RAID 1 for Performance 250GB should be ok unless you have a very large mailbox and extremely heavy traffic load.  so 3 of 500 GB drives in RAID 1 (hot spare) partitioned as described (make these 15K SAS drives) and then 4 1TB (15K would be nice for performance but 10K min SAS drives) for a RAID 5 partition for the mail store and use 1 drive as hot swap spare that would give you about 2TB of storage on RAID 5  Scale the partitions up if you need more space.  IE 200 users with 2GB mailbox limt is 400GB mail store  200 users with 5GB is a TB.  So a current 250GB mailstore size and this config would be sufficient, if your mail store is already close to a TB you may want to step up to 1.5TB drives
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pstiffsaeAuthor Commented:
We currently have a 100 gig Mailbox store - single server, RAID 1 for C drive and RAID 5 for Exchange information. 100 GIG C Drive and 500 GIG Exchange Drive. So so synthesize what you're suggesting:

C Drive: RAID 1, 3 Drives - 300 Gig (2 drives, 1 hot spare)
Log Files: RAID 1, 3 drives - 250 Gigs (2 Drive, 1 hot spare)

What would the other drives be?
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Will SzymkowskiSenior Solution ArchitectCommented:
Personally I would use RAID 1 and have 3 RAID 1 configurations, if this is local storage. If you are using a SAN than RAID 10 would be preferred as you can use more disk.

Will.
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pstiffsaeAuthor Commented:
Will,

Would you have separate the different copies of the Exchange database onto other RAID 1 configurations?
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Will SzymkowskiSenior Solution ArchitectCommented:
So if you have 6 Disks in the server
Disk 1/2 = c:\ (RAID1)
DISK 3/4 = d:\(RAID1-data)
DISK 5/6 = l:\ (RAID1 -logs)

If you have more disk available you should also move the mail.que to another drive as well.

Will.
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pstiffsaeAuthor Commented:
The chassis has 8 slots but can be upgraded to accommodate more.

Probably a dumb question can you assign hot spares that would take over if any disk in any of the 4 arrays were to go down?
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Will SzymkowskiSenior Solution ArchitectCommented:
If you storage array can support it then this is something to consider. However in a raid 1 configuration I do  not know if this will affect performance.

Will.
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pstiffsaeAuthor Commented:
Will - sorry to ask another question: why separate data, transaction logs, and mail.que? Can any of them be coupled or would you advice against? Just looking for an expert opinion, likely going to build the server with 4 seperate partitions but looking for more of an explanation.   How would you size the different partitions vs. the data partition?
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