Managing, Monitoring, and Troubleshooting the Exchange Organization

These questions are derived from the Self Test Software Practice Test for Microsoft exam #70-284 – Implementing and Managing Microsoft Exchange Server 2003


Objective: Managing, Monitoring, and Troubleshooting the Exchange Organization
SubObjective: Manage and troubleshoot public folders


Single Answer, Multiple Choice


Your company consists of a central office and a branch office. Exchange 2003 is used as the messaging system. Each office has one Exchange Server 2003 computer. The two servers are in separate routing groups, and a routing group connector has been configured in each office. Each office has an RRAS server that is equipped with a regular 56-KBPS modem and is configured as a demand-dial router.

A public store is located on the server in the central office. All employees frequently need access to the documents in the public folders in that public store. The documents in the public folders are periodically updated. Employees at the branch office complain that it takes too long to access the public folders. You want to reduce the amount of time that it takes for these users to access the documents in the public folders.

Which action(s) should you perform?



  1. Assign a cost of zero to the routing group connectors.
  2. Replicate the appropriate public folders between the two offices.
  3. Assign a public folder affinity of zero to the appropriate public folders.
  4. Create the appropriate public folders on the server in the branch office, and place all required documents into those public folders.

Answer:
B. Replicate the appropriate public folders between the two offices.

Tutorial:
Public folders that are created on one server can be replicated to other servers. To provide the branch office employees with faster access to the public folders, you should configure replication of the public folders to occur between the two offices. You can specify a synchronization schedule for each public folder; changes made to any of the replicas of those public folders will be automatically propagated to all other instances of that public folder. All replicas can be written to; changes can be made at either branch. Some latency may occur between the replicas, depending on the replication schedule. However, maintaining separate instances of the public folders in the branch office will provide all employees with fast access to the necessary documents. Note that in some instances it is not necessary or desirable for replication to be configured. If a public folder were only utilized in a particular office, but not elsewhere, it would be advisable to remove the public folder replicas from the Exchange servers in the other offices. This would reduce public folder replication traffic between the sites.

If only the employees in one office needed access to the documents in those public folders, then it would be more reasonable to maintain only one instance of the public folders on the server in that office. Maintaining the public folders on only one server would allow you to avoid saturating the WAN link with public folder replication traffic.

If multiple connectors existed in a routing group, then the cost assigned to each connector would indicate relative preference among the connectors. Because only one connector exists in each routing group in this scenario, the cost of each connector is irrelevant.

If you created a duplicate public folder structure in the branch office and copied the documents from the public folders in the central office, then you would have to manually synchronize the public folders in each office with the public folders in the other office. Manually synchronizing a large number of documents would require considerable administrative effort and is unnecessary because synchronization can be done automatically by using public folder replication.

Public folder affinity is used in earlier versions of Exchange. It defines the order in which users attempt to connect to public folder replicas in the event that the users’ default replicas are unavailable. In Exchange 2003, by default, public folder affinity is implicitly defined by the costs that are assigned to connectors. A connector cost is a number in the range from 1 through 100. Alternatively, public folder referral costs can be assigned at the server level; they cannot be assigned for individual folders. In this scenario, replicas should be placed on the Exchange server in the branch office in order to provide fast access for branch office users.

Reference:
1. Exchange Server 2003 Administration Guide – Managing Mailbox Stores and Public Folder Stores – Managing Public Folders, pp. 288-315.

2. Exchange Server 2003 Administration Guide – Managing Mailbox Stores and Public Folder Stores – Maintaining Public Folders, pp. 315-321.

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