How to test the disks on your Exchange server

If there’s one thing that’s true of all busy Exchange servers, it’s that they generate massive amounts of disk I/O. There’s a joke around here that Exchange is the world’s biggest hard disk diagnostics program. Typically, your disks will be the first component of your Exchange server that starts groaning as you add load. And,…


How to check the MMC snap-in version on Windows 2000

Now – this is one of those things that should be easy and obvious. How do you figure out what version (or build) a specific MMC snap-in is? For example – how do you find out if the ADC management MMC snap-in or ESM MMC snap-in have been updated to SP3 or some other build?…


Failure extending the schema in the Active Directory?

It is possible while installing the Active Directory Connector (ADC), or while running an Exchange setup Forestprep action, to be greeted with this incredibly generic error message: Extending the schema in the Active Directory failed.  Please consult the error log LDIF.ERR in your TEMP directory. When presented with this error message, you might dutifully go…


Fun with the Offline Address Book (OAB)

As companies adopt Outlook 2003 cached mode for their users, the Offline Address Book (OAB) becomes increasingly important. When Outlook 2003 users open the GAL or use name resolution, the OAB is used instead of making requests to a Global Catalog server. The OAB itself consists of a set of .OAB files which are attached…


"First post!!!" of the Microsoft Exchange team blog

This is a group blog written by folks from the Microsoft Exchange server team. We are developers, testers, program managers, technical writers and product support engineers who work with Exchange. At the end of each blog entry, you’ll see the author’s name and a link to their bio. The bios of all participants can be…


How the M: Drive came about

In Exchange 2000, we introduced a new feature called IFS. IFS stands for “Installable File System”. This uses a little known and even less used feature of NT that allows the OS’s file system (like NTFS or FAT) to be replaced. The initial reason for doing that was as an optimization: it would allow protocols,…