Microsoft Transporter Suite

For a while now, Microsoft has offered the Transporter Suite for Lotus Domino to migrate from Domino to Exchange 2007.  It looks like this suite has now been updated to include support for generic POP/IMAP sources, meaning that migrating from these systems to Exchange 2007 should be easier as you'll not need to maintain things like a copy of the old Exchange Migration Wizard.

Neil Hobson on January 24, 2008 at 08:53 AM
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Best Practices Analyzer released for Small Business Server 2003

Microsoft has finally released a Best Practices Analyzer for Small Business Server (SBS). You can download the SBSBPA here.

SBSBPA will check the following:

• Exchange Server 2003
• Update Service
• Network configuration
• Windows SharePoint Services
• SQL Server when it is present

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on October 16, 2007 at 02:35 AM
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Exchange 2007 SDK Updated July 2007

The quarterly Software Development Kit for Exchange Server 2007 has been updated for July 2007. The samples and documentation are well worth the 19.1MB download and installation (which can even be Vista). Exchange Web Services has been updated the most from the previous SDK release back in April 2007.

The Exchange 2003 updated SDK was last released in June 2007.

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on July 27, 2007 at 08:23 AM
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ADModify.NET - New Download Location

Dan Winter of Microsoft kindly posted a comment to one of the blog posts here informing us that the ADModify.NET tool has a new download location.  I've therefore decided to create a new post to ensure that this information is dispersed as widely as possible.

You can download the latest build of ADModify.NET from http://ADModify.NET.

Neil Hobson on July 25, 2007 at 09:26 AM
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Daylight Savings Time (DST) Tool Update

I have been avoiding saying anything about the DST update process for Exchange, mostly because it is challenging to hit a moving target.

But I think today, we may be where we need to be to get this adjustment implemented on Exchange servers. Version 2.0 of the Exchange Calendar Update tool has been posted to the Microsoft download site. This one addresses resource mailboxes more effectively, with the Outlook tool, described in KB 931667, as a prerequisite. It has a couple of added command line options and manages public folder changes as well.

Look for KB 930879 How to address daylight savings time with the Exchange Calendar Update tool to be updated today.

Be wary of using internet searches and finding solutions prior to this version of the tool. I think the best resource for the process has come from the horse's mouth, namely the Exchange Team blog, including videos on implementing the tool.

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on February 22, 2007 at 04:45 PM
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Microsoft Office Visio Stencil Containing Shapes for Microsoft Exchange Server 2007

"This download contains a Microsoft Office Visio stencil with shapes for Microsoft Exchange Server 2007."

Chris Meirick on January 19, 2007 at 04:42 PM
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Microsoft Office Add-in: Microsoft Outlook SMS Add-in (MOSA)

"This download will enable you to send SMS text messages through most Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) mobile phones connected to your PC using Microsoft Office Outlook 2007 and Microsoft Office Outlook 2003."

Chris Meirick on January 17, 2007 at 09:43 PM
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Powershell 1.0 Released

As you already know by now, Windows Powershell (not the original Powershell) has been released with version 1.0 available for download for Windows XP and Windows Server 2003. Powershell for Vista and Longhorn is still a couple of months away, however.  It makes sense that Powershell week was just a little while ago.

The Exchange Management Shell is an extension of the Windows Powershell and is installed with Exchange Server 2007. If your company allows you to download .exe files from websites (it's an HTML page... why not just .zip it? Or perhaps a web server might do the trick?), the Exchange Management Shell quick reference is available as well.

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on November 17, 2006 at 03:59 AM
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Outlook Junk E-mail Reporting Tool

This is a useful addition to Outlook.  Microsoft has released a Junk E-mail Reporting Tool for Outlook 2003 or Outlook 2007.  Just download and run the .msi installer and a new toolbar is added to Outlook:

Toolbar

When you next get a piece of spam that has made it past the Outlook junk e-mail filter, just select the spam and click this toolbar button.  The spam will be sent to Frontbridge for analysis which will hopefully improve the filtering technology.  Clicking the toolbar for the first time will generate this message:

Message_1

You will receive an auto-reply message regarding your spam submission.  If you send multiple spam submissions per day, you'll receive just the one auto-reply.

Neil Hobson on October 28, 2006 at 08:27 AM
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The OWACHECK Tool

Following on from my OWA synthetic logon post yesterday, I thought it a good time to talk about the OWACHECK.EXE tool available from Microsoft PSS.

It can be quite difficult to troubleshoot the OWA synthetic logons that MOM 2005 performs within your Exchange environment.  The OWACHECK.EXE tool can help you here, so let me explain what it does.  The tool is just a single executable file which is available from Microsoft PSS as I said earlier.  Copy it to the Exchange front-end server that contains the MOM 2005 agent performing the synthetic logon.  Next, enable debugging on this Exchange server by adding the following registry key:

Key: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Exchange MOM
Value: REG_DWORD
Value Name: DebugLS
Value Data: 1

Now go to a command prompt and execute OWACHECK.EXE using the following command line:

owacheck.exe MailboxName URL

MailboxName = MOM test mailbox name.  You can check the BEAccount registry parameter in HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Exchange MOM\FEMonitoring\servername on the Exchange front-end server to determine what this is.  Typically it's the first MOM test mailbox created on that server.  For example, if the server name is "SERVER", then the first MOM test mailbox would be called SERVERMOM.

URL = the URL that you want to test.  For example, https://email.domain.com/exchange

Therefore a sample command line would read:

owacheck.exe SERVERMOM https://email.domain.com/exchange

OWACHECK.EXE tells you where the output file has been created, typically in the \documents and settings\name\local settings\temp folder.  Examine the output file, owacheck.log, for evidence of either success or failure.  Here are some sample output files:

A successful logon file:

[17/10/2006 12:01:31]  Starting OWACHECK
[17/10/2006 12:01:31]  --------------------
[17/10/2006 12:01:31]  No credential override.
[17/10/2006 12:01:31]  Mailbox SERVERMOM is going to be used.
[17/10/2006 12:01:31]  CustomerUrl: https://email.domain.com/exchange
[17/10/2006 12:01:31]  Url: https://email.domain.com/exchange/servermom
[17/10/2006 12:01:31]  Calling GetCredential.
[17/10/2006 12:01:31]  Entering GetCredential
[17/10/2006 12:01:31]  Decrypting the credentials...
[17/10/2006 12:01:31]  Decryption complete. Domain = DOMAIN, Username = MOMMBX.
[17/10/2006 12:01:31]  GetCredential call returned success.
[17/10/2006 12:01:31]  Starting Basic Auth Logon
[17/10/2006 12:01:31]  Entering GetPage.
[17/10/2006 12:01:31]  Adding credentials to the request.
[17/10/2006 12:01:31]  GETPAGE - HttpTimeout set to 30 seconds.
[17/10/2006 12:01:31]  Calling GetResponse...
[17/10/2006 12:01:32]  GETPAGE - HTTP Response Code: OK
[17/10/2006 12:01:32]  Response stream received
[17/10/2006 12:01:32]  Logon Successful! - <FRAMESET...>
[17/10/2006 12:01:32]  Basic Auth Logon Successful

And here's an example of a failure logon file:

[17/10/2006 11:55:51]  Starting OWACHECK
[17/10/2006 11:55:51]  --------------------
[17/10/2006 11:55:51]  No credential override.
[17/10/2006 11:55:51]  Mailbox SERVERMOM is going to be used.
[17/10/2006 11:55:51]  CustomerUrl: https://email.domain.com/exchange
[17/10/2006 11:55:51]  Url: https://email.domain.com/exchange/servermom
[17/10/2006 11:55:51]  Calling GetCredential.
[17/10/2006 11:55:51]  Entering GetCredential
[17/10/2006 11:55:51]  Decrypting the credentials...
[17/10/2006 11:55:51]  Decryption complete. Domain = DOMAIN, Username = MOMMBX.
[17/10/2006 11:55:51]  GetCredential call returned success.
[17/10/2006 11:55:51]  Starting Basic Auth Logon
[17/10/2006 11:55:51]  Entering GetPage.
[17/10/2006 11:55:51]  Adding credentials to the request.
[17/10/2006 11:55:51]  GETPAGE - HttpTimeout set to 30 seconds.
[17/10/2006 11:55:51]  Calling GetResponse...
[17/10/2006 11:55:51]  WebException caught. WebExcetion: TrustFailure.
[17/10/2006 11:55:51]  Basic Auth Logon Failed

Here you can see the errors highlighted in bold.  Now you can troubleshoot the certificate trust failure.

Neil Hobson on October 18, 2006 at 01:31 PM
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Skylook 2.0 Media Sneak Peek

A major new version of Skylook is around the corner, scheduled for release on 1st October 2006.  Information on what is new in Skylook 2.0, including the first public screenshots, is available at the Skylook 2.0 media sneak peek site

Neil Hobson on September 6, 2006 at 01:03 PM
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Directory Update Application

Fellow Exchange MVP Jim McBee recently let me know that his company is now offering a web-based application to allow users to update their own directory attributes.  Jim writes:

"It is a web-based replacement to GALMOD that lets a user modify their own GAL attributes.  It is simple from the user's perspective but configurable from the administrator's perspective.  It allows the administrator to hide most fields or let them remain visible but prevent the user from modifying it."

You can find more information on the product's website here.

Neil Hobson on August 24, 2006 at 10:51 AM
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Microsoft Exchange Troubleshooting Assistant v1.0

Microsoft has released another utility to help Exchange administrators solve issues with their servers. The new Exchange Troubleshooting Assistant (ExTRA) v1.0 is availalble for download here.

"The Microsoft Exchange Troubleshooting Assistant can help to determine the cause of performance, mail flow and database mounting issues on computers running Microsoft Exchange Server. The tool automates specialized troubleshooting steps for identified symptoms"

I think this should be incorporated into the Exchange Best Practices Analyzer, which is now up to version 2.7.

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on August 4, 2006 at 07:44 AM
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ExBPA 2.7 Available

Microsoft has again updated its very popular Exchange Server Best Practices Analyzer tool, which is now ExBPA 2.7. There were modest updates to its interface and additions to its overall coverage.

For all the Exchange Analyzer Tools (EAT), Microsoft has a dedicated EAT TechNet page.

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on June 12, 2006 at 11:49 AM
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ExBPA v2.6 - coming in April

Apparently, Microsoft has released the final XML update for ExBPA v2.5 today.  In early April, it will release ExBPA v2.6 which will include some 'cool reporting enhancements'.  The English version will be released first, followed by localised versions in June.  Keep an eye out for this update.

Neil Hobson on March 13, 2006 at 09:41 PM
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Exchange Lotus Notes/Domino Migration Tools To Be Updated

In January, Microsoft announced they would be updating their Lotus migration tools to ease the burden of migrating from Lotus Notes/Domino to Exchange Server 2003.

The toolset includes the following:

       Microsoft Application Analyzer 2006 for Lotus Domino. This tool,
       available in the first quarter of 2006, will significantly improve the
       process of analyzing a Notes/Domino application environment and provide
       a framework for making recommendations to transition those applications
       to the Microsoft platform.

       Microsoft Data Migrator 2006 for Lotus Domino. This new tool, available
       in the second quarter of 2006, will allow organizations to migrate data
       from Lotus Domino template-based applications to Windows SharePoint
       Services Application Templates.

       Additional Windows SharePoint Services Application Templates. Building
       on the success of 30 application templates released in August 2005,
       Microsoft announced three new application templates available today
       developed for customers using similar Lotus Notes/Domino templates
       today: Discussion Database, Team Work Site and Document Library.

       Updated Messaging and Coexistence Tools. To assist companies with the
       transition from Lotus Notes/Domino messaging to Microsoft Exchange
       Server, Microsoft is providing enhanced functionality and increased
       stability for Exchange Calendar Connector for Lotus Notes/Domino,
       Exchange Connector for Lotus Notes/Domino and Migration Wizard for
       Lotus Notes/Domino.

Migrating the data is not too difficult, in either direction, actually.  But where there exists custom applications, migrating application logic is another issue.  Historically, the Application Analyzer, and the Application Converter did not do a very thorough job, and were only helpful for the most basic applications.  Hopefully the updated version improves greatly on that.

I would expect these tools to be made available along side their other interoperability and migration tools for Exchange

Also note Microsoft's support policy for Exchange for migration and coexistence with Lotus Notes.

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on January 23, 2006 at 05:12 AM
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ExBPA 2.5 Changes

Here's some information from Paul Bowden, the Program Manager for the Exchange Best Practices Analyzer, on the differences between ExBPA v2.1a and v2.5:

"As for the differences between ExBPA v2.1a and v2.5, the release is mainly about some underlying engine fixes and getting all languages back in sync.  As you probably know, we released ExBPA v2.0 in nine languages, but the v2.1 update was only for U.S. English. So, v2.5 is back at nine languages.  Because there's a visual freeze process that we go through for localization hand-off, the Config XML file in the MSI is at the level of the hand-off date.  Within the non-U.S. English MSI's you should find that all text strings display in the local language. However, when you start the tool it will detect updates from the web, and give you the option to download them.  The only caveat is that any updates downloaded may display English strings, so you'll see a mix of content.

The final Config XML for v2.1 was 2.7.0.1 and v2.5 has that same level if you choose to receive updates from the web.

The user interface enhancements made between v2.1a and v2.5 are as follows:

- Select/Unselect All link in scan options
- Ability to rename existing scans in the scan list
- In the tree view reports (e.g. Detailed View) all rules are hyperlinked to the corresponding content

There's nothing earth shattering here, but there are some fairly fundamental changes in the engine that we wanted to get out there.  First of all, it's more efficient and should yield better performance.  Secondly, the engine now supports a type/reference structure which means that we can load multiple Config XML fragments.  We'll be taking advantage of this soon."

Neil Hobson on November 4, 2005 at 08:45 AM
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Exchange Tools Update

Yesterday Microsoft released several updates to important tools for Exchange:

First, the PFDAVAdmin tool has been updated to version 2.4 and finally been made a supported tool, which it wasn't before.  You can get the latest version here.

Also, you can download the latest version sof the Exchange Server Analyzer tools.  These include the Exchange Server Best Practices Analyzer Tool (ExBPA) v2.5, the Exchange Server Performance Troubleshooting Analyzer Tool v1.0 and the Exchange Server Disaster Recovery Analyzer Tool v1.0.

For those of you running Microsoft Operations Manager (MOM), note that the Exchange Server Management Pack and Exchange Server Management Pack Configuration Wizard were also updated on the download site.  I'm not clear on what changes were made yet so I'm off to have a look.

Update 7th November 2005:

Scott Schnoll of Microsoft has kindly provided some information on the changes within the Exchange 2003 Management Pack.  Scott writes:

"The following list of rules highlights some of the changes that were added in this update to the Exchange Server 2003 Management Pack for MOM 2005.  Some of the rules added in this release of Exchange Server Management Pack relate to features added in Exchange Server 2003 Service Pack 2 (SP2). For information about Exchange Server 2003 SP2 features, see What's New in Exchange Server 2003.

Note: Exchange 2000 Server Management Pack has not been updated

Rules have been added to provide enhanced monitoring in the following areas:

Exchange database size limits

Exchange ActiveSync configuration settings

Exchange ActiveSync Up-to-Date Notifications performance

Exchange ActiveSync errors

Monitor intelligent message filtering performance

Intelligent message filtering for errors

Sender ID configuration errors

Sender ID errors

Disk read/write performance

DSAccess settings

Public folder replication"

Neil Hobson on November 3, 2005 at 09:04 AM
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WaxMail - Voice over Email

From the makers of Skylook comes WaxMail. "WaxMail lets you talk instead of type! Your voice messages are attached to Outlook emails (as MP3s) ready to send to any email address. Recipients do not need WaxMail in order to hear your message."

Chris Meirick on October 27, 2005 at 02:06 PM
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BerryPoint Connect for SharePoint

"BerryPoint Connect mobilizes SharePoint Services by breaking down its complex web interface into smaller sections appropriate for display on a BlackBerry browser. Without BerryPoint Connect, BlackBerry users trying to access SharePoint will be frustrated by web pages that are nearly impossible to read, javascript errors, and pages that are too large to load. BerryPoint Connect enables mobile users to read, edit and create items in all SharePoint lists: tasks, issues, announcements, links, contacts, discussions, events, document libraries, and custom lists. This includes access to custom columns and views. BerryPoint Connect provides access to SharePoint Portal Server areas, news items, and all SharePoint lists belonging to Portal areas. BerryPoint Connect enables the modification of SharePoint alerts to direct BlackBerry users to the appropriate site menu. BerryPoint Connect provides a framework for the display of third-party Web Parts. "

Chris Meirick on August 26, 2005 at 05:11 PM
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Skylook 1.0.2 Released

"Skylook 1.0.2 is here!

If you purchased Skylook 1.0.1 you get Skylook 1.0.2 for free.

If you are currently trialling Skylook 1.0.1 you can continue your trial with Skylook 1.0.2.

Skylook 1.0.2 also contains the same free toolbar functionality as Skylook 1.0.1,so we recommend users of the free version (i.e. where the trial has expired) update to Skylook 1.0.2 as well.

New Features
Hang-up Buttons
Recording Monitor
Last 20 recordings backed up to disk
Quick Email to Current Caller
Quick Appointment with Current Caller

Bug Fixes
Improved call recording reliability.
Fixed problems that caused Outlook to crash.
Much faster startup for users with lots of contacts.
Much faster general operation for users with lots of contacts.
Fixed general sluggishness/unusual behaviour on some Outlook configurations.
Fixed problem with Recipient not being populated on some voice call items.
Fixed problem with portions of some text chats being lost.
Fixed problems with recording conference calls.
Fixed problems with recording calls where a caller is placed on hold.
Consolidated fixes from version 1.0.1.52

Important Notes for Outlook 2000 users. (does not apply to Outlook XP/2002/2003)

There is an issue still outstanding in 1.0.2.78 involving the closing down of Outlook. Outlook 2000 may not completely shut down when you close it. The main window will disappear but Outlook will still be running (you can see this by starting task manager and looking for the OUTLOOK.EXE process)."

We are working on this issue and should have a fix available in the near future.In the meantime, Outlook 2000 users can work around this issue by ending the Outlook process from task manager, or by rebooting after closing Outlook. If this is not done, the Skylook toolbar will not appear when Outlook is restarted.

IMPORTANT: Before installing 1.0.2.78, make sure that Outlook is not running, by checking in task manager as described above. If Outlook is running, the installation will not proceed successfully."

Chris Meirick on August 24, 2005 at 04:48 PM
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ExBPA Updated

The Exchange Server Best Practices Analyzer v2.1 package has been updated. Mark has full details of the bugs fixed, and changes in the latest Config XML.

Chris Meirick on August 9, 2005 at 05:17 PM
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Outlook Language Stamper Client

Outlook Language Stamper Client - Very useful freeware tool to help with changing the language/renaming of the Outlook default folders. There are other ways to achieve this, however this app works well.

There's some other apps available too... Language Stamper Admin, PAB Importer and Out of Office Manager.

Chris Meirick on August 8, 2005 at 05:11 PM
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Office 2003 Add-in: Outlook Calendar Views

"The Microsoft Office Outlook 2003 Calendar Views Add-in makes it easy for you to view your Outlook Calendar appointments through a filter that is based on Outlook labels and categories. For example, you can create a view that shows you only the appointments on your calendar that are labeled Must Attend, or are categorized as Important. You add filters by using the Calendar Views toolbar, which opens in your Outlook Calendar after you install the add-in."

Chris Meirick on August 8, 2005 at 05:08 PM
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Updated Exchange Tools

Exchange Server Domain Rename Fixup (XDR-Fixup)

Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 Load Simulator (LoadSim)

Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 Auto Accept Agent

Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 Exchange Profile Update

Exchange Server Mailbox Merge Wizard (ExMerge)

Chris Meirick on August 5, 2005 at 12:10 PM
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Skylook 1.0 for Outlook

"Skype Voice Calls (as MP3), Instant Messages, Email, Appointments, Contacts all organised and under control in Outlook!"

Chris Meirick on August 3, 2005 at 08:57 PM
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iHateSpam for Exchange v1.7 Released

With the release of v1.7, iHateSpam for Exchange now comes with two spam detection engines - the Sunbelt anti-spam engine, and the Cloudmark engine.

"Version 1.7 utilizes both heuristics and a signature probability scoring method, taking spam detection to the next level. It uses the award-winning iHateSpam for Exchange heuristic engine and the latest Cloudmark signature engine that incorporates hourly updates. With the integration of dual spam detection engines, iHateSpam for Exchange now delivers even greater spam detection with current tests reporting almost 100% spam detection with less then 1% false positives when both engines are used. "

Chris Meirick on July 17, 2005 at 06:27 PM
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Exchange 2003 SDK June 2005 Update

The quarterly update of the Exchange Server 2003 Software Development Kit (SDK) Documentation and Samples is available for download.

"The documentation and samples assist developers in building applications for Exchange 2003 Server."
William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on July 16, 2005 at 09:41 AM
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Outlook Mobile Manager

"We are happy to introduce Microsoft Outlook Mobile Manager 2.0. Microsoft Outlook Mobile Manager (OMM) brings the power of Microsoft Outlook to your portable device. OMM can prioritize your messages and makes smart decisions about when to send email. OMM also sends calendar reminders, task reminders, and an Outlook Today style daily summary all to your wireless device."

Chris Meirick on July 14, 2005 at 08:32 PM
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NewsGator Outlook Edition 2.5 Released

"NEW FEATURES IN VERSION 2.5

Status Synchronization: Read/Unread/Delete status of posts are synced.
Folder Synchronization: Folder structure is synchronized with NG Web Edition
International Support: French, German, Dutch, the list goes on.
Subscription Plan: Subscribe monthly as well as annually"...

Chris Meirick on June 29, 2005 at 10:31 PM
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Lookout v1.2

"Lookout is lightning-fast search for your e-mail, files, and desktop integrated with Microsoft Outlook™. Built on top of a powerful search engine, Lookout is the only personal search engine that can search all of your e-mail from directly within Outlook - in seconds... "

(not forgetting of course, as Simon points out, that the Experimental Version 1.3 is also available)

Chris Meirick on June 25, 2005 at 12:07 PM
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ExBPA v2.1 Released

"Overview
The Exchange Server Best Practices Analyzer programmatically collects settings and values from data repositories such as Active Directory, registry, metabase and performance monitor. Once collected, a set of comprehensive ‘best practice’ rules are applied to the topology. Administrators running this tool will get a detailed report listing the recommendations that can be made to the environment to achieve greater performance, scalability and uptime."... and more info here.

Chris Meirick on June 24, 2005 at 07:09 PM
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Promodag Report v7.0 Released

Main innovations
The product was redeveloped using Microsoft .Net framework.
Integration of Promodag Reports Synthesis in Promodag Reports. This module consolidates your PROMODAG Reports databases (monthly ones for example) into one smaller PROMODAG Reports Synthesis database with less detailed information, to quickly produce trend reports.
Import of information stores file size.
New trending reports that will enable you to get x years of reporting grouped by month, quarter....
Unicode support for mailboxes display names and messages subject.
Improved speed for imports.
Improved speed for reports generation.

Chris Meirick on June 14, 2005 at 07:09 PM
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Instant Email With Your iPAQ H6340 Pocket PC

"Pocket X-Press is a unique service which combines e-mail push capability with enhanced browsing experience.

To go online you just need an iPAQ H6340 Pocket PC from HP, an e-mail account accessible via SMTP/POP3 and the Pocket X-Press client."

Chris Meirick on May 29, 2005 at 12:14 PM
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Aid4Mail 1.1 - Easily Convert, Export, Migrate, and Archive your Email

"Aid4Mail is a user-friendly Windows tool that helps you migrate your email messages to a different mail client, export them for viewing through Internet Explorer, MS Excel, or a database, convert them to extract or re-insert attachments, and archive them to save space or for compliance with legal requirements. It supports most popular mail client programs and processes all messages without losing any information, including those with file attachments and embedded contents like pictures and background images. Unlike other migration methods, Aid4Mail can also export message status information such as "unread", "read", "replied", and "forwarded". Aid4Mail produces results quickly and with great accuracy."

Chris Meirick on May 29, 2005 at 12:03 PM
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Exchange Server 2003 Events and Errors Help

The Exchange section of Microsoft's grandiose burgeoning website seems to continually improve over the years. 

They have taken a page from the guys at EventID.Net and have added an Exchange Event search site.  Simply enter the source of the event as read from the Windows event logs as well as the event ID number and an informative reply or resolution will, hopefully, be returned.  You can enter just a source, such as MSExchangeAL, and get a list of possible Event IDs related to that source. 

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on May 3, 2005 at 08:45 AM
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Exchange Server User Monitor Tool

Microsoft has released another utility for our toolbox: the Exchange Server User Monitor Tool

It must be installed on the Exchange Server you want to monitor users for and requires Exchange 2000 sp2 (or later) or Exchange 2003 sp1 (or later).

You can read more about ExMon at the Exchange Team blog and of course in the documentation.  Even though it has been released as an installer package, it is really just a self extracting file.

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on April 7, 2005 at 11:06 PM
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Exchange 2003 Utilities Updated

A few of the Exchange Server 2003 utilities that Microsoft provides have been updated and published to the downloads area of their site.

Exchange Server 2003 Jetstress Tool - "NAS support for Jetstress 2004 removed"

Exchange Server AUTD Binding Cleanup

Exchange Server Load Simulator 2003 (LoadSim)

Exchange Server MSSearch Administration Tool

William Lefkovics

Update: The reference to NAS support on the Jetstress download page has been removed.  Thanks to Matt Lathrum.

William Lefkovics on April 6, 2005 at 11:47 PM
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Updated Exchange MP Configuration Wizard

For those using MOM 2005 to manage Exchange, note that Chris Harris of Microsoft advises that a new version of the Exchange Management Pack Configuration Wizard has been released.

The update fix list includes:

1.  Crash due incorrect resource string when there is an error setting the messageTrackingEnabled property on the AD (Error msg: Index (zero based) must be greater than or equal to zero and less than the size of the argument list.)  This update means you no longer have to apply the .NET update for the Wizard to properly enable Message Tracking.

2.  A valid domain is reported as not valid for the Mailbox Access Account if domain uses DNS in other forest (Error msg: "Invalid domain for the mailbox access account")

3.  DCR: Wizard does not support NetBIOS domain names containing a period (.)

4.  Wizard incorrectly matches a valid list of services to monitor if more than one service is inside double-quotes

5.  Wizard incorrectly assumes that the AD schema has been extended for Exchange 2003 when configuring Exchange 2000 servers

Neil Hobson on April 5, 2005 at 05:24 PM
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IIS Diagnostics Toolkit

Microsoft has packaged an IIS troubleshooting toolkit available for download.

The toolkit includes:

  • Authentication and Access Diagnostics tool
  • SMTP Diagnostics tool
  • SSL Diagnostics tool
  • Log Parser 2.2

The SMTPDiag tool is quite basic but automates the MX query and SMTP connections for testing a specific sender and destination address combination.  This could be valuable for someone using IIS SMTP as a gateway/relay.

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on March 31, 2005 at 08:52 AM
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Quest Groupwise Migrator Discount

To celebrate the migration of 1.5 million users from Netware to Windows, Microsoft and Quest last week announced an agreement allowing enterprise customers with 1000 seats or more a 20% discount on Quest's Groupwise Migrator for Exchange. (Groupwise Migrator for Exchange evolved from the product line acquired with the purchase of Wingra Technologies.)

This offer, along with improved support in the Exchange migration tools added to Exchange Server 2003 Service Pack 1 (see MS KB 329041), should help some companies with their migration challenges.

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on March 30, 2005 at 08:03 AM
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ORF Enterprise Edition 2.0 Released

Version 2.0 of the highly respected Vamsoft Open Relay Filter (ORF) Enterprise Edition - has been released today.

Chris Meirick on March 29, 2005 at 08:31 PM
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Outlook Skype

I've been using Skype for a couple of weeks now, using the fantastic Cyberphone K (it's taken me so long to get round to trying Skype as I really dislike using headsets) and it's been really impressive so far... free (good quality) calls to my fellow geeks, and cheap calls to overseas family members... and now, I've remembered there's an Outlook add-in which might make things even better!...  Outlook Skype

Chris Meirick on March 29, 2005 at 08:15 PM
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Microsoft Office Visio 2003 Connector for the Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer (MBSA)

This looks very cool!

“Securing your network has just gotten easier. The Visio Connector for MBSA lets you view the results of a Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer scan in a clear, comprehensive Microsoft Office Visio 2003 network diagram.”

Chris Meirick on March 23, 2005 at 12:05 AM
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ExBPA v2.0 Is Here

ExBPA v2.0 has been released and you can grab it here.  This version has support for MOM 2005 which I wrote about yesterday.

There are many improvements, such as the support for MOM 2005, multiple language suppport, DNS collector, scheduling capabilities, a new 'best practice' category, an improved scanning scope, etc, etc.

You can find out about all the new features of this version via the readme.

Neil Hobson on March 16, 2005 at 10:51 PM
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Exchange IMF Update

Microsoft has released an update for the Intelligent Message Filter (IMF).  Grab it here!

Overview:

This update to the Intelligent Message Filter SmartScreen filter contains updated spam characteristics that improve the ability of Intelligent Message Filter to block unsolicited commercial e-mail messages, also known as spam. You must have Intelligent Message Filter installed to install this update.

Note This download is available in English only. For more information, see the Readme

Neil Hobson on February 2, 2005 at 09:28 PM
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MAPILab Toolbox

Ten Outlook plug-ins for $24... can't beat that for value!... the MAPILab Toolbox...

"Ten absolutely different plug-ins for Outlook in one package at the price of one! And moreover: all the MAPILab Toolbox updates are free for a year, so you will have 7-12 additional plug-ins to those ten!

MAPILab Toolbox components:

  1. File Fetch. Now you can receive any file from your computer to your e-mail! It is absolutely safe: you can limit the folder list from which you can take a file, to specify the file list to be sent on your request, set the password on the file request and set the password to the archive with the file being sent. Even if somebody finds out how to request the file he/she won't be able to get it from the sent archive all the same! Do you often get phone calls with the request to send you the price list? Now you can reply: "send me an e-mail with the "price list" subject and my computer will immediately send you the latest copy at any time of the day".
  2. File Send Automatically*. As soon as you change the price list do you have to send it to all your partners? This plug-in will do it for you automatically: it will "keep an eye" on the specified files and as soon as they get changed will send them itself. You will have time to correct a mistake: you can ask it to wait a few seconds or even hours after the file has been changed - thus, you will have time to correct the document. And it is not necessary for you to remember whether you have sent it or not!
  3. Attachments Forget. This small plug-in will ask you whether you have forgotten to attach the promised file in case it doesn't see the attachment in the message containing the phrase the kind of "see the attachment".
  4. E-mail Scheduler. Do you have to send one and the same message regularly (say, every Friday)? This plug-in will do it for you! You can attach the files to the message as well as to specify the path for the plug-in where it must take the new files to be attached to the message. Do you have to send new documents to the central archive every evening? No problem!
  5. Task E-mail Scheduler*. An alternative variant of previous plug-in. You can create a task, attach a message to it and specify the key word. In this case the message attached to the task will be sent while the task is being activated.
  6. E-mail Reminder. Do you often happen to be out of your office? The plug-in will resend the reminder about the meetings and tasks to your pager, cell phone or PDA using e-mail! Practically all cell operators have got a channel between the e-mail and SMS, that is why this plug-in is compatible with any mobile device!
  7. Batched Mail. It is a unique plug-in! If your provider limits the number of the messages sent this plug-in is for you! Now you can specify the interval for the messages and the maximum number of the messages to be sent during an hour. If there is a lot of messages waiting for their turn to be sent in your Outbox you can specify for the plug-in to send highly important messages out of turn.
  8. Contacts Journaling. Do you know that you can enable journaling for the contact? In this case you can trace the correspondence with this person. But somehow you can do it in Outlook only for each contact individually and only in the main Contacts folder! We have corrected this odd thing: now you can enable journaling for all contacts in all folders at once.
  9. Mailing List Service*. Do you need to take all the addressed of the people who wrote to you about the error and send them a universal answer? You will have to extract the senders' addresses from their messages one by one. Only in case you don't have Mailing List Service! It can store the addresses in the files of various formats, add them to the address book, contacts or mail list. The address source can be messages, contacts and files on a disk.
  10. Message AutoFill*. Do you always have to send message copy to your boss if you answer the message in the folder named "very important"? Or do you always have to use a certain account if you send the message being in the "My Yahoo mail" folder? All this and a lot more will help you to automate Message AutoFill. "

Chris Meirick on January 27, 2005 at 02:08 PM
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InBoxer 2, Spam 0

"It is round two for my favourite client-based spam filter, InBoxer. Regular readers may remember how much I liked this application, an Outlook plug-in that removes spam without removing email you might actually want to read - its incredibly low false-positive rate is what attracted me to the product, because I cannot afford to take the risk of important messages getting zapped. Whether from existing clients, prospective new ones or even you, dear reader, I need to know that I'm the one who decides what is read and what is binned.".... Davey Winder, PC Pro...

Chris Meirick on January 26, 2005 at 09:03 PM
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Microsoft Exchange Server Best Practices Analyzer Tool - Update

"This download contains the latest ExBPA.Config.xml and ExBPA.chm files. Use this package to update your existing installation of the Exchange Server Best Practices Analyzer. NOTE: If Internet connectivity is available, the Exchange Server Best Practices Analyzer will attempt to automatically update itself from the Internet. Where updates are being applied automatically, there is no need to download the Web Update Pack."

Chris Meirick on January 18, 2005 at 09:17 PM
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Scriptomatic Version 2.0 Released

The Scripting Guys improved, updated and released their ScriptomaticV2 utility.

I love WMI.  You see it in action within Exchange System Manager and the Exchange Best Practices Analyzer.  There is a lot of valuable information easily retrieved through scripts thanks in part to Windows Management Instrumentation. 

The Scriptomatic HTML Application makes is extremely simple.  It can generate scripts in VBScript, Perl, Python and JScript.  When the script is executed through the .hta interface, you can select outputs of Command Prompt, Plain Text, Excel Spreadsheet, HTML or XML.

On a default install Exchange 5.5 Server on Windows 2000 Server, I selected the WMI Class Win32_PerfRawData_MSExchangeIS_MSExchangeISPrivate from the WMI Namespace root\CIMV2.  Saving the VBScript generated returns the following example:

On Error Resume Next

Const wbemFlagReturnImmediately = &h10
Const wbemFlagForwardOnly = &h20

arrComputers = Array("EX55W2KIRV01")
For Each strComputer In arrComputers
   WScript.Echo
   WScript.Echo "=========================================="
   WScript.Echo "Computer: " & strComputer
   WScript.Echo "=========================================="

   Set objWMIService = GetObject("winmgmts:\\" & strComputer & "\root\CIMV2")
   Set colItems = objWMIService.ExecQuery("SELECT * FROM Win32_PerfRawData_MSExchangeIS_MSExchangeISPrivate", "WQL", _
                                          wbemFlagReturnImmediately + wbemFlagForwardOnly)

   For Each objItem In colItems
      WScript.Echo "ActiveClientLogons: " & objItem.ActiveClientLogons
      WScript.Echo "AverageDeliveryTime: " & objItem.AverageDeliveryTime
      WScript.Echo "AverageLocalDeliveryTime: " & objItem.AverageLocalDeliveryTime
      WScript.Echo "Caption: " & objItem.Caption
      WScript.Echo "CategorizationCount: " & objItem.CategorizationCount
      WScript.Echo "ClientLogons: " & objItem.ClientLogons
      WScript.Echo "Description: " & objItem.Description
      WScript.Echo "FolderOpensPersec: " & objItem.FolderOpensPersec
      WScript.Echo "Frequency_Object: " & objItem.Frequency_Object
      WScript.Echo "Frequency_PerfTime: " & objItem.Frequency_PerfTime
      WScript.Echo "Frequency_Sys100NS: " & objItem.Frequency_Sys100NS
      WScript.Echo "Localdeliveries: " & objItem.Localdeliveries
      WScript.Echo "Localdeliveryrate: " & objItem.Localdeliveryrate
      WScript.Echo "MessageOpensPersec: " & objItem.MessageOpensPersec
      WScript.Echo "MessageRecipientsDelivered: " & objItem.MessageRecipientsDelivered
      WScript.Echo "MessageRecipientsDeliveredPermin: " & objItem.MessageRecipientsDeliveredPermin
      WScript.Echo "MessagesDelivered: " & objItem.MessagesDelivered
      WScript.Echo "MessagesDeliveredPermin: " & objItem.MessagesDeliveredPermin
      WScript.Echo "MessagesSent: " & objItem.MessagesSent
      WScript.Echo "MessagesSentPermin: " & objItem.MessagesSentPermin
      WScript.Echo "MessagesSubmitted: " & objItem.MessagesSubmitted
      WScript.Echo "MessagesSubmittedPermin: " & objItem.MessagesSubmittedPermin
      WScript.Echo "Name: " & objItem.Name
      WScript.Echo "PeakClientLogons: " & objItem.PeakClientLogons
      WScript.Echo "ReceiveQueueSize: " & objItem.ReceiveQueueSize
      WScript.Echo "SendQueueSize: " & objItem.SendQueueSize
      WScript.Echo "SingleInstanceRatio: " & objItem.SingleInstanceRatio
      WScript.Echo "SingleInstanceRatio_Base: " & objItem.SingleInstanceRatio_Base
      WScript.Echo "Timestamp_Object: " & objItem.Timestamp_Object
      WScript.Echo "Timestamp_PerfTime: " & objItem.Timestamp_PerfTime
      WScript.Echo "Timestamp_Sys100NS: " & objItem.Timestamp_Sys100NS
      WScript.Echo "TotalCountofRecoverableItems: " & objItem.TotalCountofRecoverableItems
      WScript.Echo "TotalSizeofRecoverableItems: " & objItem.TotalSizeofRecoverableItems
      WScript.Echo
   Next
Next

Download Scriptomatic.  Play with it.  Put it to work for you.

Also, The Scripting Guys sense of humour is very evident in the accompanying Readme doc.  A good read. 

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on January 18, 2005 at 07:59 AM
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LifeKeeper for Exchange

"LifeKeeper for Exchange is the industry's most comprehensive and scalable solution for ensuring the highest levels of Exchange Server availability.

LifeKeeper for Exchange is scalable to address all levels of availability requirements, from local Exchange data replication for backup, to local automated failover, to complete wide-area disaster recovery of Exchange at a remote site.

LifeKeeper for Exchange integrates fully with Exchange Server and provides a comprehensive, automated, hands-off solution that is easy to implement.

LifeKeeper for Exchange is from SteelEye, the industry leading specialist in Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery solutions for Intel® environments."

Chris Meirick on January 11, 2005 at 09:14 PM
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Lucatec MASK Outlook Add-in

"The Lucatec Mask Add-in for Microsoft Outlook is a small utility which automates certain routine tasks if you're working with a Microsoft Exchange Server and have set up public eMail accounts for individual departments, branches or tasks of your organization.

Apart from your personal email address/mailbox you may have access to one or more shared mailboxes or public folders, e.g. for your department or for special tasks like support enquiries. If you want to send an email as coming from a shared mailbox or public folder, you have to manually add the "From" field via the View menu and enter the respective sender address there. Otherwise the mail would be sent with your personal email address and any replies would end up in your personal mailbox (and you would have to move same to the shared mailbox for other users to be able to view it).

This is where Lucatec Mask steps in: It will automatically determine the correct sender address to use based on the mailbox or public folder the user is currently located in within Outlook. Additionally, it offers the option to move or copy the sent message to the relevant account's Sent Items folder (or the originating Public Folder itself)."

Chris Meirick on January 11, 2005 at 09:10 PM
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RSS Popper

"RSS Popper is an RSS/ATOM/RDF news aggregator that delivers news to Outlook. It allows the leveraging of Outlook powerful functionality for reading news feeds."

Chris Meirick on January 10, 2005 at 09:00 PM
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Microsoft ActiveSync 3.8 Released

"Microsoft ActiveSync 3.8 is the latest synchronization software for Windows Mobile-based Pocket PCs and Smartphones."

Chris Meirick on January 8, 2005 at 08:17 PM
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Microsoft Exchange Server Best Practices Analyzer Tool Update

Web Update Pack - Configuration, rule and help updates for the Exchange Server Best Practices Analyzer 1.x

Chris Meirick on January 6, 2005 at 03:35 PM
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Bells & Whistles for Outlook

Shortly before Christmas, version 2.0 of the Outlook add-in Bells and Whistles was released... it's got some neat features and is well worth checking out. Marc Orchant has reviewed the add-in over on The Office Weblog as have About.com.

Chris Meirick on January 5, 2005 at 09:08 PM
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Mailntercept for Microsoft Exchange

Came across this product today... looks interesting...

"For those organizations that already make use of an Internet (SMTP) e-mail content filtering software, Mailntercept for Microsoft Exchange adds an extra value: Content Security for internal Exchange 2000/2003 messages utilizing existing SMTP based content security system.

Mailntercept is not a content scanner. Mailntercept works as an “Intercept Module” for messages circulating between Exchange 2000/2003 users. All internal e-mails are redirected to the existing SMTP Content Security system for analysis and application of appropriate security policies."

Chris Meirick on January 5, 2005 at 08:48 PM
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FetchExc 0.5

"FethExc is java utilily which retrieves mail from your MS Exchange (2000/2003) inbox and forwards it to SMTP server of your choice. FetchExc uses webDAV (OWA) to retrieve mail either over http or https."

Chris Meirick on December 28, 2004 at 07:07 PM
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IMF Companion

"Microsoft® Exchange Intelligent Message Filter (IMF) is an extension of the Exchange 2003 product, to help companies reduce the amount of unsolicited commercial e-mail (UCE), also known as spam, delivered to the users inbox. IMF puts suspected messages away in an archive subdirectory of the Exchange mailroot folder structure. With large numbers of messages filtered by IMF (Microsoft® Exchange 2003 Intelligent Message Filter), administrators have to decide what to do with the contents of the archive. IMF Companion allows administrators to view, delete or unblock filtered messages. The unblock function returns message to the pickup directory in order to allow Exchange to deliver the message to the user inbox."

Chris Meirick on December 28, 2004 at 11:07 AM
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Mail Archive Pro Reviewed

Marc Orchant has reviewed Mail Archive Pro, "a Complete Email Storage and Search Tool for Microsoft Outlook," over on the Office Weblog.

Chris Meirick on December 11, 2004 at 08:07 PM
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Outlook Skype

"The next big thing in the IT world is telephony and voice. There will be a lot of interesting developments in this area in the years to come. One of those developments is already here: Skype. It is a peer-to-peer network based IP Telephony application. I like it a lot and decided to build an Outlook add-in for it. "

Chris Meirick on December 10, 2004 at 10:55 PM
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blogbot for Outlook

"Stay up to date with your favorite blogs, wikis, and news sites from within Outlook! If you are one of those people that consider Outlook their most essential information tool, then this software is for you. Blogbot runs quietly behind the scenes to determine if new content is available from the feeds you subscribe to. It then posts these items into folders within your Outlook."

Chris Meirick on December 10, 2004 at 10:31 PM
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ExBPA 1.1 - What's New?

As Chris said right below this post, ExBPA 1.1 is now out.  So what's new with this release?  Here's what Paul Bowden says:

1.1 provides some improvements and refinements to the overall ExBPA experience. There are no major code changes in 1.1, we've focused mainly on usability improvements.

Here's a quick list of the improvements in 1.1

Installation

You can in-place upgrade from 1.0 to 1.1 (i.e. no need to remove previous versions from Add/Remove Programs)

You can now specify the data directory (where the output XML files are kept)

Ability to launch ExBPA at the end of the MSI install

Incorporates the very latest ExBPA.Config.xml (configuration & rules) and ExBPA.chm files (version 1.6.3.1)

Update Checking

ExBPA checks to see if a new version of the binaries are available (in addition to the ExBPA.Config.xml file)

ExBPA can auto-download new binaries and perform in-place upgrades of the tool

There's a new "Cancel this check" option if you wish to bypass update checking

Better text and error messages

General

Text clean-up in the user interface. Reworded many sentences.

Uses a global catalog server rather than domain controller to ensure mailbox count is correct

Validation performed on credentials (if entered)

Scan Options

You can now enter an identifying label for the scan. This label will be part of the output XML filename as well.

Scan Results

More report options providing a better breakdown of items found

Non-Default Settings, Recently Changed Settings, and Baseline output is broken out into separate reports

'Items of Interest' report lists out all information events

'Run Time Log' shows the list of events and errors encountered during collection and analysis

The 'Tell me more.' links for non-problem events (such as a Non-Default setting) is more appropriate

Pressing CTRL-E on a node whilst in the Summary/Detailed View expands all child nodes (NOTE: This option can be resource intensive)

Better support for launching non-IE browsers

Neil Hobson on December 8, 2004 at 08:38 AM
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Exchange Server Best Practices Analyzer Version 1.1

Version 1.1 is here... go download!

"The Microsoft Exchange Server Best Practices Analyzer Tool is designed for administrators who want to determine the overall health of their Exchange servers and topology. The tool scans Exchange servers and identifies items that do not conform to Microsoft best practices."

Chris Meirick on December 7, 2004 at 03:20 PM
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Print Folder Messages - Outlook Add-in

"Did you ever had the need of printing all messages in a folder? And what about printing messages as they arrive to your Inbox?

This add-in (RSOutlook's Print Folder Messages) will answer this question, it can print all messages in a folder or print messages as they arrive.

This add-in is easy to work with, is inside Outlook, and has an extremely simple user interface."

Chris Meirick on November 24, 2004 at 12:15 PM
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ExBPA Web Update Pack

"This download contains the latest ExBPA.Config.xml and ExBPA.chm files. Use this package to update your existing installation of the Exchange Server Best Practices Analyzer."

Chris Meirick on November 23, 2004 at 08:52 PM
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Office 2003 Add-in: Microsoft Outlook SMS Add-in (MOSA)

"This download will enable you to send SMS text messages through most Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) mobile phones connected to your PC using Microsoft Office Outlook 2003."

Chris Meirick on November 19, 2004 at 01:26 PM
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"Access Outlook data without booting your ultra-portable"

jkOnTheRun has published a post on Phoenix Technologies' interesting Firstware Assistant 2004 product...

"FirstWare Assistant will be added by the computer OEM and is a program that lets you fully interact with your Outlook data while the computer is still booting."

Chris Meirick on November 17, 2004 at 10:26 AM
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SenderID Framework Downloads

With the recent updates in the effort to standardize SenderID, Microsoft has updated their SenderID Framework information downloads.

The most recent revision is the "Sender ID Framework and Intellectual Property Overview and FAQ" (pdf).

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on October 26, 2004 at 07:51 AM
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'ExchMbx' Mailbox Manipulation Tool

Summary
"Command line tool for doing various Exchange tasks such as mail enabling/disabling users, contacts, groups. Mailbox enabling/disabling users. Moving mailboxes." (via bink)

Chris Meirick on October 20, 2004 at 11:02 PM
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ExBPA Baseline FAQ

Jack Bennetto of Microsoft has posted an ExBPA Baseline FAQ to the Microsoft public newsgroups. In case you missed it, I've repeated the information here.

Baseline comparisons provide a way to compare settings on one server against another. You choose one or more "control" servers, and the servers to match against each one. ExBPA checks certain settings in each computer against the control, and generates issues if they don't match. Baselines were one of the last features added to ExBPA prior to our release, and are still undergoing development. If anything particularly bothers you, speak up, and we'll look into improving it.

Running Baseline Comparisons

How do I do a baseline comparison?
Go to the page "Start a new Exchange Scan" and the drop-down "Select the type of scan to perform", and select "Baseline." Click on "Baseline" below it to open the server lists. Choose the servers you want to compare.

I don't see "Baseline" in the drop-down box.
The config file in the MSI didn't include any baseline settings. You need to have a recent version of the config downloaded from the web.

How should I select the servers?
Choose one server as a control server, one that has a standard, stable configuration. Check its box on the left-hand list. While it's selected, check the servers in the right-hand list that you to compare against it. If you have several groups of servers you expect to have different settings (for example, mailbox vs. public folder vs. frontend, or Exchange 2003 vs. 5.5), choose a control server from each group. Do the above for each one: check the control server on the left side, then check the other servers in the group on the right side.

Can I put a server in more than one baseline group? Can I compare a control server against another control server?
No and no. Generally, these shouldn't be necessary, and the restrictions help you keep track of which servers aren't included in a group. Let us know if it bothers you, but there are technical reasons as well, so don't expect a fix soon.

Why do the servers keep moving around when I check them?
That's how the above restrictions are enforced. Once a server is selected, it's removed from the list for other servers.

But I lost one of the servers. It was there before and I can't find it. Where did it go? Look at all the other servers to see if it's checked on one of their lists. If it's not obvious, try checking all the servers of the left-hand list, so they are all control servers. Then it's easy to look through all those control servers. If you still can't find it, try converting any servers in groups to control servers. Alternatively, you can look for it in the registry keys under HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Exchange\ExBPA\Baseline, but don't tell anyone that I told you that.

The Command Line

How do I run a baseline comparison using the command-line tool?
You first need to set up the baseline categories using ExBPA.exe. At that point, baseline comparisons are done automatically.

How do I NOT run a baseline comparison using the command-line tool?
By default, the ExBPACmd runs all categories. To only run the "General" category (which is done in the ExBPA.exe "Health Check"), use the "-rc General" option.

Baseline Reports

What does "0<>1 (FOO)" mean? I already know zero doesn't equal one.
It means that some setting has a value of "0" on the server in question, but "1" on the control server FOO. To figure out which setting, you'll need to look at the issues in the Detailed View. The baseline messages in the next version of the config released on the web (sometime in the next couple weeks) will include more information.

Can I configure ExBPA to compare additional settings?
No. Well, it theory you could muck with the config file, but that's really not supported, and you'd have to reapply your changes whenever it's updated. So you probably don't want to do that. If you have suggestions for additional settings that should be compared, please let us know.

Can I generate a report that contains both baseline checks and regular errors?
You need to run collection using the the command-line version (which does both) and import it into the ExBPA GUI.

What if I want to compare against a prior run?
Wait for version 2. :)

Neil Hobson on October 9, 2004 at 09:51 PM
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ExBPA WebCast Q & A

Jon Avner of Microsoft has posted a list of questions that were asked during the ExBPA WebCast to the Microsoft public newsgroups. Due to the number of questions, I have decided to upload them to this site as a text file rather than have a very long blog post covering all questions.

Download the text file here.

Neil Hobson on October 9, 2004 at 09:38 PM
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SQL Server 2000 Report Pack for Microsoft Exchange

"Overview
The SQL Server 2000 Report Pack for Microsoft Exchange is a set of 13 Microsoft SQL Server 2000 Reporting Services reports that work with a Microsoft Exchange sample reporting database.

With the Report Pack, you have the choice of using the sample reports either as-is or as templates for designing new reports using the SQL Server Reporting Services Report Designer.

This Report Pack includes the following reports:

Current - All Mailboxes (By Folder)
Shows folder statistics over all folders. Tip: Be on the lookout for especially large mailboxes.
Current - Folder Tree Sizes (By User)
Shows the folder tree and size of items contained within each folder of a specific user's folder. Drill down for breakdown. Tip: Find the largest folders and the largest items so you can free up space.
Folder Tree Sizes (All)
Shows the folder tree and size of items contained within each folder for all user's folders since the last extraction. Drill down for breakdown. Tip: Find the largest folders and the largest items so you can free up space.
Outgoing - Sent E-mails for User (Plain Table)
Compares the number of items found in users' Sent Items box. Tip: The highest send the most e-mail, which often correlates to the hardest workers.
Outgoing Sent E-mails for User (With Graph)
Compares the number of items found in users' Sent Items box. Tip: The highest send the most email, which often correlates to the hardest workers.
Outgoing Sent E-mails for User (With Bar Chart)
Compares the number of items found in users' Sent Items box. Drill down for breakdown. Tip: The highest send the most email, which often correlates to the hardest workers.
Outgoing - Busy Receivers of Our E-mail
The top 50 people who were sent email from members of our organization.
Incoming - Received E-mails for User (By Date)
Compares the number of items found in users' Sent Items box. Drill down for breakdown. Tip: The highest receive the most e-mail, they probably stress out the most.
Incoming - Busy Receivers of Incoming E-mail
Shows how many emails were received into peoples' inbox.
Outgoing - By Keyword
Examines the content of mail items to indicate which key phrases are being used by employees based on items in their Sent Items folders. Tip: Configure with your product names to see the e-mail activity by product.
Outgoing - Largest E-mail Senders
Shows the people who sent e-mail with the largest sizes.
Extraction Log (All Records)
Shows all of the Extraction Log records, including time to extract data from Exchange and store to the database for each user.
Extraction Log (Last Extraction)
Shows the Extraction Log records for the most recent extraction, including time to extract data from Exchange and store to the database for each user."

Chris Meirick on September 28, 2004 at 05:57 PM
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Microsoft Exchange Server Best Practices Analyzer Tool Update

This download contains the latest ExBPA.Config.xml and ExBPA.chm files. Use this package to update your existing installation of the Exchange Server Best Practices Analyzer. NOTE: If Internet connectivity is available, the Exchange Server Best Practices Analyzer will attempt to automatically update itself from the Internet. This update package is designed for installations that do not have access to the Internet.

Chris Meirick on September 26, 2004 at 06:50 PM
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iPodSync - Sync Outlook calendar. contact, tasks and notes

iPodSync is a tool for Windows users to keep your Microsoft Outlook calendar. contact, tasks and notes synchronized between your PC and your iPod.

Chris Meirick on September 22, 2004 at 04:49 PM
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Microsoft Exchange Server Best Practices Analyzer Tool

Microsoft has released a new tool to "verify the overall health of your Exchange Server messaging environment." The Exchange Server Best Practices Analyzer Tool is an excellent summary report of your Exchange installation. Using several mechanisms, such as WMI, it collects data from Active Directory, Registries, and the IIS Metabase, among others. "In all, it gathers over 1200 settings and checks them against over 1000 rules."

There is a Command Line version, ExBPACmd.exe, installed with the application as well.

You can read more about its development and functionality at the Microsoft Exchange Team Blog.

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on September 21, 2004 at 08:32 PM
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Tablet Enhancements for Outlook - New Release

Einstein Technologies have released v2.0 of Tablet Enhancements for Outlook...

Tablet Enhancements for Outlook is an add-in for Microsoft Outlook XP and 2003 that turns the popular Personal Information Manager into a full-fledged Tablet PC-aware application. TEO 2.0 replaces Outlook's standard UI with fully ink-enabled forms and lets you write and keep your notes in your own handwriting. No synchronization required.

Chris Meirick on September 21, 2004 at 05:34 PM
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SSL Diagnostics Tool

Here's a useful tool to add to your toolbox if you get involved with configuring SSL within your Exchange environment: SSLDiag. The installation also includes an SSL FAQ guide which is really useful if you wish to learn more about SSL.

Overview:
A common problem for administrators of IIS servers is configuring and troubleshooting SSL enabled websites. To assist in administrators efforts, Microsoft has designed a tool - SSL Diagnostics - to aid in quickly identifying configuration problems in the IIS metabase, certificates, or certificate stores.

This tool allows users to review configuration information in a easy to read view mode or to run the tool silently with only the creation of a log file. During use, administrators can simulate the SSL handshake to find errors. They can also quickly "hot swap" certificates for testing purposes.

These packages come in two forms: Express and Full. The express will only give the pertinent tools for administrators to use SSL Diagnostics while full install installs the same files with the appropriate documentation. Included in the full install is a SSL Frequently Asked Questions that can assist in the learning of SSL for administrators.

Neil Hobson on September 15, 2004 at 08:54 AM
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Open Source Exchange connector

Danish company OMC have created an Open Source Exchange connector...

"We have developed a CORBA based framework on top of the Messaging Application Programming Interface commonly known as MAPI.

Our development framework is offering client applications MAPI based access to any MS Exchange server from version 5.5 onwards. We believe that we are providing the Open Source community with a development framework that are superior to any other approach.

Our solution is distributed under the GNU General Public License (commonly known as the "GPL").

Why do we do it?
We feel that there is a strong customer need for a non-Microsoft client application with full Exchange integration that is feature-by-feature comparable with Microsoft Outlook.

The only technically feasible way to achieve this level of integration is to build a client access framework on top of MAPI.

Out strategy is therefore to provide this framework to the Open Source community free of charge under the GPL and to the any commercial entity under a commercial license.

So, what is it?
We call our client access framework Brutus"

Chris Meirick on September 10, 2004 at 01:36 PM
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“While You Were Out” Outlook Add-in

Michael Hyatt has written a new VBA Outlook tool called “While You Were Out.” WYWO basically lets his PA take a phone message when he's unavailable, complete a message form in Outlook, and send it to him as both a formatted e-mail and task. No more missed messages. What a great, simple idea! There's a detailed explanation of the functionality along with installation instructions and code on Michael's blog. He's also looking for a programmer to write a COM add-in for it.

Chris Meirick on September 8, 2004 at 09:47 AM
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MOM 2005 Now Released

Microsoft Operations Manager has received an update. MOM 2005 evaluation version is available for download.

MOM 2005 will be available in a Full version and a slightly limited Workgroup edition, which are compared here. They will be generally available in about a month.

"...all MOM 2000 management packs will continue to work with MOM 2005," such as the Exchange 2003 Management Pack and Exchange 2003 Management Pack Configuration Guide.

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on September 1, 2004 at 04:07 AM
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Exchange 2003 Post sp1 Store Hotfix

I just saw this new knowledgebase article covering an information store issue after applying service pack 1 for Exchange 2003: Microsoft Exchange Information Store service crashes periodically after you install Exchange Server 2003 SP1.

SYMPTOMS
After you install Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 Service Pack 1 (SP1), the Microsoft Exchange Information Store service may crash periodically. When this problem occurs, events that are similar to the following may be recorded in the system event log on the server.

Thankfully, I have not experienced this in practice.

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on August 19, 2004 at 09:57 PM
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Exchange 2003 CBT

CBT Nuggets has added an Exchange Training CD for the Designing a Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 Organization exam (M70-285). This is one of the core messaging exams required for the MCSE: Messaging on Microsoft Windows Server 2003 certification.

CD-Rom Contents: Designing a Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 Organization

- Exchange 2003 Design Considerations
- The Exchange Server 2003 Administrative Model
- Integrating with Active Directory
- Designing with Other Messaging Systems
- Upgrading from previous Exchange versions
- Designating and Designing Exchange 2003 Servers
- Achieving a fault-tolerant DNS solution
- Forming a Public Folder Infrastructure
- Devising a Strategy for Data Storage
- Achieving Fault Tolerance and Enhanced Performance
- Designing a Backup and Recovery Solution
- Planning the Exchange 2003 Routing Group Topology
- Exchange 2003 Virtual Protocol Server Strategies
- Client strategies for Exchange Server 2003
- Protecting the Organization from Internal Attacks
- Protecting the Exchange Environment from External Threats
- Designing an Authentication and Encryption Methodology

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on August 19, 2004 at 10:03 AM
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RSS Feeds for Exchange Administration

RSS syndication can be applied almost anywhere especially where there are incremental changes to data content.

This is not lost on Glen Scales who, as posted on his Exchange Dev Blog, has been working on a script to generate the necessary XML based on updates to the message tracking log. If message tracking is enabled, Exchange will append to a daily log, message information incrementally. There are several applications that can analyze the message tracking logs and produce reports on the content. But Glen's Exchange Message Tracking Logs RSS Feed Script is a good start toward publishing message tracking log information for people, probably management, to subscribe to down to the user level. Perhaps we will soon see management or administrators getting that information as the tracking log is updated throughout the day.

Glen has been busy applying RSS feeds concepts to Exchange administration, including the basics of an RSS Calendar Feed Event Sink and Public Folder RSS Feed Event Sink. Search his blog for more RSS ideas.

Thanks, Glen!

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on August 18, 2004 at 09:31 AM
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XBox OWA 2003 Theme

The XBox OWA theme has been made public according to Nino Bilic of Microsoft PSS in the Exchange Team Blog.

You can download the theme for Exchange 2003 Outlook Web Access from here.

Thanks, Nino!

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on August 14, 2004 at 01:15 AM
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OneNote 2003 SP1 Add-in: Send to OneNote from Outlook PowerToy

This new Powertoy looks really useful, I'll need to give it a spin in a moment :-)

Overview
Use the Send to OneNote from Outlook PowerToy to send e-mail messages to a OneNote 2003 SP1 page from Outlook 2003 with the click of a button.

There's some more info on this new PowerToy, including screenshots, over at the fantastic Tabula PC blog.

Chris Meirick on July 28, 2004 at 10:05 AM
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SalesOutlook Web Access

SalesOutlook have released SalesOutlook Web Access, which is a customer management system that uses Outlook Web Access...

"SalesOutlook, Inc. is announcing the launch of its low-cost extension to Microsoft Outlook Web Access (OWA) that enables users to manage customer information such as Accounts, Contacts and Notes right inside their OWA session.
When a SalesOutlook Web Access user adds or updates account-related information in OWA, it is immediately available to every SalesOutlook Web Access and SalesOutlook CRM user in the organization. With prices starting as low as USD $99.00 per user, it is a tool that any organization can afford to implement for every information worker that has a Microsoft Exchange Server 2002 / 2003 mailbox. Overloaded IT Professionals will appreciate the quick deployment, centralized administration and limited support requirements since no software or component installs are required on the client computer other than Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.0 or later.
"Providing the ability for individuals needing occasional access to the CRM system's data is something that our customers have asked for time and time again. Their requirements are that the tool must be very easy to use so that no training is required, and it must deploy with a zero footprint on the client. IT Administrators do not have time to install stuff on each computer and they do not want to get bogged down with a lot of remote user support. They simply want to have the user open a web browser, login to the system and start using it. Most of all, they don't want to pay a lot of money" states Dave Asta, Vice President of Development and Chief Operations Officer for SalesOutlook, Inc. as he describes the new SalesOutlook Web Access product. Mr. Asta concludes, "We responded with exactly what they want: a $99.00 tool that does the basics and is so simple it requires no training. The users just use it after opening their IE browser and logging into OWA. Anyone can afford this tool and will benefit by implementing it."

Chris Meirick on July 26, 2004 at 11:35 PM
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Directory Watch

"Directory Watch is an NT service that monitors up to six directories/queue’s. These directories could be message queues, file transfer queues, or any other directory that has the behavior of files moving in and out. You can keep an eye on things with Directory Watch.

With Directory Watch’s undetectable footprint in memory and your hard drive. It is ideal for monitoring critical applications such as E-Mail servers such as MAILsweeper or MS Exhange, FAX servers, Web server such as Webshphere or IIS."

Chris Meirick on July 24, 2004 at 12:05 AM
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SynchPst v1.4.7

Synchronize PSTs with SynchPst for Outlook

Key Features:
Matches your Outlook automatically among your computers (Professional edition only)
Synchronizes Outlook on two or more machines
Synchronizes Outlook with one click
Synchronizes your laptop with your desktop
Lets you share your contacts and calendars with your colleagues
Synchronizes contacts, mails, notes, appointments and tasks
Supports deletions
Synchronizes your whole pst file and / or only a special subfolder.

Chris Meirick on July 23, 2004 at 10:14 AM
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Download Lookout From Microsoft Download Center

Following Microsoft's acquisition of Lookout last week, the download for Lookout has now reappeared on the Microsoft Download Center

Overview
"Lookout is lightning-fast search for your email, files, and desktop integrated with Microsoft Outlook™. Built on top of a powerful search engine, Lookout is the only personal search engine that can search all of your email from directly within Outlook - in seconds...

You can use Lookout to search your:
Email messages
Contacts, calendar, notes, tasks, etc.
Data from exchange, POP, IMAP, PST files, Public Folders
Files on your computer or other computers
... Very soul (okay, not true)

Just enter your search and press enter. Results are instant. Lookout will find your search terms hiding nearly anywhere in your Outlook mailbox - subjects, bodies, phone numbers, addresses, etc."

Chris Meirick on July 23, 2004 at 09:55 AM
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J-Integra for Exchange

"Intrinsyc Software has extended the J-Integra Interoperability Suite with a new J-Integra for Exchange bridging solution that makes it easy and secure to use MS Exchange services from any Java web app or portal. "
Full story...

Chris Meirick on July 22, 2004 at 12:14 AM
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Public folder RSS Feed Event Sink

Messaging developer Glen Scales has lots of useful Exchange scripts on his blog, a recent one will update an RSS feed with public folder content...

"I've gone a bit RSS mad of late for today's edition I created an Event sink for public folders so when a new mail or post arrives into that folder it will fire a script that updates a feed with the last 7 days of posts. I guess the cool thing here is you can stick this on all the important public folders in your org and then use one web page to aggregate across all the feeds and present this back to the user as one single web page. Also it lets people subscribe to folders and receive notification of updates etc."

Chris Meirick on July 13, 2004 at 10:14 AM
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ADModify.NET

Steve Bink has revealed that the new version of ADModify is nearly ready for release to the MS public FTP site. Steve has a link to where you can download it from his site. Nice one Steve.

Neil Hobson on July 13, 2004 at 08:21 AM
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"TechHit - Outlook utilities that save you time"

EZDetach - "Save Attachments - Do you think you could use a little help managing email attachments? EZDetach for Outlook will help you effortlessly extract, remove, save attachments - manually or automatically, from one or multiple messages. It is extremely easy to use, yet very flexible and powerful."

MessageSave - "Save, Archive and Process Messages - Backup, process, share and save Outlook email messages with MessageSave for Outlook."

AutoRead - "Mark as Read, Remove New Mail Icon - Do you receive email that doesn't require immediate attention? AutoRead is an Outlook plugin that will let you automatically mark messages as read and/or remove the Outlook "New Mail" taskbar (tray) notification icon. AutoRead "users report significant productivity gains."

EZDelete - "Purge Messages - EZDelete places a button on the Outlook toolbar which let's you delete messages without moving them to the Deleted Items folder with one click of a mouse."

More info...

Chris Meirick on July 11, 2004 at 06:19 PM
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Performance Monitor Wizard

"Overview
The Performance Monitor Wizard simplifies the process of gathering performance monitor logs. It configures the correct counters to collect, sample intervals and log file sizes. This wizard can create logs for troubleshooting operating system or Exchange server performance issues."

Chris Meirick on July 11, 2004 at 06:12 PM
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IMF Archive Manager

Daryl Maunder has written an IMF Archive Manager application which he has kindly allowed me to make available here. It's a web-based application for managing the files archived by the IMF. The zip file that you download contains a set of ASP web pages and a readme Word document.

Once you have installed the application, just navigate to http://servername/spam - this URL, of course, assumes the default virtual directory name of 'spam'. You will see a screen like the one below - I've created a sample spam message to show you what it looks like.

IMF Archive Manager

From here, you can choose to View, Resubmit or Delete any individual message, or even delete all archived mail.

No warranty, express or implied, is provided. This code is supplied here "as is".

Neil Hobson on June 17, 2004 at 08:26 PM
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NewsLook v1.53

Simon Smith, author of the NewsLook add-in that allows you to read and write to Usenet newsgroups within Outlook, emailed me yesterday to say that version 1.53 of NewsLook had been released.

According to Simon, v1.53 is effectively RC1 and it can be downloaded here. Check out the release notes here.

Neil Hobson on June 1, 2004 at 08:51 PM
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E2K3 MOM Management Pack Configuration Wizard

Yet another Exchange 2003 tool for you to download if you use MOM: the Exchange 2003 MOM Management Pack Configuration Wizard. Many thanks to James Edelen for reminding me, because although I'd seen it, I'd forgotten to blog it. Must have been the mass of releases from Microsoft yesterday!

This tool provides a graphical user interface to configure Exchange 2000 and Exchange 2003 Management Pack, including test mailboxes, message tracking, and monitoring services.

Neil Hobson on May 26, 2004 at 09:15 PM
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IMF MOM Management Pack

Those of you running MOM and wishing to start using the Intelligent Message Filter will no doubt want to download the IMF MOM management pack. Well, it's here.

Neil Hobson on May 25, 2004 at 05:04 PM
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Exchange 2003 Service Pack 1

Exchange 2003 Service Pack 1 is now available!

Exchange Server 2003 Service Pack 1 (SP1) offers new updates and improvements to Exchange Server 2003. Enhancements include new language support for Outlook Mobile Access and Microsoft Office Outlook Web Access spelling checkers, and out-of-office modification, a larger text entry field, search folder support, and improved menu navigation for the Outlook Mobile Access user interface.

Updated deployment tools are included with SP1 to help you with site consolidation. Site consolidation involves moving Exchange servers from remote sites into a larger central site and allowing users in remote offices to access their mailboxes and public folders over the network. Site consolidation provides the following benefits:

The Exchange topology is simplified.

You can administer Exchange centrally and reduce administrative costs.

You can make better use of hardware because there are fewer mailbox servers as well as fewer auxiliary servers. A centralized datacenter can also increase scalability and availability.

Consolidating sites can help your organization reach the goal of running Exchange in native mode by reducing the number of Exchange 5.5 servers in the organization.

With fewer mailbox servers, there are fewer targets for security issues.

Neil Hobson on May 25, 2004 at 09:53 AM
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Sasser.A and Sasser.B Worm Removal Tool

Even though this worm has some sass, little gas and no class, Microsoft has released a Sasser removal utility.

Sasser leverages the recently patched LSASS vulnerability MS04-011.

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on May 2, 2004 at 09:24 AM
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A Question of Organisation Synchronisation

A question that comes up frequently in the newsgroups and on various mailing lists is how to synchronise two Exchange global address lists together. Exchange MVP Ed Crowley has often responded to such queries with the list below and I feel it makes quite a useful list to have at hand. Ed has kindly allowed me to duplicate this information here - thanks, Ed!

Available options to replicate directories between organisations include:

1. HP LDAP Directory Synchronization Utility (LDSU)

2. Microsoft Identity and Integration Server (MIIS)

3. MIIS GAL Sync tool (limited but free)

4. SimpleSync

5. MS Mail Dirsync (unsupported by Microsoft, but is supposed to work)

6. Active Directory Connector (in interorganizational mode)

7. Your own code.

Neil Hobson on April 30, 2004 at 09:25 PM
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Selective Journaling...

If you implement Exchange 200x's message journaling feature, you'll know that it only works on a per-mailbox store basis.

I've only just noticed, but developer Victor Ivanidze has an Exchange store event sink which allows you to set message journaling on a per-mailbox basis. Check it out here.

Neil Hobson on April 8, 2004 at 11:55 AM
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ViraLock

A colleague came across this product today...

ViraLock
"The only software guaranteed to prevent:
• an email virus spreading to your address book
• a virus hijacking your confidential files
• a spammer knowing you exist
Works alongside all anti-virus and firewall software. For Outlook/Outlook Express

On installation, ViraLock™ automatically encrypts all existing e-mail addresses found in your address book and within the folders (e.g., your inbox, sent items and personalized folders) of your e-mail program. It will also encrypt any e-mail addresses that you add later to your address book, as well as those contained in incoming e-mail. Viruses that circumvent your conventional anti-virus software will try to replicate by sending themselves out to your e-mail addresses. With ViraLock installed, the virus won’t find any valid e-mail addresses, and it will be unable to spread."

... have you used it, is it any good? Let us know.

While we're on the subject of viruses, the new W32/Bagle-O worm has the most impressive Subject Lines and Message Texts that I've seen for a while. They are all variations on "E-mail account security warning" and "Dear user... Your e-mail account has been temporary disabled because of unauthorized access," and the messages appear to have come from the 'IT Dept' with an internal address i.e. internaluser@yourdomain. The one I saw looked very impressive, no spelling mistakes, pretty good grammar, in fact it was probably better written than genuine communications that come from the IT Dept :-)

Chris Meirick on March 16, 2004 at 12:33 AM
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New Outlook Applications

Marc's highlighted another couple of very useful looking apps...

"PocketMac iPod Edition for Windows automatically converts and exports Contacts, Calendar, Tasks, Notes, and Email from Microsoft Outlook to the iPod. It will also reformat and copy Word documents to the iPod for viewing.

Lookout is a Microsoft Outlook plug-in that provides advanced, lightning-fast search capabilities to your mailbox. You can use Lookout to search your: email, attachments, contacts, calendar, filesystem. Search results come back almost instantaneously. It's like having Google for your mailbox!"

Chris Meirick on March 1, 2004 at 02:29 PM
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KnockOut: Microsoft Outlook Companion

"KnockOut is a free Microsoft Outlook companion product that allows you to easily monitor the state of Outlook on your computer. From a notification area icon, KnockOut can show you if Microsoft Outlook and Microsoft Word are running on your computer (even if no windows are showing on your taskbar). If one of these applications is in a hung state, you can terminate them right from the KnockOut menu. This will help clear up rare mystery situations, in which you think Outlook is not running because you see no windows on your taskbar, but when you launch Outlook again nothing happens because it is actually running in the background.

KnockOut also can help you control the Outlook notification area icons, allowing you to remove them from your taskbar. KnockOut can pop up optional balloons (Windows 2000 or later required) which can also be configured to show you what version of Outlook you are running on your computer.

In addition, KnockOut lets you create Outlook items (mail messages, appointments, contacts, tasks, etc.) from anywhere you are in Windows, whether Outlook is running or not. Simply click the KnockOut icon in the taskbar, select the type of item you would like to create, and it comes up immediately. The KnockOut menu is customizable, so that you can easily get to your favorite items as quickly as possible."

Chris Meirick on February 25, 2004 at 10:25 AM
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IMScribe 5.0 Released for IM Archiving

Cordant has upgraded its Instant Messaging archiving solution, which archives Exchange 2000 Instant Messaging traffic to a SQL 2000 Database.

IMScribe 5.0 provides a pathway for upgrading to Live Communications Server 2003 later.

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on February 19, 2004 at 09:05 AM
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ORF SMTP Sink for MyDoom

The script wizards at Vamsoft have created an SMTP Event Sink for their clients which tests SMTP mail for the features of the MyDoom@MM/MiMail.R/Novarg worm.

The sink is written in JScript and is available here.

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on January 28, 2004 at 05:35 PM
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eEye MyDoom@MM/MiMail.R/Novarg Remediation Tool

Even though Microsoft expresses that Outlook, Outlook Express, and Webmail are vulnerable, it is really any Windows host with an email client that allows the receipt of .zip attachments. If a user executes the content of the .zip without current antivirus, then they may be infected.

Because this virus creates a backdoor vulnerability on infected clients, the fine folks at eEye Digital Security have released a discovery and remediation tool for the MyDoom@MM virus for network administrators.

This tool provides a centrally managed remediation solution.

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on January 28, 2004 at 01:37 AM
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CalShare Updated

The updated version of CalShare now allows you to share your Outlook contacts and appointments with any other Outlook user in the world... and it's free.. (via Slipstick)

Chris Meirick on January 10, 2004 at 12:00 AM
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Exchange-Specific Firewall Appliance

Network Engines has added to their suite of appliances with a firewall appliance based on Internet Security and Acceleration (ISA) Server 2000 specifically for the Exchange Server market.

Their Press release (in .pdf) is here.
And you can also read about it here.

It is expected to actually ship in January 2004 with a price tag of just under $3,000.

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on December 11, 2003 at 08:45 PM
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Centrally Control Exchange Permissions & Settings

Quite often I see requests for information on how to centrally manage permissions in Outlook and Exchange. I've written about this issue on the blog before.

I've come across an interesting site today, thanks to Tim Coveney of Microsoft. The ExCentre suite of tools from Symprex may be of interest to you:

Folder Permissions Manager - Centrally manage permissions on mailbox folders and public folders.

AutoArchive Manager - Centrally manage auto-archive setting on mailbox folders.

Mailbox Manager - Centrally manage account information on mailboxes.

Out-of-Office Manager - Centrally manage out-of-office information on mailbox folders.

Neil Hobson on November 28, 2003 at 05:12 PM
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Group Policy Inventory Tool

Here's a new tool for you to play with this week... it's not Exchange related as such, but I thought it would still be worth a mention... it's called Group Policy Inventory... here's the overview...

"Group Policy Inventory (GPInventory.exe) allows administrators to collect Group Policy and other information from any number of computers in their network by running multiple Resultant Set of User Policy (RSOP) or Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI) queries. The query results can be exported to either an XML or a text file, and can be analyzed in Excel."

It's simple to use, just choose some machines that you want to target from either AD or a text file, select the information to be gathered... OS, Service Pack, Installed Apps, CPU, Disk Space and so on... and Run.

Chris Meirick on November 17, 2003 at 05:03 PM
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OST to PST

Here's a useful addition to your toolbox... it's a tool that will create a PST from an orphaned OST file.

Chris Meirick on July 9, 2003 at 12:11 AM
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