Archive for Exchange

Smartphone won’t sync with Exchange 2007

I really like Exchange 2007.  My most active smartphone user has a Motorola Q that uses ActiveSync and he called in a panic the other morning because for about 12 hours his phone would not sync with the server.  He could send mail out, but he couldn’t get anything new in.

My first response was to have him reset his device, but that didn’t help.  So I went to the server, not really expecting to find anything there.  What I found were two consistant error messages in the Event Logs:  Event ID 1008 and Event ID 4999.

Here is the exact error for MSExchange ActiveSync Event ID 1008:

An exception occurred and was handled by Exchange ActiveSync. This may have been caused by an outdated or corrupted Exchange ActiveSync device partnership. This can occur if a user tries to modify the same item from multiple computers. If this is the case, Exchange ActiveSync will re-create the partnership with the device. Items will be updated at the next synchronization. . .

So I went back to the server to check the settings under Manage Mobile Device and noticed that I could “Remove Mobile Device Partnership.”  Since it wasn’t working anyway, I gave it a shot.  What do you know, after the users next sync he was ready to go.  Seems the partnership had corrupted and removing it and forcing a new one fixed our issue. . for now.

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New Cell Phone

I had to get a new phone and the first phone DH chose for me (yes, I let him pick because at first I didn’t really care what kind of phone I got) was the Verizon Voyager.  Wow, what a GREAT phone. It has a touch screen and a keyboard that was very easy to use for texting. Here is a little demo of that phone:

HOWEVER, the Verizon site said this was compatible with Microsoft Exchange Servers, which it is not. myblackberry1When I called tech support for help they were quick to point out that Verizon does not own any software that will push from a Corporate Exchange Server. So, since the folks at work were willing to pay for the phone and service if I got another phone, I began looking for a Blackberry or Windows Mobile phone. I chose the pink Curve and am happy with it. It is not quite as fun to text with, but it does have all the functionality I need. Now if I could just find a case for it that I like. . .

Exchange Trouble Leads to Learning

Why is it that I always learn best by fire?  Why can’t I sit down with a tech book and read about issues, problems and tools BEFORE I have a fire to put out?  Oh well, I don’t.  I usually only learn tech tricks by  having to put out fires on the job.  This was the case last week when our main Exchange server stopped sending mail and started to hold all the messages in the queues. 

I had not had to track anything in the queues before this, so looking at and using the Message Tracking Center Tool was new to me.  I found some useful information on how to do this at two sites; Computer Performance and Amset.info.

But for quick information on how to get to your queues, what you should see, and some quick troubleshooting tips I recommend these sites to get you started.  And by all means, check out you queues, see how messages normally flow so that when you do  have a problem you will know how things should work and may just be able to quickly resolve your trouble.

Backup Exec and Exchange 2003

So I had a bit of a panic attack over the weekend after our VP of IT called Friday to ask me to send him over a copy of our backup procedure.  I had the procedure ready (in my head at least, just needed to put it to keyboard and paper) but I also realized that in our backup of our Exchange server, we were not doing mailbox backups.

We use Backup Exec version 9, and we are backing up the drives and the Information Store and the Shadow copy Components, but not the mailboxes and public folders.  So, I started worrying and reading as frantically as I could.  What I found after reading quite a bit and trying (and failing) some test backups was that I didn’t need to backup the mailboxes.

According to the Help, “mailboxes and public folders are already included in the Exchange server database backups, but if you want to make the restore of a mailbox or folder easier, you can also select one or more mailboxes or public folders for backup seperately from the database.”  Now, ideally, I do want to backup the mailboxes seperate.  However, until I get that figured out, I am still backing up the data and can restore it in the event of a failure.

Now, back to getting the account setup correctly so I can backup the mailboxes individually. . .more on that later.

Treo 680 with Exchange E-mail Configuration

I had to setup my first Treo 680’s today for a couple of our new sales guys.  It wasn’t too difficult, but the instructions I was given by our AD Admin were a bit off so I wanted to document the steps here for the next time I need to setup these up.

1.  Install the SIM and batter and charge the battery.

2.  Call the support number to initiate the phone number.

3.  Install the Palm Software (via a disk in the box) on the user’s desktop.

5.  Connect the device to the desktop.

6. Setup e-mail by going to Mail, Menu, choose Microsoft Activsync from the provider drop down  and continue filling in the information as you get it from your e-mail administrator.

iPhone and Exchange

It only took a few days to find what I needed to know about Exchange and the iPhone.  I guess in all fairness, I was not looking super hard, but still it seems like it was hard to find information about this.

Anyway, it seems that ActiveSync will not be available until June for the iPhone.  That is not a big deal to me, I have a Blackberry.  But, for our graphics guy here who just got his cool new iPhone, it is a bit disappointing to have to wait so long just to check his work email account.

According to a blog by Peter Cohen over at Macworld ActiveSync, which is software that is used by Exchange to push email to mobile devices, will be released in June during a major software update.  We are already using ActiveSync here to push e-mail content to our Treo users, so I know this will work, but JUNE?  Wow.  I wish I would have known this when my user first came to me asking about whether or not he should get an iPhone.  Again, sure they are cool and all, but come on, if I am paying that much for a “smartphone” it darn well better be smart enough to deliver my mail.

Ah well, June it is.

Iphones – They May Look Cool, But Try Supporting Them

What a week.  I have my first Iphone inhouse, and it has been a pain trying to setup the little buggar to access our Exchange E-Mail.

According to an article I found on Apple’s site, you need to do the following:

Open port 993
Installl a digital certificate
Open port 587, 465, or 25

No problem, sounds easy, right? WRONG. Our network guys refuse to do the first one, assuring me that I should be able to use ActiveSync. Of course, ActiveSync isn’t available yet for the Iphone really, but when it is, this should all work quite nicely.

What a pain!! I am still searching to make sure I haven’t missed something. . .but for now. . .I have told my user he is out of luck, but I just hate that answer.

Deleting a Mailbox in Exchange

I was asked today to delete the mailbox for a user who has recently left the company.  Having never deleted a mailbox before, I thought it best to at least read up on it first before jumping right in and hitting the delete key.

A quick search brought me to a site I have used in the past to help with Exchange questions that I have had.  Armed with instructions and pictures I was able to quickly delete the users mailbox. 

We often have to change passwords around here, so I am very familiar with the ADUC (Active Directory Users and Computers) MMC, so that is how I accessed the Exchange delete tool.  Please note that what follows is a very quick fly-by for my own record keeping.  If you are going to delete anything from your Exchange environment, please do your homework.  Read books, check out Microsoft’s Exchange Support Pages, and by all means, talk to someone else who has been doing Exchange Administration for a while. 

What I did after finding my user in the OU was to right click on the username, from that menu I chose “Exchange Tasks”, from the pop-up menu choose Delete Mailbox and follow the prompts.  It was that simple.

And, just in case you do this all by mistake, there are instructions on the post above as well as additional links for recovering deleted mailboxes.

Second Mentoring Session – Installing Exchange Server 2003

We installed Exchange Server 2003 on our new network today. There wasn’t much to it, but I did want to put down just a couple of notes while I am thinking of it.

1. Exchange server does have some dependencies. You will have to install the following Windows Components (I did forget these once home, but a quick look on this very helpful site did indeed refresh my memory:

  • .Net Framework
  • ASP.net
  • IIS
  • World Wide Web Publishing Service
  • SMTP
  • NNTP

2. We installed Exchange in three steps, forestprep, domainprep, and setup.

3. There is a handly log file that is created on the root of the drive where Exchange is installed called Exchange Server Setup Progress.log for troubleshooting.

4. You have to be logged into the server as an administrator for the domain for this to all work as it should, and yes, you should definitely make sure your DCs are up and running.

Exchange Tips

Exchange Tips 

Yesterday we had some trouble with outgoing email, and while our bridgehead server is in another location, we do have an Exchange Server here that I am responsible for.  I am brand new to administering an Exchange Server, so I had to find some tips online for at least getting a feel for what may be happening and where things may be hanging up.

I wanted to do some basic troubleshooting for when messages are not going out, and a quick Google search for this turned up a few sites, the best of which was Exchange 911.

At their site, I found these tips that I used to begin tracking issues:

1.  Try to find where the message has gotten stuck by using the Message Tracking Center in the Exchange System Manager.

2.  Check the services running on the server where the messages are stuck to make sure all critical Exchange Services are indeed running.

3.  Checked the Event View on my server to make sure there were no obvious problems or sreaming errors.

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