Exchange & Outlook UPDATE, Exchange Edition--June 13, 2003
- Responsible Administration
- Get Exclusive VIP Web Site Access!
- Learn 10 Ways to Deal with Spam!
- XADM: White Paper - Upgrading from Exchange Server 5.5 to Exchange 2000 Server: A Six-Step Case Scenario
- Featured Thread: Trouble Accessing OWA from Another Country
- Security 2003 Road Show
5. New and Improved
- Strengthen Email Security
- Submit Top Product Ideas
6. Contact Us
- See this section for a list of ways to contact us.
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==== 1. Commentary: Responsible Administration ==== by Paul Robichaux, News Editor, [email protected]
One of the many aspects of parenting is teaching your children to be safe so that they can survive to adulthood ("Thomas, get off the roof!"). Exchange Server administrators bear similar responsibilities. No, we're not supposed to wander around making sure that users are wearing proper safety equipment as they try to unjam the copiers--see the Naval Safety Center's Photo of the Week collection ( http://safetycenter.navy.mil/photo/default.htm ) for some entertaining eye-openers along those lines--but we do need to apply what we know about messaging systems to help users follow good messaging practices. Perhaps more important, we need to try to be aware of and improve organizational messaging policies.
Let's start with users. How many of your users understand the basic operation of your Exchange system? Users don't need to know the difference between a front-end server and a box of donuts, but it's useful if they understand where Exchange can queue (and thus delay) email messages, as well as the general processing steps (e.g., spam filtering, virus scanning, archiving) that take place along the route between the outside world and their Inboxes. I've found that users who have this knowledge are less likely to complain about transient performance problems or queue blockages. (Of course, teach them too much and you'll start getting design advice!)
Also educate users about malicious software (malware--e.g., viruses, malicious ActiveX controls, Trojan horses). If you have antivirus software--and you should--does everyone understand what it can and can't do? Do your mailbox owners understand basic attachment protocol, such as not opening attachments that they aren't expecting? Again, users don't need a deep technical understanding; even a brief explanation as to where they can find legitimate information about viruses can make your life easier and keep your organization calm when a new virus hoax starts making the rounds.
As for organizational policies, does your company have an acceptable use policy (AUP) for email? If so, users should already know about and understand the policy. If you don't have an AUP in place, consider adding one. An AUP provides valuable legal protection for your organization and helps set users' expectations for privacy, security, and service levels when using your corporate Exchange resources.
Speaking of AUPs: If you have one, does it contain anything that isn't technically feasible or clear cut? Many policies contain boilerplate language written by messaging-clueless legal departments. A little of your attention can help protect your company from legal troubles. Consider a simple case: User A learns that User B is stealing from the company and tells Manager C. Manager C comes to you and asks to inspect User B's mailbox. Should you give Manager C access? Hint: If you do, you could face legal action by User B if he or she is fired because of something the manager finds in the mailbox. Your best action is to require the manager to make the request in writing and access the mailbox in the presence of an HR representative and without your presence.
Such concerns might seem silly, and bringing them up with users or management might even elicit the kinds of groans I occasionally get when reminding my sons to put on bicycle helmets or get off the top of the backyard playset. However, I know things they don't, which is why I insist. You're in the same position, so use your knowledge to help protect yourself and your company from needless troubles.
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==== 2. Announcements ==== (from Windows & .NET Magazine and its partners)
Get Exclusive VIP Web Site Access!
The Windows & .NET Magazine VIP Site is a subscription-based online technical resource that's chock-full of problem-solving articles from all our publications. For a limited time, you can access this banner-free site at which you'll find exclusive content usually reserved for VIP Site members only. Only VIP subscribers can access this site after June 13, so check it out today!
Learn 10 Ways to Deal with Spam!
In this audiocast event, you'll discover simple but effective ways to fight spam, plus learn the common tricks spammers use to get your email address. You'll also receive a free white paper from NetIQ about controlling spam and the chance to download a free trial of NetIQ MailMarshal SMTP. Register today!
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==== 3. Resources ====
XADM: White Paper - Upgrading from Exchange Server 5.5 to Exchange 2000 Server: A Six-Step Case Scenario
Each week, Microsoft posts several Exchange Server how-to articles to its Knowledge Base. This week, study a fictional deployment scenario that illustrates a clear procedure for migrating from Exchange Server 5.5 to Exchange 2000 Server. http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=326280
Featured Thread: Trouble Accessing OWA from Another Country
A forum reader is trying to figure out why users can't access Outlook Web Access (OWA) while traveling in another country. To offer your advice or join the discussion, go to the following URL: http://www.winnetmag.com/forums/rd.cfm?cid=40&tid=60055
==== 4. Events ==== (brought to you by Windows & .NET Magazine)
Security 2003 Road Show
Join Mark Minasi and Paul Thurrott as they deliver sound security advice at our popular Security 2003 Road Show event. http://list.winnetmag.com/cgi-bin3/DM/y/eA0GwOeX0CCG07Kz0Al
==== 5. New and Improved ==== by Carolyn Mader, [email protected]
Strengthen Email Security
GROUP Technologies announced iQ.Suite 3.0, software that strengthens Exchange Server 2003 email security by providing antispam, antivirus, and content-filtering capabilities on the server and the messaging platform. The suite includes securiQ.Wall for detecting spam and identifying suspicious HTML formatting, securiQ.Watchdog for filtering .gif and Microsoft Word and Microsoft Excel files, and securiQ.Trailer for adding sender signatures to all outgoing email messages. For pricing, contact GROUP Technologies at [email protected]
Submit Top Product Ideas
Have you used a product that changed your IT experience by saving you time or easing your daily burden? Do you know of a terrific product that others should know about? Tell us! We want to write about the product in a future Windows & .NET Magazine What's Hot column. Send your product suggestions to [email protected]
==== Sponsored Links ====
FaxBack Integrate FAX into Exchange/Outlook (Whitepaper, ROI, Trial) http://list.winnetmag.com/cgi-bin3/DM/y/eA0GwOeX0CCG0BAoJ0Ap
==== 6. Contact Us ====
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