Skip navigation

A Sample Design

You can use the following steps to implement the sample Exchange 2000 Server design I present in the article "Fortify Your Email Transport, Part 1." This design assumes that you have at least two servers in each routing group. (For information about creating routing groups see the Microsoft article "XADM: How to Create a Routing Group". For information about assigning servers to routing groups, see the Microsoft article "XADM: How to Assign a Server to a Routing Group "). These steps don’t cover the configuration of perimeter servers; too many variations exist to discuss that process in this column. Finally, the design assumes that you’ve already created DNS MX records to establish an inbound domain and an outbound domain for use in the smart-host definitions.

Establish Routing Group Connectors (RGCs) between Sites

  1. From Exchange System Manager (ESM), expand the appropriate routing group object and select the Connectors container. Right-click the container and select New, Routing Group Connector from the context menu.
  2. Name the routing group and define a cost associated with the connector’s use. Use a short but meaningful name; something similar to "Source to Destination" is a good choice. The value you specify for the cost will depend on your network and your overall routing design.
  3. In the Connects this routing group with drop-down list, choose the destination routing group.
  4. If you want to assign specific roles to the server in the routing group, select the These servers can send mail over this connection option, then click Add to specify one or more bridgehead servers.
  5. If the destination routing group contains multiple servers and the role of one or more of those servers is to accept incoming mail for the other servers, you need to specify the remote bridgeheads. Go to the Remote Bridgeheads tab, click Add, and select the remote bridgehead servers.
  6. The RGC defines a one-way communications path. When you set up one side of the link, the Exchange System Manager (ESM) prompts you to automatically create the other half. (For example, if you just created an RGC named Denver to Houston in the Denver routing group’s Connectors container, the ESM will automatically prompt you to create an RGC from Houston to Denver in the Houston routing group’s Connectors container.) If you have the administrative rights to create the other RGC, click Yes and repeat steps 2 through 5. After you’ve created both sides of the link, create RGCs between any other routing groups as appropriate.

Creating SMTP Connectors

  1. Expand the appropriate routing group object and select the Connectors container. Right-click the container and select New, SMTP Connector from the context menu.
  2. Name the Connector. Again, use a short but meaningful name—something that designates this as the primary outbound SMTP connection.
  3. Select the Forward all mail through this connector to the following smart hosts option and enter the name of the outbound domain that corresponds to the appropriate perimeter system (e.g.,
  4. Click Add, select the server that will be primarily responsible for handling outbound mail (e.g. Hub2), then click OK.
  5. Go to the Address Space tab.
  6. Don’t change the default connector scope (i.e., Entire Organization).
  7. Click Add, select SMTP, then click OK three times.
  8. Repeat steps 1 and 2, but this time, use a different name that designates this connector as the secondary outbound SMTP connector.
  9. Repeat step 3.
  10. Click Add, select the server that will be the backup server for handling outbound mail (e.g. Hub1), then click OK.
  11. Repeat steps 5 and 6.
  12. Click Add, select SMTP, then click OK once.
  13. Change the cost of the address space definition to 10, then click OK two times.

Last But Not Least

  1. Configure your perimeter system to direct email to the inbound domain that corresponds to the Exchange SMTP servers (e.g.,
  2. Congratulations, you’re finished!
Hide comments


  • Allowed HTML tags: <em> <strong> <blockquote> <br> <p>

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.