Control Panel in hosted Exchange 2010 SP2

In the past I’ve blogged about building a hosted Exchange 2010 SP2 environment. Basically you have to prepare Active Directory, create a hosting container where all customer containers (also referred to as organizations, not to mess up with an Exchange organization) are located, secure the OU’s etc. Also you have to create Address Lists, Address Book Policies, Offline Address Books (do not forget to secure these to prevent unwanted downloads) and all this in a reliable and consistent manner.

It is certainly doable with a lot of scripting and HTML knowledge (been there, done that) but the overall recommendation is to use a Control Panel vendor. You can find an overview on the Microsoft website: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/exchange/hh563895.aspx

Using a Control Panel

There are a number of vendors, each having their own pros and cons but all work according to the same principle using a provisioning engine. This provisioning engine is talking to all services in your environment like Active Directory, Exchange, Lync or Sharepoint. It is also possible to add even more services like CRM, Hyper-V, online backup or Azure.

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Empty a mailbox using Exchange Web Services

Currently I’m working on an environment where 6,000 test mailboxes are created. During test migrations all kinds of information is stored in these mailboxes. You can use Exchange Web Services to empty these mailboxes.

To empty the (test) mailboxes you need the following:

  • Exchange Web Services Managed API;
  • An account with enough permissions to empty the mailboxes;
  • A script that does the actual plumbing.

The Managed API can be downloaded from the Microsoft website: http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=13480 and it runs on Windows 7 clients or Windows 2008 (R2) servers.

The script will logon to the mailboxes with an account that needs sufficient permissions. You can set the permissions on the Exchange CAS Server using the following commands:

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Publish Lync Services in TMG

In an earlier blog post I explained how to setup a Lync Server 2010 in your Lync organization. Using a Lync Server you can give access to external users and implement federation services. You also might want to implement publishing rules on your Threat Management Server (TMG) 2010 to implement the following additional services:

  • Enabling external users to download meeting content for your meetings.
  • Enabling external users to expand distribution groups.
  • Enabling remote users to download files from the Address Book service.
  • Accessing the Microsoft Lync Web App client.
  • Accessing the Dial-in Conferencing Settings webpage.
  • Accessing the Location Information service.
  • Enabling external devices to connect to Device Update web service and obtain updates.

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Microsoft UC Specialist