Show Exchange Message Size Limits in SBS 2008/2011

Full mailboxIt seems like every month I get a call about someone not being able to send or receive an email due to size limits. If you know where all the limits are in the Exchange Management Console (and if you’re aware of the 30% bloating that happens with email attachments) you can usually resolve that issue pretty quickly. If you’re new to Exchange, or a bit rusty, it might take longer.

Here’s a way to see all of your Exchange attachment limits in one screen.

Simple PowerShell Script to Show Exchange Message Size Limits

1. Copy and paste the following commands into Notepad.exe:

get-transportconfig | ft maxsendsize, maxreceivesize
get-receiveconnector | ft name, maxmessagesize
get-sendconnector | ft name, maxmessagesize
get-mailbox |ft Name, Maxsendsize, maxreceivesize

2. Save that text document with a .PS1 file extension, and you now have your PowerShell file. I named my file “email_limits.ps1”.

Example contents of file email_limits.ps1:Contents of file email_limits.ps1

Note: You can reuse this .PS1 file on any SBS 2008 (Exchange 2007) or SBS 2011 (Exchange 2010) servers.

3. Copy that file to your SBS server in a folder on the C: or D: drive.
I use a folder called “Scripts” on the D: drive.

4. Right-click the Exchange Management Shell and Run as Administrator.
Open Exchange Management Shell using Run as administrator
(Say Yes to any User Account Control prompt, if needed.)

5. In the Powershell window type the name of your .PS1 file (including the full path) and hit Enter.
Example: D:\scripts\email_limits.ps1

RESULTS

Example 1
SBS 2008 / Exchange 2007 (showing increased limits for a true 20 MB)*
Output of email_limits.ps1 on SBS 2008 / Exchange 2007

Example 2
SBS 2011 / Exchange 2010 (w/ factory defaults)
Output of email_limits.ps1 on SBS 2011 / Exchange 2010

*As you can see from Example 1, the Fax connector is still set at 10 MB, but the other limits have been changed to 29257 KB to allow for true 20MB attachments with the attachment bloating.
Formula for calculating overhead: (x MB * 1024) /.70 = limit in KB
Example: (20 MB x 1024) /.70 = 29257KB

Of course, you can also use PowerShell to change the limits, but I don’t have a script saved for that because the Set-ReceiveConnector, Set-SendConnector, etc.  commands require that the server name be included in the script.
Example: Set-ReceiveConnector “Windows SBS Internet Receive Servername” –MaxMessageSize 29MB

If I need to change the limits, I still just go old school and use the GUI in the Exchange Management Console.

Remember – there are four common places in Exchange where the email attachment size could be limited:

  1. Transport limit
  2. Receive limit
  3. Send limit
  4. Mailbox limit

We’ll show you where each one of those is located.

Exchange 2007 / 2010 Management Console Size Limit Locations

  • 1. Transport Limit

    Exchange Management Console | Organization Configuration | Hub Transport | Global Settings | Transport Settings | Properties | General | Transport Limits

    Attachment limit for Exchange Transport settings

    Note: a blank transport limit box means ‘unlimited’.

  • 2. Receive Limits
    (In SBS 2008 or 2011 there are typically 3 Receive Connectors)

    Location of Exchange 2010 Receive Connectors

    Exchange Management Console | Server Configuration | Hub Transport | Receive Connectors | right-click the receive connector | Properties | General | Maximum Message Size (KB)

    Attachment limit for Exchange Receive settings

    Note: The “Default {servername}” is your internal / .local connector.
    The “Windows SBS Internet Receive {servername}” is your external / .com connector. You’ll notice the difference in the Properties window on the FQDN line – one is .local and the other is .com/.org/etc.

    Also, regarding the internal connector, you may sometimes need to increase your “Default {servername}”(.local) connector to accommodate on-site scanners / multi-function copiers that scan to PDF and email internal employees. If so, this is where you do it. Just make sure the employees can receive attachments that large.

  • 3. Send Limit

    Exchange Management Console | Organization Configuration | Hub Transport | Send Connectors | Windows SBS Internet Send {servername} | Properties | General | Maximum Message Size (KB)

    Attachment limit for Exchange Send connector

  • 4. Mailbox Limits

    Exchange Management Console | Recipient Configuration | Mailbox | {username} | Properties | Mail Flow Settings | Message Size Restrictions | Properties | Maximum Message size (in KB)

    image

    Message size limits per for an individual user

    Note: a blank message size limit box means ‘unlimited’, but the user will still be restricted by the other the limits (shown in 1-3 above).

Bottom line: Use the sample .PS1 script to quickly make sure that all limits are set properly. Life is too short to dig through the GUI and check 4 or 5 locations manually if you don’t have to.

If you have any feedback or helpful PowerShell scripts that relate to email limits in Exchange 2007 or 2010, please feel free to post them in the comments.

More details: Official SBS Blog

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Tip – Showing Thumbnails in SBS 2008 / SBS 2011

Each month when we do test restores of client servers, we pick a few files to demonstrate and verify that the files are valid. And typically the files we choose are JPGs because you can ‘see’ that there is content in them, not just some hollow Word or Excel doc that ‘looks’ OK.

Using JPGs works great for SBS 2003. However, Server 2008 doesn’t show thumbnails by default, even if you select the Icon view, like this…

The Large Icons view shows icons, not thumbnails

…you don’t get thumbnails. You get little pointless icons.

But it’s easy to turn those icons into real thumbnails:

In Windows Explorer click Tools | Folder Options | View | uncheck the box that says Always show icons, never thumbnails | click OK.

In Folder Options, uncheck Always show icons, never thumbnails

Now you see thumbnails, even though the menu says ‘Icons’:

Look ma, thumbnails!

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Video – Using MultiPoint Server 2011 with an iPad

Yes, this is an iPad - get over itOne of the nice things about Windows MultiPoint Server 2011 is that you can use a variety of clients to connect to it and control it. Clients like:

  • Desktop PCs
  • Laptops
  • Netbooks
  • Thin clients
  • USB stations
  • Even iPads (yes, you read that right)

I put together a short two-part video showing how to:

  1. Remote control your iPad from a Windows PC, and
  2. How to control a MultiPoint 2011 server from an iPad.
     

Note: Part 1 of the video shows a jailbroken iPad. You do NOT need to jailbreak the iPad to control the MultiPoint server. I jailbroke it so I could remote into the iPad to shoot the video (and because jailbreaking is fun and lets you do stuff that Apple should have done originally).

You can do Part 2 of the video (controlling the WMS 2011 Server) with an off-the-shelf iPad 1 or iPad 2 and an RDP program from the iTunes App Store – rest assured that your warranty will still be intact.

Controlling Windows MultiPoint Server 2011 with an iPad

Well, it’s kind of short – 12 minutes Winking smile

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Whitepaper – SBS 2003 to 2011 Migration Doc

Whitepaper title: Migrate to Windows Small Business Server 2011 Standard from Windows Small Business Server 2003
File name: SBS7_Migrate2003.doc
Date Published: 01/12/2011
Language: English
File size: 724 KB
Pages: 83
Version: 1.0
Download URL: Click here

Description:

This guide explains how to install Windows SBS 2011 Standard in Migration Mode on a new server, and then migrate the settings and data from the old server that is running Windows Small Business Server 2003 to the new server that is running Windows SBS 2011 Standard. This guide also helps you demote and remove your old server from the network after you finish the migration process.

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How To Install SBS 2011 With A Bootable USB Drive

It seems like every release of Windows Small Business Server is bigger than the last, and SBS 2011 is no exception.  In fact, it’s downright HUGE! If you’ve downloaded the SBS 2011 Standard ISO from TechNet or MSDN, you’ve probably noticed that it’s actually too large to burn with a conventional DVD drive:

Sizes of ISO images for installing SBS 2003 R2, SBS 2008 and SBS 2011

Obviously, if you’re installing SBS 2011 as a Hyper-V child, downloading a 6.35 GB ISO straight onto the Hyper-V parent OS is no big deal. But if you want to install SBS 2011 on bare metal, you’ll probably need a bootable USB drive.

Here are the instructions on how to create your own bootable USB flash drive from scratch for installation of SBS 2011 Standard.

What you’ll need:

Update 2011/01/10 – As Kendall Morrison reminded me, your Windows PC needs to be running a 64-bit OS when you do this.

The demo environment.

For the purposes of this walkthrough, here are the drive letters on my Win7 PC:

  • The 6.35 GB SBS 2011 ISO is sitting in a folder on drive D:
  • The ISO will be mounted using Virtual CloneDrive in drive G:
  • The bootable USB drive will be drive H:

A Windows Explorer view of the drives on my Win7 PC

Go ahead and insert your USB flash drive, if you haven’t done so already.

Below is my drive layout in Disk Management.

A Disk Management view of the drives on my Win7 PC

Obviously, your drive letters will be different.

Step-by-step:

  1. In Windows Explorer, right-click the SBS 2011 ISO and mount it.
    Mount the ISO as a virtual drive (I'm using Virtual CloneDrive)
     
    Close the AutoPlay window (if one pops up).
  2. From the Start Menu, open an Administrative Command Prompt.
     
    Open the Command Prompt using Run as Administrator
     
  3. At the command prompt, type:

    DISKPART (hit Enter)

    LIST DISK (hit Enter)

    Open DiskPart and view the drives in your system
     

  4. Locate your USB flash drive in the list (mine is Disk 3).

    Type the following commands (hitting Enter after each one):

    SELECT DISK 3 (or whatever your USB disk number is)

    CLEAN

    CREATE PARTITION PRIMARY

    SELECT PARTITION 1

    ACTIVE

    FORMAT FS=NTFS QUICK

    ASSIGN

    Select the Disk, clean it, partition it, make it active, format it, and assign it a letter
     

  5. At this point, AutoPlay will probably pop up and tell you that a new disk was found which matches the drive letter of your USB flash drive.

    You can close the AutoPlay window

    Close the AutoPlay window (if one pops up).
      

  6. Back in the Command Prompt, type the following:

    EXIT (hit Enter)

    DiskPart will finish, but leave the Command Prompt window open.

    Exiting DiskPart

  7. Next we need to make the USB drive bootable. Type the following commands (hitting Enter after each one):

    G: (G: is my mounted SBS 2011 ISO drive)

    CD BOOT

    BOOTSECT.EXE /NT60 H: (H: is my USB drive)

    Command prompt instructions for making the disk bootable
     
    Close the Command Prompt window.
     

  8. Now we need to copy the install bits from the ISO to the flash drive:

    Open the mounted SBS 2011 ISO drive (which is drive G: for me)

    Highlight and copy all of the contents of the SBS 2011 drive.

    Copy the SBS 2011 installation files from the mounted ISO

    Paste the contents into the root of the USB drive (which is H: for me)

    Right-click the USB drive and paste the SBS 2011 installation files into the root

    The file copy will take a while (about 5-10 minutes), depending on the speed of your USB flash drive.

    File copy is complete

  9. Once the file copy is complete, safely eject the USB flash drive from your Windows PC and physically remove it.
     
    Eject the USB flash drive
     
  10. Unmount the ISO of SBS 2011 (which is drive G: for me)
     
    Unmount the ISO of SBS 2011 Standard

Now you just need to insert the bootable USB flash drive into your physical SBS 2011 box, set the boot option in the BIOS to boot from USB, and start the installation on the bare metal. Happy installing!

Props: IntoWindows.com blog

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Whitepaper – VHD Getting Started Guide

Picture of a giant hard driveWhitepaper Title: VHD Getting Started Guide
File name: VHD Getting Started Guide.docx
Data Published: May 27, 2010
Language: English
File size: 1.13 MB
Pages: 82
Download URL: Click here

Description:
This guide provides an introduction to virtual hard disks (VHDs) in Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2. It includes an overview of technologies that you use to configure VHDs, as well as procedures to help guide you through deploying VHDs.

Contents:

  • Virtual Hard Disks in Windows Server 2008 R2 & Windows 7
  • What’s New in Virtual Hard Disks
  • Getting Started with Virtual Hard Disks
  • Introduction to Virtual Hard Disks
  • How to Perform Common Tasks
  • Appendix: Tools, Scripts and APIs
  • FAQ: Virtual Hard Disks in Windows 7
  • Power Management for Network Devices in Windows 7
  • What’s New in Power Management for Network Devices

Source: Keith Combs’ Blog

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KYSBSUG Show Notes – Hard Drive Recovery

Data go 'bye-bye' sometimesThe Kentucky Small Business Server User Group (KYSBSUG) meeting #74 last week on Hard Drive Recovery had a fantastic turnout! I’d like to thank all who attended and a special thanks to Craig Mayfield for a killer presentation!

Here are the links for the resources mentioned in the presentation:

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How To Create a Bootable ShadowProtect USB Drive

ShadowProtect I really hate carrying around physical CDs/DVDs for programs I use a lot. Normally I just convert all my discs into ISOs with the free ImgBurn program (which totally rocks) and then throw the ISOs onto my Toshiba 320 GB portable USB drive. Then when I’m on-site if I need a CD, I just mount the ISO with Virtual CloneDrive (also free, and also rocks) and launch the program.

That said, sometimes you still need a bootable CD/DVD. For instance, when you want to image a workstation or server with StorageCraft ShadowProtect and backup the entire machine to an external USB drive.  Unfortunately, that means carrying the disc with you in your tech toolkit, or carrying the ISO and burning a disc.

Here’s a better idea – Use one of those old 1 GB USB flash drives gathering dust in your drawer, and turn it into a bootable USB drive.

Now, before you say “not BartPE and the HP Boot Flash Utility again”, we’re not using those old school tools. This is as modern as modern gets – using a Windows 7 64-bit ultimate machine and no physical CDs.

Note: These instructions are assuming you have already purchased a licensed copy of ShadowProtect from StorageCraft, and are simply looking to turn a boot CD into a boot USB flash drive.

What You’ll Need

  • ISO image of ShadowProtect or a ShadowProtect boot CD (471 MB)
  • 1 GB or larger USB flash drive
  • PeToUSB_3.0.0.7.zip (100KB)
  • Windows 7 workstation (I used a 64-bit Ultimate box, but YMMV)

Step-by-Step Instructions to Create the Bootable USB Drive

  1. Extract the downloaded PeToUSB_3.0.0.7.zip file into a folder on your desktop. You will see 3 files in there, but you only need  PeToUSB.exe
    Cool PeToUSB program
  2. Insert the physical ShadowProtect CD into your drive, or if you’re using an ISO, mount the ISO using Virtual CloneDrive (or some other ISO program).
    Mount the ISO or insert a ShadowProtect DVD
  3. Insert your USB flash drive.
    Insert the flash drive 
  4. Right-click the PeToUSB program, and choose RunAs Administrator.
    Make sure you RunAs administrator
  5. Select your flash drive from the pull-down menu.
    If this box is blank, you probably didn't use RunAs Administrator
  6. Check Enable Disk Format and check Quick Format boxes.
    Format and label 
  7. Browse to the ShadowProtect CD location.
    Find the physical CD or mounted ISO
  8. Click the Enable File Copy checkbox.
    image 

    Your settings should look similar to this:
    Double-check everything

  9. Click Start. On the Continue screen click Yes.
    Go baby, go.
  10. On the Are You Sure You Want To Continue screen, confirm that the correct flash drive is about to be formatted, and click Yes.
    Are you really sure?
  11. The drive will be automatically formatted and the files will start copying.
    PeToUSB is setting up the USB drive.
  12. When the format and copy are complete click OK.
    All done! 
  13. Safely Remove the drive, you’re done!

Now you can boot a workstation off the USB, plug in a USB drive large enough to hold the backup images, and create a backup of that target machine. Or, for some P2V action, you can use the free VMware Player (89.9 MB) to spin up that SPF as a virtual machine.

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KYSBSUG Meeting #71 – Passwords

Invitation – January 2010 KYSBSUG Meeting #71
Meeting Date: Wednesday January 20, 2010
Time: 6:30 PM Eastern
Location: Money Concepts
Address: 323 Townpark Circle, Suite 100, Louisville, KY 40243
Topic: “Password Security and Password Cracking

Dana Epp - Microsoft MVP Guest Presenter: Dana Epp, MVP (Enterprise Security)
Founder & President of Scorpion Software (makers of AuthAnvil)

Website: http://www.scorpionsoft.com/
MVP: https://mvp.support.microsoft.com/profile/Dana.Epp
Blog: http://silverstr.ufies.org/blog/

Description: Dana Epp is an industry-recognized expert in security and Microsoft MVP (2006-2010). Dana will talk about local and remote password security in SBS and SMB networks. He’ll also talk about topics such as two-factor authentication and tell you how you can implement this technology for your employees and customers.

Following Dana’s presentation, we’ll have a hands-on lab to demonstrate some of the tools on the market and methods to test (and break) passwords.

6:30 – 6:45 – Local events & introductions
6:45 – 7:30 – Dana Epp presentation (via GoToMeeting)
7:30 – 7:45 – Dana Q&A
7:45 – 8:20 – Hands-on Lab
8:20 – 8:30 – Door prize drawing and wrap-up

Door Prize: This month our door prize is an NFR copy of Windows 7 Ultimate.

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Training – Free SBS 2008 Hands-On Labs

image If you’ve been wishing for some structured Windows Small Business Server 2008 training offered by Microsoft, wait no more.  Microsoft has announced a set of four hands-on labs for SBS 2008, and (it gets better) it’s free!

Title: Windows SBS 2008 Hands-On Labs for Partners
Release Date: 9/25/2009
Version: 2.0
Download Size: 12.5 GB

The courses available are:

  1. Windows SBS 2008 Admin Console
  2. Windows SBS 2008 Working with Clients
  3. Windows SBS 2008 Installation
  4. Windows SBS 2008 Migration from SBS 2003

The downloads are available from the Microsoft Connect site:

URL: https://connect.microsoft.com/directory/
Invitation Code: SBSP-62B6-K3TH

System Requirements:

  • A machine that supports Hyper-V*;
        a server class** dual- or quad-core CPU is highly recommended
  • 5 GB of RAM min. (6-8 GB would be better);
        SBS 2008 requires a minimum of 4 GB of RAM, 
        Parent partition (Hyper-V host) requires 1 GB
  • 80 GB of free hard drive space;
        15 GB will be used initially but the VHDs could grow to a max. of 80 GB
  • Optional – router that will function between the SBS server and the Internet/corporate network
  • Optional – second physical network adapter to connect the SBS virtual machine to the router

Here’s a screen shot of the file downloads in the kit:

image

* Note: If you’ve never installed Hyper-V before, I’ve got a short video
(4:18 minutes) on YouTube demonstrating the installation.

** Server-class hardware is recommended, but not required since this is a HOL and not a production box. For example, here are my demo Hyper-V box specs:

  • HP Compaq dc5800 microtower
  • Intel Core 2 Duo E6550 2.33 GHz
  • 8 GB RAM
  • 1 ea. 149 GB SATA drive (OS)
  • 1 ea. 1 TB SATA drive (ISOs and VHDs)
  • Windows Server 2008 R2 Enterprise

To make sure that your machine supports Hyper-V (both in the BIOS and on the processor) check out the SecurAble download from GRC.com that tests hardware virtualization: http://www.grc.com/securable.htm

Props: Sean Daniel’s blog

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