What is an Exchange Server?

An exchange server is a type of server related tool that relays the information from the server to the massive number of computers that are currently asking for information from it. This has the major advantage of boosting the amount of information that can be sent from the server, and also means that you do not need to spend extra money on purchasing newer servers.

Exchange servers are most frequently used to communicate between computers that frequently communicate with each other as opposed to open internet requests for webpages. The most common use of an exchange server is internal communication systems such as company email systems. Exchange servers can also be used for bays of computers that are used for long distance company communication for such things as video conferences.

Exchange servers come with Microsoft exchange software that allows you to monitor the flow of traffic to and from your main server. This has the major advantage of allowing you to ensure that your exchange server is not being used as part of spamming or virus attacks. If you notice that your exchange server is sending information to places outside of the exchange network, or that it is processing a huge number of requests from IPs that are not common used by your company you can easily identify that something is wrong with the system. Because exchange servers are the internal part of this system you can easily fix the problem. Exchange servers can also track huge requests from computers inside of the network. This can help you to notice if one of your company’s computers has become a spam bot. There are a few different companies that offer exchange server monitoring solutions. Some companies offer free tools like Kernel Exchange EBD Viewer, while other companies offer paid products like Dotcom Monitor’s exchange server monitoring suite. Regardless of what you choose, it’s important to make sure that it fits your budget and works out well for your needs.

Another major advantage of using an exchange server in order to direct a closed email system is that you can easily make sure that the system will remain running. The server can be updated with the newest antivirus and firewall software exceptionally easy. An exchange server can even give you read out of the virtual memory held inside of the system that it is connected to. This can help you avoid having to shut down your system if you happen to run out of memory.

An exchange server is a stackable technology. This means that you will not need to purchase a whole new system when you start to max your virtual memory. Instead, you can simply add more exchanged and memory banks to your existing exchange server rack.

Don’t Forget to Keep Track of Your SLA!

In an ideal world, the company that provides you with your hosting services should provide you with everything that you pay for. This means that your website should maintain an up-time percentage of at least what your provider specifies, you should be able to use as much bandwidth as specified, and you shouldn’t have to worry about doing your own backups.

The unfortunate and all-too-real fact is that service providers don’t always deliver on what they promise. That makes it vital for you to know your service-level agreement (SLA) to the letter, as it’s one of the few things that should describe the services that your host is required to give you.

What is an SLA?

A SLA specifies an agreement between you, the client, and the provider of your hosting services. It’s usually legally binding, which means that it can be used as leverage to recover fees and damages when your provider doesn’t give you the quality of service you need.

Your SLA should cover the following basic things:

  • The basic statistics of your host’s service specific to your level of service, including allotted bandwidth transfer, maximum storage and up-time amounts.
  • The technology underlying your service, which should include both the specifications of the hardware, the environment that runs it, and what system redundancies are in place that will prevent data loss and service interruption.
  • The security procedures and services put in place to prevent data theft both off- and on-site.
  • Support procedures and service, including when support should be able to be reached and how you can do so.

Why Keeping Track of an SLA is Vital

Keeping track of your SLA can only be done after you understand the terms of your service-level agreement. Doing so will allow you to hold your hosting provider to the terms that they agreed to while giving you a way to seek compensation for any damages caused by a failure to deliver the appropriate quality of service.

The other major reason that you should keep track of your SLA is to prevent damages and other unfortunate incidents from occurring in the first place. Your provider should live up to their promise of providing you with the service, availability and security that you think your website needs from the time they begin providing you with service onwards.


Is It Really Necessary to Monitor an Exchange Server?

When running an IT department, you will want to take care of your mail server and ensure no errors occur. If you don’t, not only will you deal with serious repercussions in the short-term, but you will also put your data at risk. With this in mind, here are three reasons why it’s necessary to monitor your Exchange Server.

Faster speeds: Over time, if you don’t watch your server closely, it can slow down quickly. Think about it, if you have too many users or they are not using the server wisely, you will deal with slow emails and file transfers. To stay on top of this, you will want to watch the server and ensure files and emails flow quickly and without error. If they don’t, you will want to dig deeper and try to find the root of the problem.

Safety and security: Without a doubt, if you suffer from one data breach, you will lose money and some clients. To prevent this, you will want to watch your server and look out for any intruders. In fact, if you don’t employ this proactive approach, you are going to put your company at a huge risk for a hacking incident. Luckily, if you see an unknown user, you can quickly ban him or her and avoid problems. Of course, even a minor breach is a big deal. In the event of one, take extra precautions and investigate further. This alone is one reason why having exchange server monitoring in place is a good idea when it comes to being proactive about your network.

Sending spam with your server: If a hacker uses your server to send out emails all over the world, you will suffer a public relations problem. Not only that, when this happens, your ISP may ban your mail server. When this happens, you are in a world of hurt as you will struggle to communicate with clients. To monitor this, watch out for any intruders. To take it further, if you see a sudden increase in mail traffic, you will want to investigate the reason and take action. Otherwise, you will see your mail server banned.

If you know why you need to monitor your Exchange Server, you will avoid problems and save plenty of time and money in the long run.