Comprehensive Guide on Addressing Slow / Sluggish Outlook Performance to Microsoft Exchange

Identifying and Solving Performance Issues with Microsoft Outlook and Exchange

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A:  Yes, Microsoft continues to improve Outlook and Exchange, the change to Exchange 2007 and 2010 as 64-bit servers GREATLY improved how large Exchange databases can be, and Outlook 2010 now supports 64-bit clients that also improves the storage capacity on Outlook, however at the end of the day, Exchange is just a database, and Outlook is just a client software.  As much as Exchange and Outlook are being improved to handle more, by using email archiving solutions (even Exchange 2010 built-in archiving), organizations have options today to keep a lot of messages and data without having to keep them in the "primary" mailbox, but instead put old stuff in an archive.  It's like carrying along boxes of file folders in your car year after year.  Eventually you run out of space in your car, so you get a mini-van, then you run out of space in the mini-van to carry all the boxes, so you get yourself an RV to lug along your "stuff".  You can go back to your fast 2-door sports car by putting some of the old "stuff" in a trailer or in a storage unit so you can speed around instead of carrying all of the "stuff" with you, but still have fast access to the information when using an online archiving solution.

Q:  What does Microsoft have to say about email archiving and limitations on storage?

A:  See this Microsoft Exchange Team Blog, basically it covers the background of the same information I cover above:   http://msexchangeteam.com/archive/2005/03/14/395229.aspx

Q:  What's your credentials to make these statements about Exchange and Outlook performance?

A:  I worked with Microsoft on the development of Microsoft Exchange almost 2 decades ago, of which the basis of Exchange (the concept of EDB databases, log files, TCP networking, etc) have remained the same over the years.  I have worked with every version of Exchange over 2-years prior to the product's release and have written a bestselling book on every version of Exchange since Exchange v4.0 to and through Exchange 2003, Exchange 2007, and Exchange 2010 (my latest book, the 1350-page book "Exchange 2010 Unleashed" is the #1 selling book in the world on Exchange 2010 as was my book "Exchange 2007 Unleashed").  I have a 65-person consulting firm (Convergent Computing (http://www.cco.com)) that helps organizations plan, implement, and support their Exchange environments with clients implementing beta versions of Exchange 12-18 months in production envrionments before the product is even available to the general public, so we gather up a LOT of information on Exchange long before the product is publicly available, thus the books that we write are based on literally years of experience of a product even when the books ship the day the Exchange product ships.  Every month I'm somewhere in the world at some conference or convention speaking on Microsoft Exchange (typically on Exchange migration, performance tuning and optimization, and Exchange problem solving and debugging), and the information in this blog post is based on years of experience with the product, and day to day hands-on knowledge gained from the field in working with Exchange.

note:  I just posted a companion posting that addresses Exchange Calendaring problems (lost appointments, duplicate appoinments, meeting delegate problems, etc) and fixes for those problems up on http://www.networkworld.com/community/ExchangeCalendaringProblemSolutions 

note - March/2014:  I just posted a 2014 update to this information up on: http://www.networkworld.com/community/blog/microsoft-exchange-calendaring-problems-current-perspective-mar2014

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