Setting an auto reply for a distribution group

First, let’s get one thing out of the way – distribution groups cannot send automatic responses by themselves.

Using Reject the message with the explanation / enhanced status code transport rule actions to send auto-replies for a distribution group is not a good idea either. Firstly, because it defeats the whole purpose of maintaining a distribution group (the original message is blocked, thus not reaching the members of the group). Secondly, because the automatic messages sent by the actions are very very bare-bones (as you can see here).

Autoreply for distribution group

The most common solution to these grievances is a shared mailbox with a have server reply using a specific message rule underneath it.

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Exchange 2007 end of life on April 11, 2017

The end is near. At least the end of the Extended Support cycle for Exchange 2007. We have already mentioned it last year in Goodbye Exchange 2007, but it is high time we posted a reminder, as Exchange 2007 end of life is scheduled on April 11, 2017. This is not the end of the world. However, if you use Exchange 2007, you should consider all pros and cons of migration to a newer version. The process is not just a matter of a few clicks and even a whole month may prove not to be enough to finalize the move.

Exchange 2007 End of life and extended support

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How to split CSV file into multiple files using PowerShell

In various situations you may find that you need to evenly divide a large CSV file into multiple smaller files.

This may be the case, for instance, when you are preparing a staged migration and need to divide a list of mailboxes into batches, but not only then.

Split CSV file into multiple files using PowerShell

Luckily, splitting CSV files is exteremely easy to achieve using PowerShell.

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Secure Exchange migration – keep your data safe

Exchange Server migration is a complex process. It requires much preparation and planning. One of the main issues of concern during the transition is security. Administrators are well aware of how important it is to ensure confidential information safety at all times, so that there is no data loss or leaks. Microsoft provides its clients with native tools used for migrations, but administrators often choose third party products in order to have more freedom in managing migration process. It is good to know why such a choice is made.

secure on-premise exchange migration

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How to export users from Active Directory

You might need to export users from Active Directory in more than one situation. Good examples include Exchange migration and creating a test Exchange environment. You can imagine how painful it would be to do those tasks manually, especially in a large organization. Luckily, users can be exported easily from Active Directory and saved into a CSV (comma separated value) file. In this article I am going to show you how to do it.

Before we start, a quick word on the CSV files which are used to save users’ data. Lists created in this file format have headers in the first row. Those headers correspond to the names of AD users’ attributes. Below the headers, a list of users begins, each row for one user. Users’ attributes are sequenced exactly as in the headers. It is important to know that not all attributes have to be filled. However, if you want to leave certain fields blank, you should stick to the order from the first row. You can edit CSV files using e.g. notepad or Excel. Keep in mind that Excel is much better in this case, as it allows filling many fields at once with the same value. Besides, tables are much better at organizing data, which will come in handy.

Below, you have three different methods you can use to export users from Active Directory. Every single method results in creating the same CSV file. If you can use PowerShell, we highly recommend the last method, as it is the quickest one.

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Exchange/Office 365 Hybrid Configuration Wizard – step by step guide

Deploying a hybrid environment is one of the most complicated tasks a system administrator faces during migration to Office 365. It might take weeks of collecting data about the infrastructure, reading publications, planning migration stages and testing. What is more, even with all this effort, there is no guarantee that everything will turn out just fine. This article gives a step by step guide to getting through the Exchange/Office 365 Hybrid Configuration Wizard (HCW). After that, I give an insight into what actions the HCW performs in the background. Finally, the last section is a guide on how to analyze logs and solve problems connected with deploying a hybrid environment.

To go straight to an activity performed by Hybrid Configuration Wizard, click on one of the links below:

  1. Validating On-premises and Online Exchange Connection
  2. Collecting data about Exchange configuration from the on-premises Active Directory
  3. Collecting information on the Exchange online (Office 365) configuration
  4. Creating new Federation Trust and the required certificate in the local Exchange
  5. Creating new Hybrid Configuration Object in the local Active Directory
  6. Changing settings of on-premises Exchange server
  7. Configuring Organization Relationship between the local server and the cloud
  8. Setting connectors on both Exchange servers
  9. Enabling MRS Proxy
  10. Configuring Oauth

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