Introducing Microsoft Exchange Server 2003
Exchange 2003 Server provides a reliable, extensible, and easy-to-manage platform with round-the-clock messaging and team support as well as affordability. Exchange 2003 Server supports a wide range of collaborative activities, including group calendaring capabilities, discussion areas, and group folders, and furthermore provides access to information that crosses geographic, logical, and architectural barriers with productivity enhancers that include Instant Messaging (IM), on-demand information, and video conferencing. Exchange 2003 Server introduced improvements over Exchange 2K Server in key technologies that address protection, performance, and remote and mobile communications.

Microsoft has ended support for Exchange 2003 Server, forcing network management face all the issues associated with maintaining an end-of-life messaging platform. Nevertheless, many Exchange sites are still running Microsoft Exchange 2003. Progent's Microsoft Gold certified IT consultants have extensive backgrounds maintaining Exchange 2003 and can help you to manage and troubleshoot your current Exchange 2003 environment or assist you to design and carry out an affordable upgrade to an up-to-date edition of Exchange. (See Progent's Exchange 2016 upgrade support services and Microsoft Exchange Server 2013 consulting.)

Improvements of Exchange 2003 Over Microsoft Exchange Server 2000
Exchange 2003 Server offers improvements in functionality over Exchange 2000 Server in crucial capabilities such as disaster recovery, throughput, protection, mobility, collaboration, and manageability.

  • Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 offers improved disaster recovery by adding the capability of eight-node clustering, faster failover, the addition of mount points which overcome the 24-drive letter limit, standard storage area network (SAN) connectivity, Volume Shadow Copy Service for database backup, a Mailbox Recovery Center utility, and a Restore Storage group.
  • MS Exchange Server 2003 enhances responsiveness via innovations such as /3GB and /USERVA startup switches for tuning the allocation of use of memory address space, public folder replication improvements, distribution list caching enhancements, and control of Out of Office messages.
  • Security enhancements offered by Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 include Internet Protocol security (IPsec) compatibility for front-end and back-end clusters, signed Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) requests to Microsoft Active Directory, front- and back-end Kerberos validation, IIS 6.0 security, limiting of distribution lists to validated users, real-time Safe and Block data, inbound recipient filtering, attachment restrictions in OWA, and public folders access improvements.
  • Exchange Server 2003 includes improved accommodation of remote and mobile users by adding an Outlook Web Access (OWA) user interface and a more extensive range of capabilities for Web Outlook client, Outlook 2003 performance improvements through MAPI compression, HTTP access from Outlook 2003, xHTML and HTML mobile phone browser support, plus syncing of notifications for handheld PCs.
  • Manageability and serviceability are improved by organizing queues on a per-server basis, enhancing the user experience, exposing all system queues, controlling cookie permission, utilizing Microsoft Exchange System Manager to move queue data, including a multi-user Move Mailbox feature, and adding dynamic distribution lists, public folder Send Contents, and public folder affinity to control referrals.

Advantages of Exchange 2003 Compared to MS Exchange Server 5.5
Exchange Server 2003 offered major enhancements in capability over Exchange 5.5 Server in key areas including access, manageability, protection, reliability, scalability, and speed.

  • Exchange 2003 Server offers a significant improvement in capability over the MS Exchange 5.5 web client. Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 offers an almost complete implementation of the traditional Outlook graphical user interface including scheduling and utilities. Because of this, mobile users have the benefit of complete, secure availability of email even if they don't have a laptop. All mobile users need is a web-attached PC with a standard web browser.
  • In contrast to MS Exchange 5.5 Server, which incorporates a built-in directory, Exchange Server 2003 takes advantage of Active Directory (AD), providing a greatly simplified administration and security structure. This makes Exchange Server 2003 easier to manage and maintain and also allows tighter protection.
  • Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 has a powerful foundation for transparently integrating non-Microsoft utilities including virus and spam scanning software. Microsoft Exchange 2003 Server's strong API does away with the technical risk often found with Exchange 5.5 Server when integrating independent software.
  • Exchange 2003 Server delivers greatly improved scalability and speed over Exchange 5.5. Enhancements include more and bigger mailboxes and speedier remote access.
  • MS Exchange 2003 Server also offers better searching capability, making it simpler and quicker to find important information when you have to have it.

Advantages Exchange 2003 Server Over an ISP-based or POP3 Email Environment
If your business is now using an email system hosted by an ISP or if you are running your Microsoft Outlook users in POP3 mode, Microsoft Exchange 2003 Server offers a wealth of enhanced capabilities in the areas of manageability, responsiveness, capacity, reliability, and collaboration:

  • Unlike the store-and-forward technique utilized by POP3 email environments, MS Exchange 2003 Server uses a central-store model that frees users from reliance on a specific desktop computer or laptop, reduces vulnerability to computer breakdown or virus attacks, and allows both on-line and off-line operation, programmed backup, and sophisticated groupware.
  • Microsoft Exchange 2003 Server offers powerful collaboration features that allow teams to increase efficiency by sharing scheduling, address groups, messages, and files.
  • The versatility of MS Exchange 2003 Server makes it possible to install non-Microsoft security enhancements or support wireless devices such as the BlackBerry smartphone.
  • Exchange 2003 Server supports advanced administration and monitoring utilities so you can make sure your email system is running efficiently.
  • Microsoft Exchange 2003 Server allows full on-line backup without disrupting performance, enabling round-the-clock operation by avoiding routine downtime.

How Progent Can Assist You to Migrate Your POP3 E-Mail Users to Microsoft Exchange Server 2003
Progent's background and proven best practices can enable you to manage a quick, non-disruptive move of your POP3 users to Exchange 2003 Server. Progent pays attention to vital issues that include managing domain names so that both local and mobile users make a smooth upgrade from the restrictions of POP3 messaging. Progent can assist you with integrating a local Exchange Server 2003 system or help you to locate and administer your Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 in an external datacenter. Progent's business continuity consultants can help your company to develop and implement a complete workplace recovery strategy that incorporates Microsoft System Center Data Protection Manager (DPM) consulting for ongoing remote backup and fast data recovery.

How Progent Can Help You to Upgrade to MS Exchange Server 2013 or Exchange 2016 from Exchange 2003
Progent's Exchange experts can help you to move to MS Exchange 2013 Server or migrate to Microsoft Exchange Server 2016 from Exchange 2003 Server at minimal expense or interruption of business. Progent can help you to improve Microsoft Exchange security, performance, reliability, and availability and streamline management. Progent's certified system security consultants can review and improve your security strategy and Progent's Cisco-qualified network consultants can upgrade your network infrastructure to improve network efficiency and reduce operating cost.

Microsoft Office 365 Exchange Online Integration with On-premises Exchange
Office 365 Integration with On-premises ExchangeMicrosoft supports seamless hybrid ecosystems that integrate Office 365 Exchange Online and on-premises installations of Exchange. This permits you to have some Exchange mailboxes located at your on-premises datacenter and other mailboxes resident on Office 365. Progent's certified Exchange consultants can help you with any facet of designing, integrating and debugging your hybrid Exchange network. Progent's Exchange specialists can deliver as-needed support to help you through challenging technical issues and also offer extensive project management outsourcing or co-sourcing to make sure your hybrid Office 365 initiative is carried out on schedule and on budget. To learn more about Progent's online consulting services for integrating Office 365 and on-premises Exchange systems, refer to Office 365 integration with on-premises Exchange.

Hosting for Exchange
Progent also offers Microsoft Exchange Hosting and Management Services centered around on a world-class facility for Exchange and featuring high-speed Internet connectivity, dedicated firewall security, patch and revision implementation, Help Desk services, spam filtering, regular backup, continual monitoring of security and performance, and full Exchange administration services. While you are moving from an earlier version of Exchange is an ideal time to consider moving to a hosted environment for Exchange 2016 Server or MS Exchange Server 2013 in order to economize on expenses related to computer hardware, fail-safe infrastructure, and email administration.

Find out more about Progent's IT Outsourcing services.

To contact Progent about technical assistance for MS Exchange Server or to learn more about Progent's Microsoft Exchange hosting services, call 1-800-993-9400 or see Contact Progent.

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