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The mission of one of the top public universities in the United States is to provide the best possible educational experience for its students through excellence in teaching, research and creative activity, and service to the state and society. As a part of that mission, the school’s IT team strives to offer students, faculty, and staff a secure and reliable communication solution that enhances the everyday activities that comprise university life. To improve e-mail capabilities for faculty and students, the university deployed a pilot of Microsoft® Exchange Server 2010. With this upgrade, the university will be able to benefit from increased performance and redundancy, reduced storage and backup costs, reduced compliance costs, and the ability to grow the communications network as the university population demands it.
Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 Customer Solution Case Study University Reduces Costs and Improves User Experience with Messaging Solution Overview “By using the compliance features in Microsoft Country or Region: United States Industry: Education Exchange Server 2010, we can save about $400,000 in hardware and software costs. That’s a big savings.” Customer Profile With more than 30,000 students, this Joseph Nguyen, Systems Architect university is one of the leading public universities in the United States. The mission of one of the top public universities in the United Business Situation The university wanted a more flexible, States is to provide the best possible educational experience for extensible communication solution to its students through excellence in teaching, research and meet the demands of a diverse population. creative activity, and service to the state and society. As a part of that mission, the school’s IT team strives to offer students, Solution The university decided to deploy a faculty, and staff a secure and reliable communication solution pilot of Microsoft® Exchange Server that enhances the everyday activities that comprise university 2010 to create a more secure, reliable messaging environment. life. To improve e-mail capabilities for faculty and students, the university deployed a pilot of Microsoft® Exchange Server 2010. Benefits Improves availability With this upgrade, the university will be able to benefit from Improves messaging performance increased performance and redundancy, reduced storage and Reduces costs Enables future growth backup costs, reduced compliance costs, and the ability to grow the communications network as the university population demands it. “With Windows Mobile Situation Although the current solution works With an annual operating budget of smoothly, the IT team continues to look 6.5, Conversation View is U.S.$1.48 billion, the university enables for ways to improve performance and its IT department to provide the latest reduce the costs of maintaining an ever- as good as it is in Office technology—whether in widely available expanding environment. Outlook and Outlook wireless networks or in physical hardware—to students, leading PC Web App. Users can Magazine to rank it as one of America’s Solution Top Wired Colleges for 2008. As part of the Microsoft Rapid definitely look through Development Program, the university e-mail much faster.” The university struggles with frequent decided to deploy a pilot of Microsoft power outages and the possibility that Exchange Server 2010 after learning Aaron Bighorse, Business Architect severe weather could take one or more about the high-availability, storage, and of its servers offline, so reliable disaster performance improvements in this latest recovery is critical. With its commitment offering. A particular draw was Database to maintaining highly available services, Availability Groups, a high-availability the IT team manages a system that solution that combines on-site data provides both geographic and hardware replication and off-site data replication redundancy. With its current solution into a single framework, which would based on Microsoft® Exchange Server enable the team to reduce the number of 2007 e-mail messaging and collaboration active mailbox servers from eight down software, the team uses cluster to four. “Our existing primary network continuous replication (CCR) for its high- operations center is an old building, and availability solution, with four CCR we have power and heating issues. We clusters providing network redundancy have many instances where we have to at two data centers that are several miles shut down, and with our current CCR apart around the main campus. solution, passive nodes come online in another building to maintain mail Beyond maintaining service availability, service. Database Availability Groups the university’s IT team has put a provide the same thing, except they’re solution in place that provides students, more flexible,” explains Joseph Nguyen, faculty, and staff unlimited mailboxes. Systems Architect. Using Database With the current solution, the university Availability Groups, the IT team will faced increasing storage costs for configure four mailbox servers in the maintaining network and backup data, as primary site, along with two mailbox well as diminishing performance. servers for disaster recovery at an Because it provides unlimited storage for additional location, providing further users, the IT team continually had to redundancy. monitor the size of mailbox databases and move users’ mailboxes to keep them The university will also be able to reduce sized similarly. The team frequently had the amount of storage required because to move mailboxes in the middle of the replicated database copies reduce the night to balance performance and avoid need for data redundancy at the disk taking users offline during the day, when level. “Our plan is to keep three database the campus is most active. copies—two that are up-to-date and one that lags by about a week,” explains Aaron Bighorse, Business Architect. “We “Because we can move will load balance the database copies, so offer the features it required at a much no one server will get the full load from a lower cost. mailboxes or perform server that is down.” Another way that the university will reduce overall storage By the beginning of the 2009 fall routine maintenance is by applying retention policies. The IT semester, the university deployed during business hours, team can set university-wide retention Exchange Server 2010 to 4,000 students policies, and users can also manually and faculty. By the end of 2009, the we can reserve nights or select items to archive, thereby reducing system should be fully migrated and the amount of data that needs to be deployed to all users on campus. The IT weekends for larger stored in the database. team sees significant advantages of the network deployments new system for returning and new While less data means that the IT team students, such as Microsoft Outlook® that might be disruptive. will not be required to move mailboxes Web App, which provides Web-based as frequently, the Online Move Mailbox access to Exchange Server mailboxes. Being able to schedule feature in Exchange Server 2010 will and complete moves at enable the team to plan and carry out Several other client features also moves on a scheduled basis, even during motivated this decision, including specific times helps a the day. “Because we can move MailTips and Conversation View. With mailboxes or perform routine MailTips, workers can see—before they great deal.” maintenance during business hours, we click the send button—whether a Aaron Bighorse, Business Architect can reserve nights or weekends for larger message recipient is out of the office or network deployments that might be an attachment is too large to send. With disruptive,” adds Bighorse. “Being able to Conversation View, employees accessing schedule and complete moves at specific Microsoft Outlook 2010 messaging and times helps a great deal.” collaboration client on their computer, the Web, or from their Windows® The university plans to take advantage of phones can view messages organized the support for Serial Advanced into conversations or threads to make it Technology Attachment (SATA) hard disk easier to follow a topic. Messages will drives in Exchange Server 2010. show up in the conversation even if they Exchange Server 2010 delivers a 70 have been filed in different folders. Entire percent reduction in disk input/output conversations can be deleted or ignored, (I/O) from Exchange Server 2007, meaning future messages for that lowering the bar for the minimum disk conversation will no longer show up in performance required to run Exchange the inbox. Server. “Expanded browser support for Outlook Another area of potential cost savings for Web App is a huge deal for Macintosh the university is in compliance features, and Linux users who are on browsers specifically legal discovery. Using other than Windows Internet Explorer®. Exchange Server 2010, the security team Now they will all have the option of can preserve copies of users’ deleted and using Outlook Web App as their main edited mailbox items by placing a legal client,” says Nguyen. Because the hold on individual mailboxes or across university allows students and faculty to larger groups. The IT team investigated access e-mail through any technology another vendor’s solution, until it they choose, it is also providing support realized that Exchange Server 2010 could for people who use Windows Mobile® “We get better built-in software. “With Windows Mobile 6.5, Reduces Storage and Compliance Conversation View is as good as it is in Costs site redundancy with Office Outlook and Outlook Web App,” The migration of data from a storage says Bighorse. “Users can definitely look area network (SAN) to a direct-attached Exchange Server 2010, through e-mail much faster.” storage (DAS) solution using SATA disks without having to install will help the university reduce storage As it continues to look for ways to costs by almost $150,000. The university and configure additional improve communication for students, also plans to implement the discovery faculty, and staff alike, the university’s IT features that are a part of Exchange hardware, which saves us team has started investigating a unified Server 2010 instead of implementing a money in the long run.” communications solution from Microsoft, third-party solution, which will save and it looks forward to deploying the hardware and software costs. “By using Joseph Nguyen, Systems Architect pilot for Microsoft Outlook 2010 the compliance features in Microsoft messaging and collaboration client as Exchange Server 2010, we can save soon as it is available. about $400,000 in hardware and software costs. That’s a big savings,” says Nguyen. Benefits By migrating to Exchange Server 2010 Enables Future Growth from Exchange Server 2007, the By deploying Exchange Server 2010, the university will improve system university has laid the groundwork for a performance and ensure availability for more robust communications solution users across the campus, while reducing for its users. In addition, Outlook 2010 operating costs for storage and will unlock many key features in compliance. Most importantly, it Exchange Server 2010, including provides a cornerstone for solutions such enhancements for Conversation View, as unified messaging and Outlook 2010, MailTips, and other user productivity both of which unlock key features in tools that offer students the latest Exchange Server 2010 that enable technology before they enter the increased productivity and efficiency. workforce. “Outlook 2010 has some nice features that make Exchange Server 2010 Improves Performance and shine,” says Nguyen. Redundancy Using Database Availability Groups, the With Microsoft Exchange Server 2010, university will provide improved the university can continue to provide availability for its 40,000 users, without the services that made it a “top-wired” the additional cost of new hardware. The university in 2008. university will also take advantage of Database Availability Groups to add an additional disaster recovery site into its architecture. “We get better built-in site redundancy with Exchange Server 2010, without having to install and configure additional hardware, which saves us money in the long run,” says Nguyen. For More Information Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 For more information about Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 can help you products and services, call the achieve better business outcomes while Microsoft Sales Information Center at controlling the costs of deployment, (800) 426-9400. In Canada, call the administration, and compliance. Microsoft Canada Information Centre Exchange Server delivers the widest at (877) 568-2495. Customers in the range of deployment options, integrated United States and Canada who are information leakage protection, and deaf or hard-of-hearing can reach advanced compliance capabilities, which Microsoft text telephone (TTY/TDD) combine to form the best messaging and services at (800) 892-5234. Outside the collaboration solution available. 50 United States and Canada, please contact your local Microsoft subsidiary. For more information about Microsoft To access information using the World Exchange Server 2010, go to: Wide Web, go to: www.microsoft.com/exchange www.microsoft.com For more information about Microsoft Unified Communications, go to: www.microsoft.com/uc Software and Services Microsoft Server Product Portfolio − Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 This case study is for informational purposes only. MICROSOFT MAKES NO WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, IN THIS SUMMARY. Document published November 2009
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