Export (0) Print
Expand All

Job Aid - Operations Check Lists

Archived content. No warranty is made as to technical accuracy. Content may contain URLs that were valid when originally published, but now link to sites or pages that no longer exist.
Updated : October 11, 2001


Patterns and practices

Microsoft® Exchange 2000 Server

This job aid is part of the Exchange 2000 Server Operations Guide.

This job aid will help you to identify which processes are essential for successful Microsoft® Exchange 2000 Server operations.

On This Page

Operations Procedures

Operations Procedures

Microsoft® Exchange 2000 Server has multiple components that need to be monitored on a continual basis. It also relies on a network operating system and physical network services. For Exchange Server to operate reliably, you need to define operations procedures for each of these services and components. The following checklists will help you ensure that you do not unintentionally omit crucial parts of your operations procedures.

This job aid includes checklists for the following:

  • General Operations

  • Capacity and Availability Management

  • Change and Configuration Management

  • Enterprise Monitoring

  • Protection

  • Support

These checklists present you with a series of questions to consider. Although you may want to answer yes to every question, budget constraints may prevent you from doing so. The important thing is that you consider all the questions. The checklists also refer you to the area in the Operations Guide where you can find more information.

General Operations

Description

Chapter

Completed

Early involvement in Exchange 2000 Server planning and deployment

Will your operations team be ready to take over responsibility for infrastructure and processes when the time comes?
Are you regularly and effectively communicating planning and deployment decisions to the operations team?

1

 

e2koja01

Feedback from operations

Do you have a mechanism for providing feedback from the operations team to the planning and deployment team?

1

 

e2koja01

SLA definitions

Is the operations team involved in defining service level agreements (SLAs)?
Have the SLAs been tested for feasibility?
Has a mechanism for monitoring against SLAs been defined?

1

 

e2koja01

Operations documentation

Have you agreed which operations documents should be produced?
Have you established a mechanism for testing these documents for accuracy and feasibility?

1

 

e2koja01

Capacity and Availability Management

Description

Chapter

Completed

Hardware reliability

Are all system components on the Microsoft hardware compatibility list?

2

 

e2koja01

Air conditioning/sprinkler systems

Have you checked for overloaded circuits?
Have you ensured that the new servers will not lead to overloading?
Is the equipment clean and efficient?
Do you monitor for failure of units?
Have you designated on-call personnel for dealing with failure?

2

 

e2koja01

Secure access

Have you defined who can access data centers?
Do your data centers have adequate physical security?
Do you carry out security checks on staff who will be allowed access to the datacenters?

2

 

e2koja01

Power failure

Have you ensured that you have no exposed power switches?
Do you have good UPSs in place?
Do you have an alternate source of power?
Have you designated on-call personnel for dealing with failure?

2

 

e2koja01

Single points of failure

Have you minimized all single points of failure?

2

 

e2koja01

Service Hours

Are your service hours defined?
Are users notified well in advance of planned downtime?
Are users reminded that planned downtime is about to occur?

2

 

e2koja01

Service availability

Do you define levels of availability on a service-by-service basis?
Do you monitor the levels of availability of each service?

2

 

e2koja01

Capacity and availability

Do you size your Exchange servers so that they meet your SLAs on availability?

2

 

e2koja01

Minimizing recovery time

Do you have hardware available to do a restore?
Do you have fast access to support resources?
Do you have trained staff on call to deal with system failure?

2

 

e2koja01

Improving performance

Have you tuned Exchange to the needs of your environment?

2

 

e2koja01

Change and Configuration Management

Description

Chapter

Completed

Change control process

Do you have a workflow defined for dealing with all forms of change (from major to standard)?
Do you have a separate workflow for dealing with urgent change?

3

 

e2koja01

Change and configuration management software

Do you have change management software in place?
Do you have a configuration management database in place?
Have you defined how the software should be used?

3

 

e2koja01

Configuration items

Have you defined which CIs should be recorded?
Have you defined the relationship between the Cis?

 

 

Consistency

Have you trained your staff in change and configuration management procedures?
Have you ensured that all users are following change and configuration management procedures?

3

 

e2koja01

Documentation

Does your change management process ensure that all change is documented fully?

3

 

e2koja01

Verification

Do you regularly check that your change management process is being followed?
Do you regularly check your configuration management database for inconsistencies?

3

 

e2koja01

Enterprise Monitoring

Description

Chapter

Completed

Monitoring procedures

Have you determined how your data will be collected and archived?
Do you have a centralized monitoring strategy?
Do you have computers in place for performing monitoring?

4

 

e2koja01

What to monitor

Have you determined key objects and counters to monitor?
Are you monitoring event logs?
Are you monitoring Exchange services?
Are you monitoring network availability?
Are you monitoring availability at the client?

4

 

e2koja01

Baselines

Have you established a baseline for the Microsoft Windows® 2000 operating system and Exchange 2000 Server counters?

4

 

e2koja01

Thresholds

Have you defined thresholds for key objects and counters?
Have you defined what should happen if these thresholds are exceeded?

4

 

e2koja01

Alerts

Do you have an effective alert mechanism in place? (one that does not rely on e-mail)

4

 

e2koja01

Staffing

Do you have staff on call to deal with alerts when they arise?

4

 

e2koja01

Protection

Description

Chapter

Completed

Mailbox Security

Do you monitor to see if rights on mailboxes change?

5

 

e2koja01

Key Management Servers

Have you considered deploying Key Management Server?
If deployed, are Key Management Servers physically secure?
Is the Key Management Server password physically secure?

5

 

e2koja01

Server security

Are your servers running Exchange and domain controllers physically secure?
Are your Active Directory™ service group memberships secure?
Do you monitor for changes to key Active Directory groups?
Do you ensure that only key personnel can change Active Directory group memberships?

5

 

e2koja01

Firewall

Do you ensure high availability of your firewalls?
Do you monitor to ensure that only the correct traffic is let through the firewall?
Do you monitor against hacker intrusion?
Do you have a defined procedure for dealing with hacker attacks?
Do you have a mechanism for notifying those affected by hacker attack?

5

 

e2koja01

Virus protection

Do you check that all servers and clients always have the latest updates from the anti-virus software vendor?
Have you defined which attachments should be blocked?
Have you installed the security patch for Microsoft Outlook® messaging and collaboration client?
Do you receive and act on security bulletins from Microsoft?
Do you have a mechanism for excluding new viruses even if an update is unavailable?
Have you defined how to deal with virus infection if it does occur?
Do you have a procedure for notifying users of virus attack?

5

 

e2koja01

Security audit

Have you performed a full security audit?

5

 

e2koja01

Backup

Do you perform regular backups?
Do you back up to disk as well as tape?
Do you back up Active Directory system state regularly?
Do you store your backup tapes in a secure offsite location?
Do you change backup media regularly?

5

 

e2koja01

Recovery

Do you set mailbox and message retention times on all your servers?
Do you have hot spare servers?
Is your staff skilled in same server and alternate server recovery?
Do you perform regular disaster recovery drills, covering multiple scenarios?
Do you have staff on call at all times for potential server recovery?
Do you have up-to-date contact details of all employees and vendors who may be required in a disaster recovery scenario?
Do you have a plan to recover from a physical disaster, such as a fire or flood?

5

 

e2koja01

Support

Description

Chapter

Completed

Reducing Service desk calls

Do you have a Web site with help information for users?
Do you have a mechanism for notifying users of problems?
Do you tightly control which client software and hardware is supported?
Do you keep users informed on the progress of their Service Desk requests?

6

 

e2koja01

Prioritizing problems

Do you prioritize problems based on the nature of the problem and the number of users affected?

6

 

e2koja01

Service desk support

Is your service desk staff trained in the use of Windows 2000 and Exchange 2000?
Do you have a comprehensive internal knowledge base that is fully up to date?
Do you use the Microsoft Knowledge Base?
Do you check regularly for the latest Knowledge Base article updates on http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=FH;EN-US;KBHOWTO&sd=GN&ln=EN-US?fr=0&SD=GN&LN=EN-US

6

 

e2koja01

Problem management

Do you have an escalation path for troubleshooting?
Do you have diagrams available that define your environment?
Do you have dependency charts for all the interrelated technologies?
Do you have a support agreement for higher levels of support?

6

 

e2koja01

Getting help

Do you have up-to-date contact details for all employees and vendors who may be required in a troubleshooting scenario?

 

 


Patterns and practices

Was this page helpful?
(1500 characters remaining)
Thank you for your feedback
Show:
© 2014 Microsoft