Managing the HTTP Virtual Server


Topic Last Modified: 2005-05-18

Outlook Web Access, Outlook Mobile Access, and Exchange ActiveSync rely on the HTTP protocol to access Exchange information. These clients also use the WebDAV protocol, a set of rules that enable computers to exchange information and execute instructions through the Exchange front-end server, as well as retrieve and handle information in the Exchange store. By supporting both HTTP and WebDAV, Exchange 2003 can provide more data access functionality to users. For example, users of Outlook Web Access can do calendar request operations and can store Microsoft Office files, such as Microsoft Office Word documents, in the Exchange store.

Exchange provides support for both HTTP and WebDAV through the HTTP virtual server. When you install Exchange, Exchange automatically installs and configures an HTTP virtual server. You administer this default server only from IIS.

However, to provide for several collaboration scenarios and to supplement the access to folders that is provided by the default Web site in IIS, you can create new HTTP virtual servers in Exchange System Manager. As with any virtual server, each new HTTP virtual server that you create requires a unique combination of IP address, TCP port, SSL port, and host name. Furthermore, for each virtual server that you create, you must define one virtual directory as the root directory of the server for publishing content.

The folder contents displayed by the HTTP virtual server are converted to Web pages and sent to a user's browser by IIS.

For detailed steps about how to create a new HTTP virtual server, see How to Create a New HTTP Virtual Server.