Preparing the Test Lab


Topic Last Modified: 2005-07-08

When you prepare to build a test environment for S/MIME in Exchange 2003, consider the parts that make up a fully functional S/MIME system:

  • Certification authority (CA)

  • Exchange 2003

  • E-mail clients

Although Exchange 2003 can support any CA that generates S/MIME version 3 digital certificates, for purposes of this lab, Windows Server 2003 enterprise CA will be used. In addition, although any e-mail client that can both connect to Exchange 2003 and support S/MIME version 3 can be used, for purposes of this lab, the following clients will be used:

  • Outlook 2003 using MAPI

  • Outlook Express 6 Service Pack 1 (SP1) using POP3 or IMAP4

  • Internet Explorer 6 SP1 using Microsoft Office Outlook Web Access via HTTP

When you deploy these technologies in a lab, your S/MIME system can be used for testing S/MIME in Exchange 2003 using all supported client protocols.

As you plan your lab's needs, you need to allocate at least one dedicated computer for each part of the S/MIME system. Although you can add more computers to your test lab, three computers is the recommended minimum to ensure that your lab closely mirrors a fully deployed S/MIME system.

Outlook and Exchange are not supported when running on the same system.

The following sections describe the steps needed to install and configure the required software for the computers in your lab. These sections should be followed sequentially. Note that each section presumes that you have completed a default installation of the operating system and base application required for each lab computer.

The following table lists the computers used in this section, along with their roles, operating systems, and installed applications.

Computers used

Computer name Roles Operating systems Installed applications


Domain controller and enterprise CA

Windows Server 2003 Enterprise Edition

Certificate Services


Mailbox server and Outlook Web Access server

Windows Server 2003 Standard Edition

Exchange Server 2003


Client workstation

Windows XP Professional SP1

Internet Explorer 6 SP1, Outlook Express 6 SP1, Outlook 2003

When building computers for your lab, make sure that your test computers have the latest security patches applied to them. Use the Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer (MBSA) to determine what security patches your systems need. For more information about MBSA, see Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer (
Also, make sure lab systems are located on a separate network from your production computers. When building your lab, consult with your organization's security policy if you plan to connect your lab computers to your production network.

When you set up your lab computers, install and configure your systems in the following order:

  • Windows Server 2003 enterprise certification authority

  • Exchange Server 2003

  • E-mail clients

Set up of your lab computers is detailed later in this section. When setup is complete, you will be able to use your lab computers to test S/MIME using all of the clients configured here.