Email Attachments - Keeping Exchange Clean

Hey Gang,
Let's say I send out a 5 MB attachment to 10 people in my company. With regard to the exchange database size, is that attachment going to take up 5 MB or 50 MB (5 x 10) of space on my exchange server?

The reason for my question is I have found that many of my users are sending out rather large attachments internally to lots of people, rather then just linking to document on the network or using public folders (which I try to preach to them to always do). I'm trying to keep things relatively simple for my users.

What do you guys do to try and minimize your exchange database? (I don't know much about Share Point, but I have a feeling this is going to get mentioned)

Thanks in advance.
WIP: CCENT/CCNA (.....probably)


  • elaverick1981elaverick1981 Member Posts: 161
    Here you go:
    You Had Me At EHLO... : Single Instance Storage in Exchange 2007

    My understanding of this is that messages that declare all recipients sent either internally or externally with store only one copy of an attachment (or from 2003 and older, attachment or message body)

    Have you considered reducing the permitted size of attachments to 1MB or less? That would force a change of attitude...
  • ClaymooreClaymoore Member Posts: 1,637
    First, don't forget that Exchange uses single instance storage per message store. If that 5 mb attachment goes to 10 or even 100 people in the same message store, it only takes up 5mb in the database. If they send it to users in different message stores, then there would be one copy in each store.

    Second, why are the sending the attachments? If it is just a notification that a report is complete and available, then embedding a link to the file on the server is the way to go like you said. If it is for any type of workflow then SharePoint would be preferable because it actually has a workflow function that can be customized rather than just a 'store-and-forward' function like email.
  • NetAdmin2436NetAdmin2436 Member Posts: 1,076

    That's what I thought, but couldn't remember. Yeah, this is for a Engineering Change Request process here. Basically I think I'll just have to have a chat with the parties involved to minimize attachments.

    Thanks guys!
    WIP: CCENT/CCNA (.....probably)
  • Paul BozPaul Boz Member Posts: 2,620 ■■■■■■■■□□
    Does your organization have an email usage policy? I'm sure they do. If they don't, write one. If you have one, include a section in your acceptable use portion about acceptable usage of attachments. Also, you could set a limit to attachment size by policy and require shared drive linking beyond that size.

    If you want to make your users comply make it company policy. Non-compliance can affect the employees bottom line (keeping their job) and will usually make it stick a lot more.
    CCNA Security | GSEC |GCFW | GCIH | GCIA
    [email protected]
  • cbigbrickcbigbrick Member Posts: 284
    This is what SharePoint was created for.
    And in conclusion your point was.....???

    Don't get so's just ones and zeros.
  • NetAdmin2436NetAdmin2436 Member Posts: 1,076
    To tell you the truth we don't have an specific email usage policy, just a general computer/internet policy. That's a good idea though, I'll work on one in the near future. I did have attachment limits set, but thanks for reminding me. I checked the limits and lowered them quite a bit from 30 MB to 20 MB. I think years ago when I first started at my company we had a need to email videos/CAD drawings. I have since set up a FTP site for large attachments for external customers. Due to company needs, I know I would not be able to limit them to 1 MB.

    I work for a small family owned business (40 employees or so), so there's a bit of family BS I have to put up with regards to some people email requirements. An owner, 2 sons and nephew..... In general though, my exchange database is actually very small (30 GB). I always like to try and look ahead and ask myself, "what if I had 400 users?". Then this could really be a problem then. Sounds like Share Point is something worth looking into for down the road.
    WIP: CCENT/CCNA (.....probably)
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