Although Microsoft’s site does a good job of outlining the objectives for the 70-662 Exchange Server exam, it is a good idea to brush up on some specific topics within the overall exam objectives. This article is designed not as a comprehensive study guide, but rather as a tool for pointing out some of the more important exam objectives.
1. Installing Exchange Server Roles
There aren’t a tremendous number of questions related to the deployment of Exchange Server roles, but given the complexity of some of the other areas that are tested on the exam, it is easy to overlook something basic like server roles. Some of the most important things that you need to know about Exchange Server roles include:
- The Edge Transport role must be placed on a dedicated server and cannot be combined with any other server role.
- The Unified Messaging Role is not supported on a virtual server.
- The Mailbox Server role should not be combined with other roles if you are planning to use Database Availability Groups.
2. PowerShell Cmdlets
Exam 70-662 is big on the use of PowerShell cmdlets. Before you take this exam, make sure that you know the basics of using PowerShell (or more correctly, the Exchange Management Shell) for Exchange Server Management. Most questions don’t require you to know the full syntax for the various commands, but you do need to know which cmdlets are used to perform various management tasks.
If you need a little bit of help brushing up on your knowledge of the Exchange Management Shell commands, then remember that when you perform an action using the Exchange Management Console, the underlying Exchange Management Shell commands are displayed.
3. Retention Limits
When you take the 70–662 exam, you can expect to see several different questions regarding retention tags and retention policies. One of the most important things you need to know are the three types of retention tags:
- Default Policy Tags used for any item in which no other retention tags are applied (either explicitly or as an inheritance).
- Retention Policy Tags applied to default folders such as the Inbox and the Sent Items folder.
- Personal Tags Users can use personal tags to apply retention settings to custom folders.
You also need to keep in mind that retention policies are nothing more than a group of retention tags that are applied to a single mailbox.
4. Role Based Access Control
Exam 70–662 typically contains several questions related to Role Based Access Control. While it is impossible for me to thoroughly cover the topic of Role Based Access Control within an article like this, I will mention that you need to be familiar with the concept of roles groups. Role groups contain four specific components:
- Management Role Groupa universal security group that is used when adding and removing group members.
- Management Roledefines the tasks that can be performed by group members. The role itself is actually container which contains individual role entries.
- Management Role Assignmenta logical structure that links a management role to a management role group.
- Management Role Scopecontrols what objects the role group is allowed to manage. For example, a management role group can be confined to a specific server or OU.
5. Database Availability Groups
Database Availability Groups are new to Exchange Server 2010, so you can expect to see quite a few questions related to them. Database Availability Groups provide a form of failover clustering to mailbox servers, but without the administrator having to manually configure the Windows Failover Clustering Service. A few of the more important key points that you will need to know about Database Availability Groups include:
- A Database Availability Group can contain up to 16 mailbox servers.
- Each Database Availability Group requires a dedicated name and IP address.
- Mailbox servers can only belong to a single Database Availability Group.
- If a file share witness is required, it should be placed on the Hub Transport Server.
- Database Availability Group members can only host the Mailbox Server role.
- You are free to pick and choose which Database Availability Group members will host replicas of each mailbox database.
- Public folder databases cannot be replicated within a Database Availability Group.
6. General Database Maintenance
Although much of the exam focuses on Database Availability Groups, you will also need to know how to perform some basic database maintenance tasks such as creating a database, creating a mailbox within a database, and deleting a database. Make sure that you know how to perform such actions both through the Exchange Management Console and through the Exchange Management Shell.
One more thing that I want to quickly mention is that although storage groups were a key component in Exchange Server 2007, they do not exist in Exchange Server 2010. As such, there is no such thing as an Exchange 2010 Recovery Storage Group. If you want to perform a restoration, you would instead use a Recovery Database.
7. Federated Sharing
Microsoft lists federated sharing as one of the objectives for the Exchange Server 2010 exam. In the past there has not been a great deal of emphasis on this particular topic. However, now that Microsoft Office 365 is nearing its final release, I think that the topic will become much more relevant, and you will probably start to see more questions related to federated sharing on the exam.
Federated sharing involves the use of the Microsoft Federation Gateway. The Microsoft Federation Gateway is a cloud based component with which your Exchange Server Organization establishes a federated trust. Once this trust is established an application identifier is generated. This application identifier (which is sometimes referred to as an AppID) is used to uniquely identify your organization when establishing a federated trust with another organization.
8. Upgrade Strategies
Exam 70–662 places a major emphasis on upgrading from legacy versions of Exchange Server. Some of the more important things that you need to know about an upgrade include:
- You cannot perform an in place upgrade. You can only migrate your existing organization to Exchange Server 2010.
- Migrations (and coexistence) are supported for Exchange Server 2003 and Exchange Server 2007. Coexistence with Exchange Server 5.5 and Exchange Server 2000 are not supported.
- When you are performing a migration, the order in which you bring Exchange 2010 servers online is important. The first Exchange Server 2010 server role that you should deploy is the Client Access Server role. The second role that you should deploy is the Hub Transport Server role.
9. Edge Transport Servers
You can also expect see quite a few questions related to the Edge Transport Server role. Some of the more important things that you need to be aware of include:
- The Edge Transport Server role is optional, but highly recommended. If you choose not to use an Edge Transport Server then Exchange Server 2010 must be configured so that new mail is delivered directly from the Internet to the Hub Transport Server.
- Because the Edge Transport Server sits at the network perimeter, Microsoft has designed the role to reside on a standalone server. The server that you use cannot be a member of an Active Directory domain.
- Likewise, Edge Transport Servers cannot host any other Exchange Server roles.
- Antispam and antivirus filtering is typically performed on the Edge Transport Server. Microsoft provides antispam filters, which can be enabled on the Edge Transport Server or on the Hub Transport Server. Microsoft recommends using ForeFront for antivirus filtering, but ForeFront licenses are not included with Exchange Server.
Edge Transport Servers store a minimal amount of directory information in an AD LDS partition. This information is synchronized from the Active Directory through the use of an Edge Synchronization.
10. Messaging Compliance Features
Finally, regulatory compliance is a big topic on the 70-662 exam. Exchange Server 2010 includes several different compliance features that you need to be familiar with. Some of these features include:
- Journalingused to create and store copies of messages sent to and from users.
- Multi Mailbox SearchIt is possible for a delegated user to perform E-discovery across multiple mailboxes using advanced query syntax commands.
- Transport Rulescan perform actions on messages as they pass through the transport pipeline. For example, transport rules can be used to append a disclaimer to messages.
- Message Classificationscan be applied to messages as a way of ensuring that those messages are handled in the proper way.
- Retention Policiesensure that messages are retained for the required length of time, and are disposed of when the retention period expires.