Wednesday, October 11

Hardware - Processor, Memory for Exchange 2007

Lots of our customer is asking on, what hardware we should purchase to fit in Exchange server 2007? Actually, there are many factors to consider when selecting hardware. The most critical factors to consider are choice of processor, amount of memory, and selecting of storage. We will only cover Processor and Memory in this article.

The difference between previous versions of Exchange Server and Exchange 2007 is the move from a 32-bit platform to a 64-bit platform. For production, only the 64-bit version of Exchange 2007 running on the x64-based version of Microsoft Windows Server 2003. The change from a 32-bit platform to a 64-bit platform requires a new approach to choosing server hardware for Exchange 2007, especially with respect to processor and memory.

Selecting the Appropriate Processor
For production environments, you must choose a processor that will work with the x64-based version of Windows Server 2003. The following server processors support the x64-based versions of Windows Server 2003, thereby supporting Exchange 2007:
AMD, Intel Xeon with EM64 technology. You have to also know that the Intel Itanium (IA64) processor will not work with Windows Server 2003 x64-based versions; therefore, it cannot work with Exchange 2007. Exchange 2007 is designed to run only on x64-capable processors such as those listed above, and it will not run on Itanium-based systems.

Dual-core processor is so famous now, this will definately benefit Exchange Server 2007. The performance benefit for Exchange Server from dual-core technology depends upon the specific processor used. The findings from Exchange Server 2003 dual-core testing have been summarized in Microsoft Knowledge Base article 827281, please visit this article!

Memory
Exchange 2007, with 64 bit hardware enables much better memory utilization than previous versions of Exchange Server. For example, because of the virtual address space limitations of a 32-bit platform, Exchange Server 2003 is limited to using 4 GB or less of physical memory. Exchange 2007 can use upwards of 16 GB of memory and beyond.

NOTE: Altlhough this is the hardware suggestion for Exchange 2007, you should have different sizing on the Exchange 2007 role in specific.