New book: Windows Essential Business Server 2008 Administrator’s Companion


New book: Windows Essential Business Server 2008 Administrator’s Companion

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Are you interested in EBS? Here’s the book you’ve been waiting for: Windows Essential Business Server 2008 Administrator’s Companion by JC Mackin and Charlie Russel (ISBN: 978-0-7356-25259).

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The authors and surrounding team have put great effort into providing an in-depth Administrator’s Companion that will answer your questions about this enterprise-class server solution that is designed for the needs of the midsize business. JC Mackin and Charlie Russel bring a wealth of experience and knowledge to this topic and the Microsoft MVPs and the EBS product team were generous with their support. Here’s a glimpse at the Table of Contents and a sample of a sidebar. Enjoy!

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Under The Hood Using Windows PowerShell for Exchange Management

The Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 Management Console is built entirely on Windows PowerShell. Everything that can be done in the console can also be done from the Exchange Management Shell (the name for the Microsoft Exchange PowerShell window.) While most tasks are easily accomplished from the Exchange Management Console, and are certainly more discoverable from there, doing repetitive tasks from any graphical console can be a pain, and is also far more prone to errors. Using the Windows PowerShell command line that the Exchange Management Shell provides gives you the ability to automate routine tasks or apply changes uniformly across multiple mail-enabled objects.

Microsoft Exchange makes it easy to learn the basic Exchange-related commands and options even if you’re a Windows PowerShell neophyte. When you use one of the Exchange Management Console wizards, you have an option on the last page to copy the command (and some related stuff you don’t actually care about) to the clipboard by pressing Ctrl+C. You can then paste this into a file and edit it with the ASCII editor of your choice. What’s pasted in is the actual command that was shown on the Completion page of the wizard—giving you a great starting point for building your own scripts to perform similar tasks. A useful resource is the Exchange Team Blog at http://msexchangeteam.com/.

Another good resource is Windows PowerShell itself. Windows PowerShell is an extremely self-discoverable language. You can start by getting a list of all the Exchange-specific Windows PowerShell commands:

Get-Excommand > ExchangeCommands.txt

This will create a file that has a list of all the Exchange-specific Windows PowerShell commands. If you see a command that looks like it might do what you want, say creating a new distribution list, get some help with that command:

Help New-DistributionGroup

You can get additional help, including examples of using the command, by adding the –detailed switch to the Help command:

Help New-DistributionGroup –detailed

To get some more general help with Windows PowerShell, try the following:

Help about*

This will give you a list of available general Help topics and is a great way to start your Windows PowerShell Discovery Tour. 

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