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Exchange 2003 delays

I have configured Exchange 2003 on my domain controller. I have developed a program in Visual Studio.Net and it is communicating with Active Directory and Exchange Server as well. A problem occurs when I create a user in Active Directory or programmatically: it creates in nick of time, but the Exchange e-mail address and Outlook Web Access (OWA) are not created immediately. It takes 1 to 10 minutes to create a mailbox this way. How can I create a mailbox quickly?
What you are seeing here is inherent in the design of the Recipient Update Service (RUS) in Exchange 2003. Essentially, the RUS is designed to:

  • Stamp Exchange-related attributes on Active Directory objects (including the showInAddressBook attribute, which allows the object to appear in the Global Address List (GAL))

  • generate e-mail address(es) for the account

The RUS runs on a schedule that defaults to "Run Always." This translates to 15 minutes, which accounts for the lag you're seeing between creation of the AD accounts and when you can actually access the mailbox. Theoretically, you can force a RUS rebuild by taking the following steps, though this isn't recommended for a production environment:

  • Launch Exchange System Manager (ESM)

  • Navigate to the Recipients container

  • Select the Recipient Update Services node, then right-click the RUS that corresponds with your domain. (Note that there should be two RUSs here, one for Enterprise Configuration and one for Domain. It's the latter that you want to right-click.)

  • Selecting "Rebuild now" will force the RUS to immediately stamp its attributes on your new objects.

Following these procedures will ensure that the mailbox is immediately accessible.

Dig Deeper on Legacy Exchange Server versions

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