Top 13 Microsoft Exchange Interview Questions & Answers

1) Mention what are the new features in MS Exchange 2013?

  • Integration with Lync and SharePoint: With site mailboxes and in-place eDiscovery, it offers a greater integration with Microsoft Sharepoint and Lync
  • Provide a resilient solution: It built upon the exchange server 2010 and redesigned for simplicity of scale, feature isolation and hardware utilization
  • Supports a multigenerational workforce: From multiple sources users can merge contacts as well as smart search allows to search people in the network
  • Provide an engaging experience: MS web app focused on a streamlined user interface that supports the use of touch, enhancing the use of mobile devices
  • Meet the latest demand: With improved search and indexing, you can search across Lynch 2013, Exchange 2013, SharePoint 2013, etc.
  • DAG system: A new evolution of exchange 2010 DAG

2) Mention what is recommended when you are using an exchange account for your work, when you are offline?

It is suggested that you use Cached Exchange Mode when you are using an exchange account for your work, as it eliminates all the reason to work offline. With Cache Exchange Mode, you can keep continuing working even if you are disconnected with the network.  Cache Exchange Mode uses a folder file (.ost) and manages a synchronized copy of the items in all folder in the mailbox, when you are offline.  As soon as you are connected to the network, it syncs your data automatically to the server without losing any data.

3) Mention what are the roles in MS exchange 2013?

In MS exchange 2013, there are two roles Client Access Server and Mailbox Server.

4) Mention what is the role of Client Access Server?

The Client Access Server gives connectivity to various services like

  • Microsoft Office Outlook
  • Outlook Web App
  • Mobile devices
  • POP & SMTP
  • Accepts mail from delivers mail to other mail hosts on the internet
  • Gives unified namespace, network security and authentication
  • Handles all client requests for Exchange
  • Routes requests to the correct mailbox server
  • Allows the use of layer 4 (TCP affinity) routing

5) Mention what is the role of Mailbox server?

Mailbox servers help in

  • e-mail storage
  • Host public folder databases
  • Host mailbox databases
  • Calculate e-mail address policies
  • Performs multi-mailbox searches
  • Provide high availability and site resiliency
  • Provide messaging records management and retention policies
  • Handle connectivity as clients don’t connect directly to the mailbox services
  • For given mailbox, it provides all core exchange functionality
  • When a database fails over, it also fails access to the mailbox

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6) Explain what are the important features of Transport Pipeline?

Transport pipeline is made up of three different services:

  • Front end transport service: It does basic message filtering based on domains, connectors, senders and recipients. It only connects with the transport service on a mailbox server and does not backlog any messages locally
  • Transport service: It runs on all mailbox servers, and it handles SMTP mail flow. It helps in message categorization and content inspection. The transport services routes messages between the Mailbox Transport service, the Transport Service and Front End Transport service.  This service does not queue messages locally
  • Mailbox Transport: This system includes receiving and sending SMTP to the transport service from mailbox using RPC (Remote Procedure Call).

7) Explain what is the role of categorizer?

Categorizer performs following functions

  • Recipient Resolution: The e-mail address of the recipient is resolved to decide whether the recipient has got a mailbox in the Exchange Organization or an external e-mail address
  • Routing Resolution: Once the information regarding the recipient is resolved, the ultimate destination for the mail is routed, and the next hop are determined
  • Content Conversion: Once the mail has reached its determined address, the SMTP is converted into readable format like HTML, rich text format or plain text

8) Explain the term DAG (Data Availability Group)?


DAG or Data Availability Group is a framework build is MS Exchange 2013.  It is a group of upto 16 mailbox server that hosts a set of databases and provides automatic database level recovery due to failure of servers of databases.

9) Mention how many types of delivery groups found in MS Exchange 2013?

In MS Exchange 2013, there are five types of delivery groups

  • Routing DAG
  • Mailbox delivery groups
  • Connector source service
  • AD site
  • Server List

10) Explain how message is delivered to the mailbox database in Exchange 2013?

In exchange 2013, after the message reaches the target mailbox server in the destination AD site, the transport service avails SMTP to carry the message to the mailbox.  After that, using RPC, Transport Service delivers the message to the local mailbox.

11) What action does Front End Transport service does?

Front end transport service does one of the following actions based on the number and type of the recipients

  • For the message with a single mailbox recipient, choose a mail box server in the target delivery group and based on the proximity of the AD site, give preference to the mail box server
  • For the message with multiple or several mailbox recipients, it uses the first 20 recipients to select a mailbox in a closest proximity or delivery group, based on the AD site proximity
  • If the message has no mailbox recipients, it choose a random mailbox server in the local AD site

12) Mention what is the function of mailbox Transport Submission service?

Mailbox Transport Submission service does one of the following actions based on the number and type of recipients.

  • For the message having only one mailbox recipient, it chooses a mailbox server in the target delivery group and give priority to the mailbox server based on the AD site proximity
  • With multiple mailbox recipients, it uses first 20 recipients to choose a Mailbox server in the closest delivery group, based on the AD site proximity
  • If there is no mailbox recipient, select a mailbox server in the local delivery group

13) How the flow of the mail is tracked in MS Exchange 2013?

To track message flow in MS Exchange 2013, Delivery Reports are used.  It is applicable for Outlook and Outlook web only.  However, Message Tracking Logs are also helpful to know the flow of the mail.


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