MsXMail Test

This test monitors the availability and performance of a Microsoft Exchange mail server from an external perspective. The test mimics the mail client activity by using the MAPI (Messaging Application Programming Interface) for sending and receiving mails. Note that Microsoft Mail account needs to be configured in the Exchange server in order to run this test. This test is disabled by default. This test is disabled by default. To enable the test, go to the enable / disable tests page using the menu sequence : Agents -> Tests -> Enable/Disable, pick the desired Component type, set Performance as the Test type, choose the test from the disabled tests list, and click on the < button to move the test to the ENABLED TESTS list. Finally, click the Update button.

Note:

  • The eG external agent that is executing the MsXMail test, should be installed on a Windows NT server/client in the same domain as the Exchange 5.5 server.
  • The administrator configuring the test should ensure that the mailbox being used in the test, exists on the Exchange 5.5 server.
  • The eGurkhaAgent service should run using the account information of the user whose mailbox has been configured for the MsXMail test.

Target of the test : A Microsoft Exchange Server 5.5

Agent deploying the test : An internal agent

Outputs of the test : One set of results for every Exchange Server 5.5 being monitored.

Configurable parameters for the test
Parameters Description

Test Period

This indicates how often should the test be executed.

Host

The IP address of the machine where the Exchange Server 5.5 is installed.

Port

The port number through which the Exchange Server 5.5 communicates. The default port number is 25.

XchgMailbox

Specify the user name or the user ID of a user mail box available on the Exchange server that is to be used for this test.

XchgSiteName

The name of the site in the Exchange server to which the mailbox belongs.

XchgOrgName

The name of the organization in the Exchange server to which the specified site belongs.

Measurements made by the test
Measurement Description Measurement Unit Interpretation

Ability to send mails

Indicates the availability of the mail server for receiving the mails sent by the test.

Percent

A value of 0 indicates that the test was not successful in sending a mail. Possible reasons for this could include the mail server being down, the network connection to the server not being available, or the  test configuration information being incorrect.

Sent messages

Indicates the number of messages sent to the mail server.

Number

A value of –1 indicates that the mail server may be down or the configuration information may be incorrect.

Time to send mails

Indicates time taken to send a mail from to the mail server.

Secs

A high value of this measure could indicate high network traffic or that the mail server is busy.        

Ability to receive mails

Indicates the availability of the exchange server for sending mails to the mail client.

Percent

The value of 0 indicates that the test was not successful in receiving a mail message from the Exchange server. Possible reasons could be incorrect configuration information. 

Received messages

Indicates the number of messages received by the mail client from the mail server.

Number

The value of 0 indicates that the test was not successful in receiving mail messages from the Exchange server. The possible reasons could be:

  • The sent messages could be in the message queue of the mail server but not routed to the mail box 
  • Configuration information may be incorrect
  • Network failure 
  • The mail service may not be running in the user account

Mail received time

Indicates the time taken by the mail client to receive a mail from the mail server.

Secs

A high value in this measure indicates that the mail server is busy or the network traffic is high.

Avg roundtrip time

The average of the round trip time (the time lapse  between transmission and reception of a message by the server) of all the messages received by the mail server during the last measurement period.

Mins

This is a key measure of quality of the mail service. An increase in this value may be indicative of a problem with the mail service. Possible reasons could include queuing failures, disk space being full, etc.

Max roundtrip time

The high water mark of the round trip time (the time lapse between transmission and reception of a message by the server) of all messages received by the mail server during the last measurement period.

Mins

If the value of the Received messages measure is 1, then the value of the Max roundtrip time measure will be the same as the Avg roundtrip time.

To know the site and organization on which the mailbox configured for the test exists, use the Microsoft Exchange Administrator console. This console can be opened using the menu sequence:  Start -> Programs -> Microsoft Exchange -> Microsoft Exchange Administrator. A sample Administrator Window has been given below.

adminwin3

Figure 9 : The Exchange Administrator window

A

The icon marked A represents an organization in the Exchange server. The text following the icon is the name of the organization. In our illustration, this is Ferguson & Bardell. An organization is the root or starting point of Microsoft Exchange server directory objects.

B

The icon marked B represents a site. The text following this icon is the name of the site. In our illustration, the site name is NAmerica-W. A site is nothing but a group of one or more Exchange server computers connected to the same local area network (LAN). An organization can consist of multiple sites.

C

The icon marked C represents a mail box within an Exchange server. The text following the icon is the name of the mailbox. In our illustration, Administrator is the name of a mailbox under the NAmerica-W site. A mailbox is a private repository for email and other information. To view the complete list of mail boxes within a site, click on the Recipients sub-node under that site in the left pane of the Administrator window.

Note:

Apart from Processes test, a TCP Port Status test also executes on the Application Processes layer of the Exchange Server 5.5. For more details about the TCP Port Status test, refer to the Monitoring Unix and Windows Servers document.