We are using Exchange 2010 to receive B2B messages as mails. To balance the increasing number of incoming mails to multiple parallel application servers, I am looking for a way to forward the mails in a round-robin fashion.

We cannot have more than one mail address for incoming messages. On the other hand, we do not want to poll this single mailbox with multiple servers. Every message should be polled and received exactly once. For performance reasons, POP3 is being used as protocol rather than IMAP.

Would it be possible to implement forwarding rules which use a random number generator or evaluate the last "pseudo random" digits of message ID or message creation time to use these as distribution critera? Could this be made even more flexible by adapting the rules dynamically according to which of the receiving servers actually is available?

migrated from superuser.com Apr 21 '13 at 17:35

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  • What does your volume look like? ... And is the rate limiter the ability of the servers to retrieve the emails, or to process/digest the emails? – Brian Adkins Apr 20 '13 at 14:27
  • The expected volume is 50,000 messages per hour. That could be 10 GByte. – Axel Kemper Apr 20 '13 at 14:34

What about having the main mailbox forward to mailbox #1 (of 10)... Then have a script run every x minutes which changes the forwarding address to the next one in line and then eventually back to #1?

The script could be set up to also monitor which servers are available


  • A script re-writing the rules would mean that the full load is routed to one server for several minutes. That is probably too long. The Exchange admins might not like the idea either, because the set of rules should be of high quality and as stable as possible. – Axel Kemper Apr 20 '13 at 15:55

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