For some time I’ve been wondering why none of my Debian/Ubuntu workstations would resolve something like ‘proxy.mycompany.local’. Simpy resolving ‘proxy’ would work.

I already knew that .local is not a correct tld, but since it was recomended by Microsoft to use this when installing Active Directory we used it. I never had any problems with it because most of the time I just use ip addresses when I need to access a server.

Now I installed a proxy server and a new mail relay server so I started using them as proxy.mycompany.local and relay.mycompany.local. The I found out that none of my Debian or Ubuntu workstations would resolve those addresses. At first I blamed the Microsoft DNS server for this. That’s the easiest and most logical thing to do ;-). But Windows XP/Vista clients did resolve those addresses. Strange huh?

Then I started wireshark on my client. I did a query for proxy.mycompany.local and then there was…. an MDNS request instead of a normal DNS request?!?

This quickly gave me the conclusion that it was something avahi related because this does all the zeroconf stuff with Debian/Ubuntu. Avahi seems to be configured to pick up any request ending in .local and make MDNS requests for it. This must be a problem for more people because there must be loads of Microsoft networks out there ending in .local. I won’t say this is a fault from the avahi guys because it’s also completely wrong to use .local as tld.

My current solution is to just simply disable Avahi on my workstations. On Ubuntu I just do ‘System -> Administration -> Services’ and disable ‘Multicast DNS Service Discovery’ there. With Debian I just disable the startup of Avahi in /etc/default/avahi-daemon by settting ‘AVAHI_DAEMON_START=0’.

We’ve got Microsoft Exchange server…. *sigh*… I’m very Linux minded, but now I administer 4 Microsoft Windows 2003 servers. One of then runs Exchange 2007.

Today I needed group mailboxes. Simple… A mailbox to which multiple users have access. So I just open the Exchange 2007 Management Console, create a new mailbox, add a group as the owner, put the right people in the group and we’re done… Not quite. It’s not possible to add a group as owner to a mailbox from the management console.

Google is your friend. So I shifted to the pages google gave me but none of the had the real answer I needed. Until I finally hit this page written by Tyson Kopczynski. It explained that it isn’t possible to do it from the management console, but you have to use the Microsoft Exchange 2007 Management Shell.

Just to save you (and myself) a click I copied it here:

1. Create a Domain Group named MBX-<mailboxname>-Full.

2. Next, run the following command to grant MBX-<mailboxname>-Full full access to the shared mailbox: get-mailbox -identity “<mailboxname>” | add-mailboxpermission -user “MBX-<mailboxname>-Full” -accessrights ‘FullAccess’

3. Finally, run the following command to grant MBX-<mailboxname>-Full modify access to the mailbox’s “Personal Information” attributes: get-mailbox -identity “<mailboxname>” | add-adpermission -user “MBX-<mailboxname>-Full” -accessrights:ReadProperty, WriteProperty -properties ‘Personal Information’ -extendedrights ‘Send-As’

Of course you need to replace <mailboxname> with the name of you mailbox… Duh…