This is a problem that's been plaguing my network for quite some time now. This is the first time I thought I'd ask for help.
We have a Small Business Server 2003 based domain with 20 PC's running Windows 2000 and Windows XP. Originally all the PC's were running Office 2000, which didn't seem to have any problems (I also only had about 12 users then too, don't know if this makes a difference. My SBS server has 25 user CALs). When I upgraded some of the users to Outlook 2003 (in order to utilize IMAP as well as exchange mail), this problem crept in. Users would be able to login to windows, and access their email via outlook... and then, after an unspecified period of time (sometimes hours, sometimes days), they would "loose connectivity to the server". Sometimes "the connection to the server has been restored" and everything goes on happily, sometimes the user has to close outlook (occassionally they also need to kill the outlook.exe process), sometimes the user needs to restart their computer, in order to reconnect to the exchange server.
Possible contributory factors
Exchange Store size:
I'm aware of the 16 Gig Storage limit on the exchange server built into SBS2003. We had hit the limit about 6 months back. Now we're hovering around the 10-12 Gig mark.
Individual users mailbox size:
I don't know if I'm imagining things, but I think it generally only happens to staff who's mailbox's are really large (approaching and over 1 Gig).
Mainly P4 2.8G, with 2-3 Gig's of DDR400 RAM. One user (who has the largest mailbox) has a Core 2 Duo 2.5G with 4 Gig's of DDR2-800 RAM (still windows XP [yes, 32-bit memory limit], but the machine's for a Vista Business 64bit license... which I may upgrade the user to once I've fully tested vista on the network... but I digress)
The Key to the problem:
Occassionally, after a user kills their outlook, and re-opens it, a password dialog pops up, requesting domain username and password (actually there are only username and password fields, but the username needs to be typed as "domainusername" in order to get reconnected). The dialoge box also has a "remember this password" option.
It looks really similar to the type that Internet Explorer uses to access password protected webpages. I've seen the outlook dialoge boxes for Pop3 connections... which is different from this popup...
Any help/comments would be greatly appreciated.