Global Catalog Reads

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    Does Exchange need to have a global catalog server from each child domain located within its site for best performance?


    Single Forest:

    Four Child Domains:

    All Exchange Servers are members of the same AD domain ( and in the same AD site (Exchange-Site) with two dedicated DC’s that are both global catalog servers, located in the same (Exchange-Site) site and members of the domain.

    We have users with AD accounts in all of the domains that have their mailboxes located on the Exchange Servers.

    As expected, when watching various counters (i.e. LDAP Read call/Sec) on the CAS servers I see that Exchange is making calls to the two GDC’s located within its site as expected; I also can see that it is making calls to GDC’s which are members of the emea, ap and la domains and located in different sites. Note: All sites links have the same cost (hub and spoke)

    From my understanding, Exchange should be able to retrieve all of its information from the two GDC located within the Exchange-Site site and not be making calls to other GDC’s in other sites. My only thought is that since the two GDC’s are both members of the NA domain, Exchange is looking for GDC’s that are members of the other domains for some reason.

    Has anyone else seen this behavior and is there something that I need to adjust so that Exchange doesn’t look at the GDC’s in the other domains? I have already hard-coded the local DC’s and GDC’s into the CAS servers which didn’t stop them from making calls to various emea, la and ap GDC’s.

    Any input is appreciated. Thanks.

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