In Microsoft Exchange Server 5.5, message-flow information resides in the Gateway Address Routing Table (GWART). To view the information, you can use Notepad or a similar text editor to examine the file \mtadata\gwart0.mta. However, the information in this file doesn't give you an overview of the entire routing network and can be difficult to understand, especially in a large organization with more than 10 sites.

Microsoft has addressed the need for a better way to visualize the routing environment. Winroute, an unsupported, read-only utility in the Exchange 2000 Server CD-ROM's \support\utils\i386 directory, runs on Windows 2000 Server or Win2K Professional and lets you browse the configuration data in the in-memory Link State Table (LST). The tool consults Active Directory (AD) to convert objects' globally unique IDs (GUIDs) into names that humans can read.

When you open Winroute, it prompts you to provide the name of an Exchange server to connect or bind to. The utility then connects to the AD domain controller (DC) that the Exchange server uses, then collects data (e.g., administrative and routing groups, servers, connectors, software versions, address spaces, bridgeheads, connector status) with which it builds a picture of the routing environment. Winroute presents this information in a multipane view. In the Winroute view that Figure A shows, I connected to a server in Compaq's Exchange 2000 organization, which is approaching the end of the migration phase. Some Exchange 5.5 servers (e.g., the DBOIST-MSXCL server) still exist. Winroute lets you save routing details in an .rte file. You can open this file later to work offline—a useful feature.