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To move an Exchange 2003 to new hardware keeping the same server name

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To move an Exchange 2003 to new hardware keeping the sa... - 5.Dec.2007 12:42:28 PM   
melc

 

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I have new hardware and want to migrate my Exchange Server 2003 Enterprise SP2 to it using http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/aa997176.aspx  as this seems like a straightforward way of doing things. The current server is running Windows 2003 Standard SP2 and the new hardware has come with OEM Windows Server 2003 Standard R2 SP2 . Does anyone know if this will cause issues as the technet article above states "the new computer must have the same operating system installed as the original computer" .

Thanks
Post #: 1
RE: To move an Exchange 2003 to new hardware keeping th... - 5.Dec.2007 2:03:13 PM   
jassyca

 

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Hi!

You don't absolutely have to have the same OS. Although it's true that having the exact same OS on the new server would be the safest way to go, as long as you aren't doing a System State restore of the OS.. and you've made your proper sacrifices to the Computer gods (ie, burn a 5 1/4" floppy at midnight while chanting "Bill is Great" ).. you should be able to get away with a different OS on the new server. As long as you aren't going backwards in versions, so to speak. So you want to match service packs, hot fixes and other patches as much as you can.

Plus, as the article says, you also want to match drive letters to the old server (although you don't have to match the sizes of the old drives, long as they are not smaller). That's because the configuration of your current Exchange server says "THIS drive\path is where I put my logs files, THIS drive\path is where I find my mailbox stores, THIS drive\path is where to find my Exchange program files", etc and so on. That's not stored on the server itself, it's in Active Directory. Thus when the new server becomes your Exchange server, it's going to ask AD, hey, where do I find this, that, and the other thing? The new server, since it's taking the old server's place, will be told to look in those same locations. So it'll have a nasty little hissy fit if it doesn't find things in just the right places.

If you've got the time and equipment, I would highly recommend creating a test environment and trying out the migration steps. Make yourself an isolated little test domain with a test Exchange server, etc. Matter of fact, if your test equipment has enough umph (drive space, ram, etc), you might even try doing a System State restore of one of your Domain controllers (one, of course, that has the Global Catalog) and and System State & file restore of your Exchange server in your test environment and then try the migration. It's amazing the little "gotcha's" you'll find when you are able to test the steps with stuff that's as close to the real thing as possible. Old programs that you thought weren't being used that still have junk leftover in your Services applet, drivers that don't work on the new OS, etc. etc. A test walk-through can be a life saver.

(in reply to melc)
Post #: 2
RE: To move an Exchange 2003 to new hardware keeping th... - 6.Dec.2007 12:45:56 AM   
Exchange.Specialist

 

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Joined: 24.Nov.2007
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I wish i could write at lenght answering your question (Alas, im too lazy). I think that you wouldnt face any problems at all cause when your moving your server to a new hardware, we are simply using the switch disaster recovery. (Now, hope you have the patience to read a couple of lines more).

This switch would simple look at your configuration partition of Active Directory and accordingly bring back information into your Exchange Server.

To answer your question (long story short) my answer would be: As long as the drives are same, O/S would not cause much of problems at all.

(in reply to jassyca)
Post #: 3
RE: To move an Exchange 2003 to new hardware keeping th... - 6.Dec.2007 9:54:43 AM   
melc

 

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I figured as much! I know exactly what you mean about the test network. Many moons ago I did set up one when I had to do a migration from 5.5 to 2003 (too scary to contemplate without!) and thank god I did as there where so many gotchas that I wouldn't have found without it. Keep meaning to get a virtual test network set up but its on the list of things that need to be done but lack of time dictates otherwise!

Oh well, I had kind of resigned my self to the fact there would be no definitve text book answer and I thought of asking MS direct but  feel 99% sure they'll say "it should work but we don't support it"

The alternative to winging it is to just stick 2003 Standard on it instead of R2.. mm

plenty to ponder!

Thanks


(in reply to melc)
Post #: 4
RE: To move an Exchange 2003 to new hardware keeping th... - 6.Dec.2007 1:57:55 PM   
jassyca

 

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See if you can get management to allow you to purchase a "hell-on-wheels" desktop. Something that's just totally max'd out memory-wise (4Gb), with dual processors and a monsterously huge hard drive (SATA, get SATA if you can!) then go download VMWare server (the free version) or Microsoft's Virtual PC. Then use the monster-desktop as the host for your test environment. 

(in reply to melc)
Post #: 5
RE: To move an Exchange 2003 to new hardware keeping th... - 6.Dec.2007 3:32:54 PM   
Exchange.Specialist

 

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I'm not sure if MS would deny support. There is a clear cut policy with MS that if they do not support anything they have to provide a documentation in form of kb article , technet article supporting what they say (ofcourse which should also make sense)

(in reply to jassyca)
Post #: 6
RE: To move an Exchange 2003 to new hardware keeping th... - 13.Sep.2011 3:28:53 AM   
lapwlover

 

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Joined: 12.Sep.2011
Status: offline
For database, it is safer to choose one reliable tool to backup it. Trust backup software on the market, such as todo backup, nova, clonezilla, Acronis. They are more versatility software and all they can do this. Personally, I recommend todo backup for price.
 It also can provide advanced backup scheduler and one-click to recover system to dissimilar hardware, incremental backup,  differential backup, backup Exchange server, backup SQL server, backup to tape for 2003/2008/2000 servers.
You can download it trial version to check it.

(in reply to melc)
Post #: 7

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