With the introduction and testing of the newest Windows OS from Microsoft, system administrators are actively seeking ways to remotely manage their servers and networks. In order for this to take place administrators have to resort to several different tools, such as a second workstation running Windows XP or Windows Vista, or Virtual Workstations on their Windows 7 RC computer. I am working with the Microsoft Development department to get this listed as an approved management method for ESM. However I am still waiting for them to determine if they even want to support Windows 7 and Exchange / Server 2003.
In August of 2008, Microsoft released Exchange Manger for Windows Vista, and it worked out great for the IT community. This was released as ESMVista.msi pack from Microsoft. The good news for everyone, these tools actually do work on Windows 7 RC in an Exchange 2003 environment. However there is a slight Catch. You ask what that catch might be, you cannot install ESMVISTA.msi on a Windows 7 machine. The issue is that the MSI for Vista has a few system checks it performs to ensure you are not installing it on a Windows XP, 2003, or 2000 machine, and it will give you this lovely little message stating something like "Windows Vista is required."
The answer to this issue is to ensure the MSI file does not attempt to check your system to see what version of windows is currently running on your computer. I have taken the liberty of removing these checks and renaming the MSI file for use with Windows 7 Click Here
. If you would like to make the changes yourself you will need to download the ESMVISTA.msi from Microsoft, Click Here
and modify it yourself. Another option that I have not tested is to run the ESMVista.msi from the command prompt with the following command... This will keep you from having to edit the MSI file. Again I have not tested this procedure.
msiexec /i esmvista /q
Before you can just install this MSI file there are some other prerequisites you must perform first.
1. You will need to make sure that Microsoft Outlook is not installed on the workstation you are performing this task on, if the application is already installed you will need to temporarily remove the program. Removing Outlook will not delete your profile.
2. You will need to install the Windows 7RC update for Remote Server Administration tools. You can access this file by clicking here
to access the Microsoft site.
3. Open Control Panel and select Programs and Features.
4. Select the Turn Windows features on or off.
5. Expand Remoter Server Administration Tools and all child items. Check each of these items and click OK.
6. You will need to install the ExchangeMapiCDO.msi file from the Microsoft site by clicking here
. This update will fail to load if MS Outlook is installed on the workstation.
7. You will need to install the ESMWindows7.msi file that can be downloaded by clicking here
. You can get the ESMVISTA.msi file by clicking here
8. Open ADUC, and select the view menu to enable advanced features.
9. Reboot the computer, and re-install Outlook if needed.
In summary, Windows 7 RC will work with the same Exchange Server Management Tools as Windows Vista, you just need to get past the System Checks in the MSI files. I have tested this process in a Server 2003 Domain network that is running Exchange Server 2003. All the Exchange tabs, and task are present and operate correctly. The installation of the Exchange tools on Windows 7 is actually fairly easy and should allow you manage your network effectively without the need to copy and register those pesky .dll files.
Hope this article will assist you with your daily task. Just keep in mind this is not approved or supported by Microsoft yet. Hopefully it will be soon.
Thank you for reading.