Migrating Public Folders from one exchange to another (same site)

Posted on 2004-11-09
Last Modified: 2008-03-17
On our network, we have one standard domain all on one site with two exchange 2000 enterprise servers.  I migrated all of the mailboxes off of the primary exchange server due to low disk space so its mailboxs are basically the system built ones (in fact, i dismounted the old store that was still huge and mounted a new one without issues so its factory clean).  Right now i'm trying to turn the first exchange server into  a front end server (it is running sybari and is currently the server our unix relay box sends the mail to, so it would be a nice internal relay server).  during the prep for moving it over to front end, i noticed that when i dismount the public folder store on the ex1 box, it kills public folders for everyone on ex2.  

i didn't build out ex2 so im not sure how the replication was originally configured, but i went in there and all of the times for replication were blanked out.  i hit the default option button and it threw in the defaults and then i double checked all of the public folders and they all say that they are replicating between ex1 and ex2 (some were saying "in sync - ex1" and "local modified -ex2"  on them which i guess is exchange's way of saying they arn't in sync?  and some were "in sync" on both.  i read up on what to do a little on the net and i basically grabbed a folder that said it was in sync, removed ex1 from the folder's replication, and then dismounted Ex1's public store and it still kicked the folder offline.  i then brought ex1's store back up and turned off ex2's store, and it didn't show up then either (the other folders did though).  so i figured maybe i had to restart outlook so i restarted outlook and it wouldnt' show me any of the public folders at all, which makes me think that there is some global setting issue that i need to change to move the root of public folders over or something.

A little convoluted i know, but i'd appreciate any help you guys can provide.  i'm probably not understanding public folders correctly...
Question by:Jaidenkell
    LVL 104

    Expert Comment

    Public folder replication doesn't happen autoamtically. You need to configure it by hand. It looks like you may have done that, but check. Replication on Exchange 2000 is also very slow and the status unreliable. You may want to actually rely on an item count.

    Outlook will use the public folders that are located on the same Exchange server as the mailbox, so you need to ensure that replication is correct. However you may also want to check that the public folder store hasn't been redirected.

    However I suspect that you haven't replicated some of the folders or system folders correctly.
    This is the bible for removing your first Exchange server. Follow it very closely.

    What I would actually do is go through the entire process of removing the Exchange server that you want to make in to a front end. Then drop the host from the domain in to a workgroup, wipe and rebuild. Put it back in the domain and reinstall Exchange. This will give you a nice clean Exchange install with no hangover from the old configuration.


    Author Comment

    i'll look into that page, thanks!  the public folder syncronization stuff isn't acting like i would have assumed it would so its great to get another opinion on it...

    problem with taking the system down to the workgroup level is that this is the primary domain controller for the network (there is only one other domain controller, a small little box that i also didn't build and am wary of) and i'm trying to avoid doing that kind of an overhaul until we roll to 2003 (which will be a little ways away from now).
    LVL 104

    Accepted Solution

    Exchange needs to come out, I would probably also consider pulling IIS out.
    Otherwise build a temporary machine to run as a DC, DCPROMO it in, move all services etc and then DCPROMO out the existing machine. I do it all the time as I don't like upgraded or otherwise bodged domain controllers.

    Good to hear that you are getting Exchange off a DC, it is so much happier that way.


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