Will transferring my domain name from one host to another affect my exchange server?

I currently have a domain registered and hosted with earthlink.com.  I have an exchange server that uses this domain name exampledomainname.com.  Earthlink is charging me $99.99 per month to host this domain.  They say to charge me the new hosting price of $19.99 per month they will have to move my domain/site from their old server to the new one.  Then they would have to change the DNS entries on the domain to reflect this move and this could cause an outage for 24 - 72 hours.  

My question is, will this affect my exchange email services?  It seems as if it would just use the old DNS and MX record settings until the very second the domain switched from one dns server to another and that the new one would just take over with no down time.  I can't afford any downtime but I also don't like that they are charging us $100 a month because the plan we signed up for several years ago was at this price point.

I am new to Exchange so if I'm stating this wrong feel free to correct me.  The way it seems to me is that my registrar, Earthlink, has my current MX records, A records and DNS settings and why would those change just because they are moving me from an old to a newer server?
Who is Participating?
I wear a lot of hats...

"The solutions and answers provided on Experts Exchange have been extremely helpful to me over the last few years. I wear a lot of hats - Developer, Database Administrator, Help Desk, etc., so I know a lot of things but not a lot about one thing. Experts Exchange gives me answers from people who do know a lot about one thing, in a easy to use platform." -Todd S.

Irwin SantosComputer Integration SpecialistCommented:
you will experience downtime.. it's the nature of the beast..

or the change of service.

you'll save $960 per year.. it's worth it for 3 days of downtime.. plan for the weekend transfer.  You may want to inform your email crew to use an alternate email address during the planned outage.
Ask them if they can provide secondary MX records that will hold you mail while the move is taking place, or if they can overlap services in a way that won't have downtime.

Quite frankly, it may be more that they are unwilling to do anything but their 'standard' in procedures, more than you must experience downtime.

Experts Exchange Solution brought to you by

Your issues matter to us.

Facing a tech roadblock? Get the help and guidance you need from experienced professionals who care. Ask your question anytime, anywhere, with no hassle.

Start your 7-day free trial
[you will experience downtime.. it's the nature of the beast..]

Actually this can be avoided

Don't close your hosting accound w/ Earthlink until the transfer has completed

Upload your content and copy of any databases to your new host and make the necessary DNS changes to your domain record

Earthlink will continue to display until your change request has been completed (12 - 36 hrs to be proprogated through the internet)

Once complete, close the Earthlink account
Earthlink hold your dns records so they're pointing mx records to your exchange server.

When they move your hosting from one server to another they should just change the A/Cname records for the domain. There should be no reason for them to delete the zone and start again.

If they're moving the domain from one dns server to another at the same time then they should copy the mx settings over.

No hosting company with any credibility should allow a site to be down for 24/72 hours when moving from one server to another and to be honest I think the excuses they've given regarding moving the site to another server and downtime is probably complete rubbish to prevent you from taking up the move.

In theory you could sign up as a new customer, buy a new hosting package for the domain at the new price, set your own mx records and handle the move yourself.

I've just completed the move for a web site doing 30,000 visitors per day, moving between servers that were 400 miles appart and there was not one lost visitor or second of downtime in the whole process!  It can be done if you've got a decent host that isn't out to rip you off.

(Based on what they've told you I'd be inclined to find another host)
Irwin SantosComputer Integration SpecialistCommented:
@lewisiq...did you forget us?
It's more than this solution.Get answers and train to solve all your tech problems - anytime, anywhere.Try it for free Edge Out The Competitionfor your dream job with proven skills and certifications.Get started today Stand Outas the employee with proven skills.Start learning today for free Move Your Career Forwardwith certification training in the latest technologies.Start your trial today

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.

Question has a verified solution.

Are you are experiencing a similar issue? Get a personalized answer when you ask a related question.

Have a better answer? Share it in a comment.