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Upgrading/Migrating NT 4.0 w/Exchange 5.5 Domain to Windows 2003/Exchange 2003 Domain

Dear Experts,

I have Exchange 5.5 on NT4 BDC, and I would like to upgrade/migrate to Exchange 2003 on Windows Server 2003 R2.  The domain was originally NT4.0, but I already upgraded to Windows 2003 R2 domain.  The new server is already a member server of the upgraded domain.  I already ran forestprep and domainprep successfully.  I installed and started running ADC tools.  The tools ran fine until I started to run the connection Agreement Wizard.

q1) The Connection Agreement Wizard gave me a "warning: the staging area domain is not in native mode. Group membership and security cannot be properly managed unless the staging area is in a native mode domain.  I left the domain under mix mode because I have NT4 BDC that's still running.  Should I raise the domain/forest functionality before I proceed?  How would raising the domain/forest funtionality affect My Exchange 5.5 (also a BD)?

q2) When I'm ready to install Exchange, do I select New Exchagnge 2003 Installation or Coexistence with Exchange 5.5 (since I already have an existing Exchange 5.5 server)?  I don't know if I'll have time to move all of the mailboxes over in one shot, so I may not be able to take down my 5.5 that same day.

Thank you.
2 Solutions

Q1)You are right you should leave it in mixed mode as coexistence will not be supported in Native Mode .

Q2)You have to check coexistence with Exchange 5.5 as you have 5.5 in your ORG.

You can download Exchnage 2003 Deployment guide from Microsoft for migration.

NetoMeter ScreencastsCommented:
Normally you do not decomission your old Exchange 5.5 server immediately. Leave it for a while until everybody opens their Outlook and gets repointed to the new server. Otherwise you will have to manually (or using ExProfre.EXE ) reconfigure the Outlook profiles.
It is a good idea to shut down the exchange 5.5 server and keep it at least for a couple of days before you decomission it.
Another good idea is to check the most common mistakes when performing such an Upgrade/Migration:

dragon00gsrAuthor Commented:
Thank you both.

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