How I do uninstall Exchange 2003 from 1 of 2 servers?

Posted on 2006-11-21
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2010-03-06
I have a brand new 2003 domain in mixed mode running two Exchange 2003 servers in native mode (both of which are DC's). I want to uninsall Exchange from one of the two servers and leave it running on the other. I have already moved all remaining mailboxes off of the Exchange server that I'd like to take Exchange off of and I've verified that the Exchange server that is staying in place is the "routing" server for the group. Every time I try to delete a store or uninstall Exchange from the original CD or Add/Remove Programs it get messages telling me that it can't because their are still mailboxes on the server or something similiar. What is the correct process of taking Exchange 2003 off of a server when it's not the last Exchange server in your network? The Search on MS' Support Site doesn't seem to be working today either.  :(
Question by:Biziteks
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LVL 26

Expert Comment

ID: 17991578
just make sure the exchange server that u are trying too get rid off is not the first exchange server....if that is the case
USING ADSIEdit....go to ur exchange organization and delete the server.....
this is very easy to do .....BUT....u have to make sure ur public folders do not have the deleted server as replication partner....and outlook clients are all pointing to the remainig server....so before u delete the server , unplug it from
network and see if ur outlook clients are reporting any problem...

Accepted Solution

smeek earned 2000 total points
ID: 17991800
Could be some mailboxes are really on the old server, even though you can't them in ESM.  Download the 2003 Support Tools and install.  Run the ldp utility as described below.


When you run it, you may see 3 or more mailboxes.  The SMTP, system attend and one other can't be deleted, but look for other users.  I recently found it said 3 other users were there, though I could not see in ESM.  Sure enough, when I moved mailboxes on those users it worked.

BTW, here is the official decommissioning doc I used.

LVL 104

Expert Comment

ID: 17995672
The problem you are seeing is very common, and you don't have to use the hack out methods to get rid of the server.
Most of the time it is down to an unused mailbox.

Take a look at the end of my migration article (http://www.amset.info/exchange/migration.asp). There I have outlined a technique to find the unused mailboxes.


Expert Comment

ID: 17995975
Using LDP isn't really a hack out method.  It just helps you locate which mailboxes need to be moved using the Move Mailbox facility.

LVL 104

Expert Comment

ID: 17996018
I was referring to the use of ADSIEDIT.msc rather than LDP.


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