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Exchange 2003 and Global Catalog Server

Posted on 2007-03-19
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Last Modified: 2010-03-06
I am replacing a Domain Controller which happens to be a Global Catalog Server and want to know if there are any special concerns related to Exchange and its Outlook clients.  I have documentation of issues related to Exchange 2000 (KB 305065) and am hoping these do not apply to Exchange 2003 SP2--expecially the part about restarting all Outlook 2002 and 2000 clients.

Do I need to follow the instructions on KB 305065?

Is there a way to force Exchange to refer clients to specific GCs?
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Question by:SSD-ECN
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by:poweruser32
ID: 18750098
ya exchange takes about half an hour to find a GC when the one it has been using is taken off the network
this qs came up lately- what you need to do is to stop and restart the exchange services and exchange will find another GC but make sure you have another available one on the network
also make sure that in the  excahnge tcp ip dns settings you have the other dc configured
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Expert Comment

by:nitadmin
ID: 18750408
Yes you need to make sure that you have another Global Catalog server before you remove your current Global Catalog server. Exchange 2003 Server depends heavily on Global Catalog server. Without a GC server, you going to have sersious problems. So make sure you another GC server in your LAN.

How many Domain Controllers do you have?
How many of your Domain controllers are also GC servers?

I suggest making all of your Domain Controllers Global Catalog Servers.
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Expert Comment

by:nitadmin
ID: 18750456
Is there a way to force Exchange to refer clients to specific GCs?

Yes, you will need to modify registry keys on your Exchange server and your Global Catalog server.
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Author Comment

by:SSD-ECN
ID: 18750881
I have 4 Domain Controllers.  All are GC servers EXCEPT the one that holds the PDC Emulator role.  At one time, the DC that I now need to retire was the ONLY GC server.

I would like to uncheck the GC setting on this DC, reboot it and wait as long as it takes for Exchange to be aware of the change then DCPROMO it down and unplug it.

I just want to be sure that:
1.  Exchange repoints itself and Outlook clients to another GC
2.  Exchange doesn't have any registry setting made by the former Administrator which specifically points it to the soon-to-be-retired GC.

Where do I look for this registry setting?
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Accepted Solution

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Sembee earned 500 total points
ID: 18752921
What I do when faced with the task that you want to do is very simple.

I will remove the GC role and DCPROMO the box out.
Then restart the Exchange services - often while the (former) domain controller is rebooting. This will force Exchange to go looking for another GC/DC. No waiting around, minimal downtime.

Clients are a different matter - the only reliable way is to ask them to reboot.

Simon.
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