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Move mailboxes from Exchange 2000 to 2003 in New Domain

Posted on 2007-10-15
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Have an exisitng Exchange 2000 Server (which is running on Small Business Server 2000) and want to move the mailboxes to a new Exchange 2003 Server (running Small Business Server 2003). What is the best way to copy the mailboxes from the old server to the new one? I intend to setup the new Server with the same name as the old one, then disconnect the old one. That means, I assume, that I'll need to somehow export/import the mailboxes. Never done this - so if I'm taking the wrong approach, feel free to tell me!
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Question by:scion111
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by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 20082666
I would strongly suggest you purchase the kit from www.sbsmigration.com - it's really the best way to migrate from one SBS server to another.

Otherwise, you'll spend a lot more time trying to do things manually yourself.
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by:tonydav67
ID: 20082680
Depending on the size of the migration I would use ExMerge.  It's a free tool from Microsoft.  Certainly not a hard task with 20 or so mailboxes - of course if you have 500 you might want to look at purchasing a dedicated tool.

Information on ExMerge can be found here: http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx/kb/327304
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by:JjcampNR
ID: 20082751
You can also create a trust between your two domains, then simply move the mailboxes using the tools that are part of Exchange.  I do agree that if you only have a few mailboxes to move, there's no need to create a trust, just export the mailboxes to PST using Exmerge then import them back on the new server.
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by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 20082813
I'm guessing neither of you are very familiar with SBS - SBS does not support trusts so you cannot create one.
And since SBS supports a MAXIMUM of 75 users, 500 mailboxes would be a bit surprising.
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by:tonydav67
ID: 20082859
You can certainly use ExMerge to do what he's after. And you're guessing wrong - my comment about 500 users was simply an exaggeration.
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by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 20082913
Great - do you have experience with migrating from one SBS system to another?  Exmerge can dump the mailboxes once you adjust permissions and then reimport them... but the SBS migration suite was designed to migrate EVERYTHING - users, exchange, computers - and even in a small network - if you're going to setup a new domain, profile migration, computer migration, file migration is all a huge pain unless you use the proper tools.

I'm guessing since you didn't agree outright with SBS Migration (and didn't fill out your profile, so I'm stuck with just guessing), your expertise lies more in the enterprise class of windows products.  The problem is (and I learned this the hard way - SBS is not an Enterprise product - it's not supposed to be installed or managed - or migrated - with an Enterprise mindset.  
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by:Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy
ID: 20083025
EXMerge is one option that's available when migrating... and is sometimes used with the SwingIT Migration method from www.sbsmigration.com.

What's most important to point out here to the asker is this:
"I intend to setup the new Server with the same name as the old one, then disconnect the old one."

That definitely WON'T work unless you use the SwingIT Migration from www.sbsmigration.com.  Otherwise, you would need to follow the specific migration guidelines outlined in http://sbsurl.com/migrate which doesn't allow you to keep the same domain name let alone the same server name.

Jeff
TechSoEasy

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by:scion111
ID: 20085109
Thanks for all the comments thus far. I only have 7 mailboxes to move and have looked at Exmerge a bit -just not familiar with it yet. As far as the Server name, I can use a different name if that makes the process any easier. I'd definitely prefer to keep the .local domain name the same. Leew mentioned someting about permissions being adjusted. If I export a user's mailbox and they have the same name on the new SBS2003 Server, do I need to change any permissions? I'm going to look at the sites TechSoEasy mentined and will advise. Any other comments/ideas are welcome.
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by:scion111
ID: 20085434
Quickly looked at the links from TechSoEasy. I'm actually not trying to do a migration (and sorry I didn't clarify sooner!). I'm creating everything new on the SBS2003 Server (Users, groups,etc.), manually moving some data folders, etc. This client never took advantage of SBS's features and there was nothing elaborate setup that warranted a migration. The old SBS2000 Server basically just stored data. I only want to move everyone's email messages to the new Exchange Store. Hope that helps...
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by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 20086769
The first time I used exmerge, I could only export the mailbox of the admin account I was using - you need to adjust the permissions in System Manager so that the account using Exmerge has full access to them.  Otherwise, ExMerge will fail on all other accounts.  Likewise, to import, you'll need to do the same.
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tonydav67 earned 1600 total points
ID: 20089115
Yes that's correct. Permission can also be added via the Exchange Advanced tab in Active Directory Users and Computers. For Scion111, assuming you'll be using the administrator account you'll need to

* Run Active Directory Users and Computers
* Right click on each user and click properties
* Click on the Exchange Advanced tab **
* Click on Mailbox Rights and add rights for administrator for all of these accounts.

** Note sometimes the "Exchange Advanced" tab is missing.  If this is the case you'll need to Tick the "Advanced Features" option from the "View" menu.

Then run ExMerge (I'd suggest in interactive mode) to export the mailboxes.

Of course on the other side you'll need to first setup the new accounts, with an exchange account.

Then do the same as above to give administrator access to those accounts.

Then run ExMerge to import the mailboxes.  At this stage you could also simply give each user a copy of the PST file generated by the initial ExMerge and ask them to copy everything in, but personally when I do a transfer like this I do it for them.

The whole procedure doesn't actually take long if you don't have many user accounts and best of all there's no additional cost involved!
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by:Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy
Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy earned 400 total points
ID: 20089829
That's fine if you're creating everything new... and EXMerge is the way to go then.  see http://sbsurl.com/exmerge

Be sure to also remove the workstations from the old domain though before attaching them to the new server.

Jeff
TechSoEasy
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Author Comment

by:scion111
ID: 20103280
Sorry for the delay - been experimenting on Virtual Machines. The only thing not clear is the difference between using ExMerge and just going to each PC, exporting the entire Mailbox (including subfolders) and importing it into the new account. Is it just convenience? Or will ExMerge do something more?
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Author Comment

by:scion111
ID: 20104124
Also, TechSoEasy mentioned

"Be sure to also remove the workstations from the old domain though before attaching them to the new server."

Please explain what it does and why it needs to be done. Thanks!!
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by:tonydav67
tonydav67 earned 1600 total points
ID: 20104305
Essentially you're right.  You could go to each machine, login as the user and export the mailbox to a PST file.  ExMerge does that from the server and apart from having to add the permissions, is very quick to run.  You also don't need to get people to login or manually open their mailboxes.  It's a much faster process.

On the target machine it's even better as once you've made the security  changes you can use ExMerge as a "quick and dirty" backup system for your mailboxes. I.e. run it daily by script and then copy the files off.  Whilst not as good as other options it's much better than the approach most sites take (i.e. no backup :).

What TechSoEasy is referring to here is that once you setup the new domain you will need to attach all of your existing workstations to it.  You will first have to disconnect from the existing domain though.  This is easily done by simply changing the domain to a workgroup (on the computer name page on system properties), then reconnect back to the domain.  It is an important step though.
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Author Comment

by:scion111
ID: 20104704
Thanks tonydav67 and TechSoEasy. Lots of great info!
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by:tonydav67
ID: 20104965
More than happy to help!
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