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Which versions of Windows Server 2003 come with Exchange Server 2003?

Posted on 2007-11-21
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I have an office with just under 50 users in it and I would like to setup a Windows 2003 Server with Exchange Server 2003.  Which version of Windows Server 2003 should I buy and which versions come with Exchange Server included?  Some background is this network is at a single location and that there are no windows servers there as of yet.  This server will be the first and probably the only Windows domain controller / e-mai server in this office.  
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Question by:Gary Gordon
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Small Business Server sounds like it would be perfect for your needs.  There are some limitations, but it comes with Sharepoint, Exchange, and is fairly easy to administer.  You can read about it at:
http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserver2003/sbs/default.mspx
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by:trturner123
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Small Business server is the only version of Windows 2003 that comes with Exchange 2003 included.  Every other version, Exchange is a seperate product/installation.
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by:Gary Gordon
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Thanks NF.  
What are my options if I don't wan't to use Small Business Server?
Does Exchange Server 2003 come with Windows Server 2003?
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by:notfuzzi
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Nah, as trturner said, it's Small Business Server or purchase Exchange separately... but you can't beat the price of SBS.
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by:Gary Gordon
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t123... You may have posted while I was typing.
Thanks for the input
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by:Gary Gordon
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What are the pitfalls of using Windows 2003 SBS?  

Basically I can not add aditional servers to the domain correct?
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by:tigermatt
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Hi ggordon777,

As mentioned above the only version of Windows Server 2003 which has Exchange included is the Small Business Version. If you opt for the Standard version, you have to purchase Exchange separately, which includes a separate license and separate client access licenses (CALs).

If you opt for an SBS server, you can add additional member servers to the domain and even make them domain controllers, in your current office or at a remote location if necessary in the future. However, the SBS *must* hold all the FSMO roles and be at the root of the domain & forest, and you cannot install SBS on another server in the same domain, you must install Windows Server 2003 Standard Edition (there can only be 1 SBS in a domain too). You cannot set up trusts between other domains if you have an SBS domain and an SBS is restricted to a maximum of 75 users. However, although the CALs are a little more expensive (when purchasing SBS CALs be sure they are in fact SBS CALs as they are different to standard CALs), they do include the licenses for Exchange and SQL server which comes with SBS 2003 as standard.

SBS is really a tightly integrated server solution, which comes with Exchange and SQL server. It is generally much cheaper than 2003 Standard, but if you can foresee going over 75 users in the near future or getting such a large network that you will need to expand Exchange or SQL server, then I would go for standard edition. You *can* buy a transition pack in the future if you had to migrate out of the SBS to a Windows 2003 standard domain, so if you can't see any of the downsides of SBS compared with a standard domain affecting you imminently, I can't see any problem with going for an SBS. An SBS also has excellent wizards to set every aspect of the server up, so if this is your first server install it should be pain-free. A 2003 standard domain with Exchange would need everything done manually which, although it can be done, ideally requires experience.

-tigermatt
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by:notfuzzi
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You can add a server as a member server, but not a domain controller.  Also you can only have 75 users total.
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by:tigermatt
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>>> You can add a server as a member server, but not a domain controller.
This is completely untrue. You can certainly add additional member servers *and* domain controllers to an SBS domain. However, you cannot have more than one SBS server in the same SBS domain, and the SBS must hold all the FSMO roles and be at the root of the domain and forest. Provided you satisfy this and never change things around, you can add additional Windows Server 2003 Standard edition domain controllers. This is how remote offices in an SBS setup often work, a replica DC & GC at a remote site is much quicker in any environment, SBS or not; if Microsoft restricted you to not having additional DCs on an SBS, there would be very few businesses out there using the product.

This web link confirms all: http://blogs.technet.com/sbs/archive/2007/10/04/debunking-the-myth-about-additional-domain-controllers-replica-dcs-in-an-sbs-domain.aspx

-tigermatt
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by:notfuzzi
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Haha, sorry I know that wasn't an exactly true statement, but I was trying to keep it simple since ggordon listed himself as a beginner in the subject, and said he didn't have any remote sites to worry about.  What I usually try to say is that for the most part, you want to make your other servers as member servers unless you are a little more experienced with server administration.  But Tigermatt is 100% correct and gave some great information.
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by:Gary Gordon
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Thank you all for the timely help!  
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