Is it possible to test exchange 2007 in an exchange 2003 production enviroment?

We are currently running exchagne 2003 in a windows 2003 AD environment.  I would like to start looking at exchange 2007, but am not sure what the best option would be for testing/familiarizing.  Can I install exchange 2007 on a virtual machine and connect it to my current domain or will this cause problems?  I assume the best scenario would be to setup a completely separate network, but I do not have the resources.  What have people done in the past to test out exchange before doing an actaul transition?
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BertlingConnect With a Mentor Commented:
yes you can but i really dont advise it. and if you dont like it then you have to go through the hassel of removing it and making sure you dont upset any thing.

best thing would be to get a spare server or high powered PC;
download VMWARE worksation 6 and install it
use p2v to take a image of the productive DC and exchange server.
then open these 2 virtual images in your nee workstation 6 vmware lab
then create a new virtual machine running 64bit OS and install exchange 2007 in to your enviornment.

hope this help
Yes, you can test exchange in a production environment without problem, but you should read the all documentation before install exchange 2007 for understand if your environment is compatible with this version.

This article can you help:

ohmErnieAuthor Commented:
Bertling - By using P2V will that make a copy of the physical machine and convert to virtual OR will it convert to a virtual machine and wipe out the physical?  i dont want to run this against my domain controller if it is going to blow it away.
its fine! dontworry you wont break anything! all you need to do is
istall p2v on the dc
run p2v on the server
this will then allow you to save the image somewhere on your DC or over the network if you wish.
in a nut shell it just takes a snapshot of your physical server and puts it in to a virtual image which vmware can read,all this is done with no downtime and no affect what to sever to the server itself or performance.
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