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Exchange transition 2003 > 2007, Public folders and CCR

I understand that CCR replication cannot be used if there are public folders on the mailbox server.  

I need to transition into a mixed Exchange 2003 / 2007 environment while making use of CCR and SCR and keeping Public Folders.

Current environment is a single Exchange 2003 SP2 server with 600 users and 800 Public folders.  I have 2x datacenters at my disposal for DR.

Required environment is for 2x Exchange 2003 servers, one in each datacenter.  I want to house public folders on these servers and replicate across the datacenters.  I then want to add a CCR mbx cluster (on two nodes) in one datacenter.  This will hold user mailboxes.  I also want to create an SCR mbx single node cluster in the other datacenter.  This will replicate the user mailboxes onto a DR site.  I don't want public folders on my Exchange 2007 servers.   I must have public folders as the desktop team are not migrating Outlook 2003 up to 2007 in the near future.

1- Is it true that I cannot use Public Folders with CCR?
2- Must I have Public Folder Replicas on any Exchange 2007 Server?  If I do, can I put them ONLY on the SCR node?
3- When I install Exchange 2007, can I choose to not install Public Folders?

Many thanks
Coopz
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Tommy_Cooper
Asked:
Tommy_Cooper
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1 Solution
 
MesthaCommented:
It is correct that you cannot have public folders on the CCR system.
Therefore you would need to have a dedicated public folder server and set the stores to point there instead.

With regards to SCR, you can have public folders on an SCR server, but the not use SCR on the SG with the public folders involved. This isn't a problem because SCR is set a Storage Group level, not server.
Thus you could have public folders on a server with SCR for the other storage groups.

However, Outlook 2003 in particular is very heavy on public folders for its operation, so you would need to have a public folder store in both locations. You can of course replicate the public folders between the two servers.

During the install Exchange will ask you if there are any legacy clients in use. You would choose no. However it is simple enough to drop the store if it does install it.
Saying that, I would probably install other servers first before the CCR system, which would host the public folders.

Simon.
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Tommy_CooperAuthor Commented:
Thank you Simon. That is very helpful.

"Therefore you would need to have a dedicated public folder server and set the stores to point there instead. "
- How do I point the stores at a remote PF?

 I also had a thought about this, this morning....

- If I have a user who uses Outlook 2003 and the user mailbox is on an Exchange 2007 server, does the public folder that contains free/busy for this user, MUST exist on the same server?

Regards
Coopz

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MesthaCommented:
Must? No, in theory at least anyway.
I do one of two things.
If the server is NOT CCR etc, then I have public folder on the server.
If the server is on CCR then I would have a server with the public folder store and set the mailbox stores to use that public folder store.

In theory Outlook should find the public folder if the one it wants is not available locally. In practise I find it doesn't. Therefore you need to ensure that the data is either available locally or the store is pointing to a public folder server - what we used to call a dedicated public folder server in the good old days of Exchange 2003.

Simon.
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Tommy_CooperAuthor Commented:
Thank you Simon.

I have just trashed all my servers and am re-configing the snapshots. I will give this a run through tomorrow.

Rgds
Coopz
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Tommy_CooperAuthor Commented:
This is all good.  Except I still don't have my Exchange 2007 stuff back up and running yet :(  

How do I point the mailbox store to a dedicated Public Folder store?  Remember the mailboxes will be on EXCH2007 (CCR) and the public folders on EXCH2003.  

Regards
Coopz
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MesthaCommented:
Once the public folder store is available, on the properties of the mailbox store you can set the public folder store on the Client Settings tab. After making the change restart the information store service.

Simon.
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Tommy_CooperAuthor Commented:
Simon,
Many thanks for your help. I am sure all will be good :)
Coopz
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