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Exchange 2003 to Exchange 2010 Migration - Request Local Move Or Exmerge to PST? Fastest?

Last Modified: 2012-05-09

I'm at the final stages of migrating my SBS 2003 Exchange 2003 over to Server 2008 STD w/ Exchange 2010. Everything went perfect and now i'm undecided on moving the mailboxes.

I want to do this the fastest way possible, we have about 40 users and 4 of our users have 5GB mailbox each. The rest are about 1.5GB each. Total DB size is about 60GB.

It's Sunday night and we are back in business tomorrow morning (in about 8 hours). I plan on doing this upcoming Friday but if this process will take less then 10 hours then i can plan for tomorrow evening.

So my question is.. Should i export all mailboxes to PST using Exmerge on 2003 server or should i just do straight local move request using Exchange 2010? Which one will be faster?

I tried using Exmerge earlier today to export one of the 5GB mailboxes and it took over 4 hours to complete.

If i use 2010 to move mailboxes, any of you guys know how long the ETA may be for all 40 users?
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Solutions Architect
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It's in the same forest. My original 2003 server was the domain controller, and the only DNS/AD in the network. I'm moving the DC/AD/DNS over to the new Win Server 2008 too.

But yes, its in the same forest. Any ETA?
BusbarSolutions Architect

usually I move around 8-10 GB per hour, in some cases I got 6 but this is vary depending on network, HW and disk speed but those are my average.
also do eseutil and isinteg to avoid any database corruption that will give you move errors


Both servers are pretty beefy, the old server is a xeon 7200 SAS drives in a raid 5 formation. The new server is dual quad xeon on 15K SAS drives w/ 8GB ram..

I did a test 2GB mailbox move and it took less then 2 minutes but i don't know if should go this route.

I was told if i do a local move, the mailbox is NO LONGER available on the 2003 server. But if i do a exmerge to PST, it leaves the mailbox on old server so just in case something happens i always have the mails on the old server.
BusbarSolutions Architect

Yes, but keep in mind that if the mailbox move failed then nothing occurs to the original mailbox, I have done that several time. I just want to spare to you the double work


Ok, thanks. I think i should hold off until Friday evening to do any moves since i only have 8 hours to finish the 40 user move. I rather not run into any problems.

I'll go the Local move request way and see how everything goes. BTW i opened up another question regarding autodiscover, if you have any insight on Exchange 2010 autodiscover then let me know!


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