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Exchange 2007 to Exchange 2010 juggling act.

We are very excited about the new option to archive SMS on Exchange 2010, and would like to upgrade our current Exchange 2007 server.

Where we are kinda breaking the norm. is that we want to still use the same server as it's one of beefiest spec'ed systems we own.  We do have other hardware available, but nothing as powerful or with as much RAM as our current Exchange system.  I've also been told we don't have a budget for spec'ing out all new hardware at this time.

What my thoughts are....bring one of our extra systems up as a new exchange server, migrate all the primary roles to this server, and then kill off our big server.  Format, reinstall OS, and then install Exchange, again, migrate all the rolls back to our main server, and then kill off the "extra hardware" system.

I know this would have to be done over the course of a few days to a week or so to let everything sync up, and also to check for errors that might be cropping up in the event logs between each step...

My question for you guys is....is this a doable "Upgrade path" for keeping the same server running as our Exchange server in the end...

and....should our "extra hardware" system first match, with Exchange 2007, and then let our beefy system be the first Exchange 2010 system...or should the "Extra hardware" just start the Exchange 2010 upgrade?

thanks....Please ask any clarity questions you might need to ask...as I know this upgrade is a bit "out side of the box"
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Evil_RSA
Asked:
Evil_RSA
1 Solution
 
a1rh0pperCommented:
We went through this recently.....may be a bit of overkill....but the path we took was as follows....

Load up a machine with ESXi free from VMWare.....use VMConvert to convert the physical to a virtual running on ESXi. This gave us an exact duplicate of the Exchange server with all data intact.

Then blow out the "big box" and install the new OS and Exchange 2010 and migrate that way.

As an alternate to VMConvert, you can also use tools like Acronis or ShadowProtect to back up the box....and then import the backup image into ESXi.
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