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Demoting an Exchange server from a DC

Situation:

Upgrading 2003 network to 208 R2 with Exchange 2010.

Have built two 2008 R2 servers as DCs.

Still have in operation a 2003 server with Exchange 2003 and a fourth machine still at Server 2003.  Both are DCs.

The server now running Exchange 2003 is going away as soon as I bring up a new machine with Exchange 2010.

Function level of the domain (single forest BTW) is 2003.

Exchange 2010 installer wants the function level to be 2008.  But I can't raise the functional level until the two 2003 servers are upped to 2008.  I can up the non-Exchange machine from 2003 to 2008;  no prob.   But I don't want to (and as I understand it, can't anyway), up the Exchange machine from Server 2003 to 2008.  As said already, it is going away.

Or am I mistaken about the 4th Sentence in the preceding paragraph?  Can I up Server 2003 to 2008 R2 on the Exchange machine?  (That it, Is it just Exchange that cannot be in-place upgraded?)  If so, any particular pitfalls?

So, that's the situation, here's the question, or rather, questions:

Is my way out of this impass to make the Exchange machine (running Server 2003 and Exchange 2003) into a member server?  That is, make it no longer a DC?   Is DCPROMO the tool to do this?  Will I still have all the functionality I have on this machine in Users and Computers for creating users and contacts, or will I have to add that back somehow?
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Ronald Hicks
Asked:
Ronald Hicks
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3 Solutions
 
Darius GhassemCommented:
Here is the problem once an Exchange server is a Domain Controller you shouldn't demote the Exchange server

Exchange 2010 can be on 2003 AD I don't see an issue here

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ff728623.aspx
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Larry LarmeuManaging DirectorCommented:
Exchange 2010 definitely runs on 2003 level AD.
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kdgoodknechtCommented:
Exchange 2010 will install in a a Windows Server 2003 Functional level domain, IIRC Exchange 2010 Requires only to have Windows 2000 Functional level, it cannot be in Windows 2000 mixed (No NT4 DCs)
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Larry LarmeuManaging DirectorCommented:
Exchange 2010 requires 2003 or above.
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Ronald HicksAuthor Commented:
Hmmm.  I think I misread the problem.  Must find glasses.  I am at function level 2003, and that is all the Exchange Deployment Wizard is asking for.  So, my mistake.

However, it says I am in Mixed mode and have to be in Native.  Where's that setting please?
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Larry LarmeuManaging DirectorCommented:
OK that is the Exchange functional level not the Active Directory one.

To convert from mixed mode to native mode in Exchange

1.
Open Exchange System Manager.

2.
In the console tree, right-click the organization that you want to switch to native mode, and then click Properties.

3.
In <Organization Name> Properties, under Change operation mode, click Change Mode.

4.
In the warning dialog box, click Yes if you are sure that you want to permanently switch to native mode. Click Apply to accept your new Exchange mode.

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Ronald HicksAuthor Commented:
I think I see the problem and it is different from any previous comments.  The Exchange Pre-installation Analyzer gen'd a CSV file with the followng info about OSs and DC.

It identified 2 machines as  running Unknown versions of Windows, saying further "The computer object may be damaged or missing."  One of these 2 machines died two months ago.  It doesn't list in Users and Computers, and I have no idea where the Analyzer is picking it up from.  The other machine is the very one that I am trying to install Exchange on, and on which I installed Server 2008 R2 last week.  It  orrectly identified the OS running on my cureent Exchange server and the other 2003 DC.  It made no mention of the two new servers running 2008 R2 already.

So, I think it things it is in mixed mode because of the phantom machine and because of something wrong with the new2008 R2 machine that I'm trying to install Exchange on.  To reiterate, I did not make this machine a DC.

Further suggestion much appreciated.
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kdgoodknechtCommented:
You need to do a metadata cleanup to remove any DCs that have died without a dcpromo to remove AD from it. http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;216498
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Ronald HicksAuthor Commented:
Thanks kdgoodknecht.  The article cautions that it might not apply to the version of Windows with which I am logged on to read it.  I am logged on to a 2008 R2 machine.  Should I proceed?  Or is there another article for 2008 R2
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kdgoodknechtCommented:
It is the same process for all Active Directory Domains. This is a function of ntdsutil.exe, which may be different in different OS's, but the commands are the same.
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Ronald HicksAuthor Commented:
I think I'm over these hurdles.  Many thanks.  (There might be more though.)
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Ronald HicksAuthor Commented:
The metadata cleanup was what I really needed, and I didn't even know it!!!   Many thanks.
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