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Windows 2008 R2 with Exchange 2010 Problem

Muhajreen
Muhajreen used Ask the Experts™
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Hello experts,

I have an assembled server with Core i7 CPU, 16GB DDR3 and Intel mainboard. It's running Exchange server 2010 SP1 with Windows server 2008 R2. This server is also a one of two DCs in the environment.

The server was working well for about a year. But in the last few days, it became rebooting unexpectedly.

I am not satisfied with the Windows DVD which was used to build the server from the beginning. Now I have a new one.

What shall I do now? Shall I try to upgrade Windows using the new DVD? Or is it possible to re-format it and start installing Windows and Exchange from scratch? What about restoring Exchange to it's previous state in this case?
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Technical Development Lead
Commented:
Firstly you should NEVER install exchange on a DC!!

That said, you should go for building a new server, even if it is a virtual machine on a PC somewhere, install exchange 2010 on it, migrate ALL your mail boxes and roles from your dodgy exchange server onto this one and then uninstall exchange from your old one.

Now once thats sorted and running properly, transfer any and all fsmo roles from your dodgy DC to the existing good one, make sure good one is a global catalog server, doing DHCP and DNS for all your domain and then DCPROMO it to demote the AD role off.

Now, after your satisfied that turning it off makes no difference to your domain, you can flatten this server and start to build it from scratch.

I would suguest that you ONLY have exchange on it and find another box to run as a second DC.

Commented:
Yes as per Microsoft recommendation not to install Exchange on DC

Author

Commented:
Thanks for the post.

As I read in so many sites, it's ( supported but not recommended) to install Exchange on a DC, that's why I have made that many times.

I will separate DC and exchange on two different Hyper-V virtual machines, I think that will cover our need in a safe scenario.

I will use a temp server, build two virtual machines on it, make one of them a DC, make the other an Exchange, transfer FSMO roles, migrate all mailboxes, uninstall Exchange from the dodgy server, then demote it, format the server, setup Hyper-V on it, and move the two virtual machines back to it.

1. Is this scenario ok?
2. What about running Exchange on a virtual machine? I have never done before.
Neil RussellTechnical Development Lead

Commented:
Of course your first consideration should be why the reboots?

Does it Bluescreen and give you the error? Knowing these codes might help to identify why. Can you post? And eventlog info just prior to the reboot? Show anything?
Neil RussellTechnical Development Lead

Commented:
Your scenario is perfect and yes exchange runs fine in a VM so long as the server has enough resources.

What is the spec of the server you will run Hyper-V on?

Commented:
Yes Microsoft support Both Hyperv and Vmware for Exchange 2010

Author

Commented:
It will be the same server after formatting it.

Intel Desktop Core i7 3.4GHz, 16GB DDR3, 2x2TB HDDs running in a hardware RAID1 array which is built in to the Intel DH67BL motherboard.

The temp server will have less resources.

There is no blue screen, yesterday I was working remotely, modifying some user accounts in the directory, and suddenly the server went down, I checked locally, and found it rebooting each time it tries to start windows. Then I disconnected one of the two HDDs to get rid of RAID problems, after that the server booted up, and I logged on , but after few minutes it rebooted again.

Now I moved the server to another location, so it's unable to communicate with the old DC, and I am performing a full windows backup now. I am afraid that the problem was occurring when it was trying to synchronize with the other DC.

Author

Commented:
For full backup, it's running consistency check for application Exchange since an hour. Is this normal?
Neil RussellTechnical Development Lead

Commented:
Depending on the size of your exchange setup I have known it take 48 hours to do one.....