exchange 2003 to 2010 and moving to datacenter

Greetings,

I am about to move from Exchange 2003 to 2010. they will co-exist for a time. I am still planning the move. However, a complication (at least to me) is that we plan to put the Exchange 2010 VM (vmware) at the datacenter about 100 miles or so away from the office. We are setting up a 50 MB point-to-point ethernet circuit (metro-e or e-line) from TW between the office and the datacenter.

What would be the most efficient way to move the mailboxes to the new 2010 server and also move the 2010 VM to the datacenter? Should I set up 2010 in the office, move everything from 2003, use SAN-to-SAN replication to get it over to the datacenter, then power on in the datacenter and power off in the office? If so, what would need to be done with the LAN and public static IP addresses once moved and powered on at the datacenter?

Thanks a lot. This may get involved with several more questions asked. Please feel free to tell me to ask another question so points can be properly awarded.
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king daddyAsked:
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akhalighiConnect With a Mentor Commented:
I did the same sort of migration.

for sure you need to do this once you have remote access to your data center.

Forget about migrating in LAN and moving the image to datacenter . it'll break that way. ( ip address change , domain controller issues , etc )

what I did and it was truly successful and transparent :

-I had a 10 MB link between my LAN and Data center - 100 users.  distance doesn't matter.
- Deployed a domain controller in data center
- Deployed exchange 2010 in data center on a VM ; co existing with 2003
- Migrated some mal boxes first ; checked performance and everything . looked normal .
- Migrated rest of the mail boxes + address book
- Migrated public folders
(Up to this point 2003 was still handling mail flow)

- Changed MX records so my 2010 handles exchange of emails .
- Still kept 2003 for some more days
- stopped 2003 services one day , let it be stopped for 2 weeks . made some small
adjustments .
- decommissioned 2003 .
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Its less risky to create the Exchange 2003 to Exchange 2010 Migration inhouse on your LAN, and then once you have successfully Finished Phase1 on the Project, move onto Phase2 replicate to DC.
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king daddyAuthor Commented:
thanks. I guess I could also move the 2003 VM to the new storage at the datacenter, fire it up there, and then migrate from 2003 to 2010. Is that feasible? Any reason not to do this remotely, so-to-speak?
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akhalighiCommented:
If you can virtualize and move 2003 to datacenter , that will be an option but really I had no issues with migrating over a 10MB link . how many users you've got ?
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king daddyAuthor Commented:
thanks akhalighi. I have about 65 users with about 450 GB in the databases. I also have a domain controller in the datacenter which has been there about 6 months and is replicating from the office DCs with no issues. All my machines are VMs, except one domain controller, just in case...so it wouldn't be that difficult to move it. However, if email has to be down for the move, that could take a while so I may just migrate per your plan above.

thanks again
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akhalighiConnect With a Mentor Commented:
I think your datacenter is using a different IP range , right ? if you move your VM ; it may work but your email system will be down for some time . also I really don't know what happens once you load it into the new environment . ( with all IP address change , different firewall. etc) , so be careful with that move.

My plan is totally transparent to users . but it has more steps .
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akhalighiCommented:
450GB for 65 users is too large though . ask you users to clean up and archive a lot before you do the migration . that helps a lot .
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king daddyAuthor Commented:
it is using a different IP. I like your plan though.

it is indeed too large! I am hoping to archive as much as possible.

thanks again.
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