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Cannot Uninstall Exchange 2010

Posted on 2013-01-28
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Last Modified: 2013-02-10
Hi, everyone.  I am having trouble uninstalling Exchange 2010 from one of my 2 Exchange 2010 servers.  Both are installed with Windows Server 2008 R2 and both are Exchange version 14.2.247.5.  I have moved all databases off of the server I'm trying to uninstall, and am trying to go through Programs and Features in the Control Panel to uninstall.  When I click the Uninstall option on that screen, it brings me to a window entitled "Windows Exchange Server 2010 SP2 Upgrade" which is the introduction screen of a wizard.  When I click "Next", I get an error which is pictured in the attached file.  When I installed Exchange 2010 on this server, I changed the installation to the E drive instead of the C drive.  I can't figure out a way around this error.  I've also tried running Setup.exe from the Exchange 2010 DVD, and after I choose the language pack, and click Install MIcrosoft Exchange Server Upgrade, it gives me an error - "Exchange Server Setup Encountered an Error".  I've also tried running the command "setup.com /m:uninstall" from Exchange Powershell, and the output is
 "Welcome to Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 Unattended Setup

Preparing Exchange Setup

The following server roles will be upgraded
Languages
Hub Transport Role
Client Access Role
Mailbox Role
Management Tools
File exchangeserver.msi does not exist in specified directory C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\V14\bin.
Specified directory C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\V14\bin\Updates does not exist.

Exchange Server setup encountered an error."

Can anyone help me?

Thanks!
Exchange-error.JPG
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Question by:IT_Girl2
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Expert Comment

by:colinharris
ID: 38828535
If you go to "Program and Features" and try uninstalling exchange from there, does the same errors occur?

If the same happens, try downloading the latest exchange msi and running the uninstall through that.

Failing all that, could you rebuild the server and then ADSIedit out that server?

Ollie
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Author Comment

by:IT_Girl2
ID: 38829245
The screenshot I attached was taken by trying to go through Programs and Features in the control panel.  I am downloading the latest version the microsoft VLSC site now which is Exchange 2010 with SP1 included.  I'll try using that to uninstall next.  If that doesn't work, is there an article that explains how to ADSIedit an Exchange server out of an environment?  Thanks!
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Expert Comment

by:Simon Butler (Sembee)
ID: 38835007
Manually removing Exchange using adsiedit is not supported.

Do you have Exchange 2010 SP2 installed? If so, then use the same files if prompted to remove the server. The volume download site is out of date if it is only SP1.

If the uninstall still continues to fail, then use the DR method.
Trash the box, build a replacement with the same name and add to the domain. Then install Exchange from the command line using the /recoverserver switch. Once complete, remove using add/remove programs.

You must use the same version to install as you have at the moment. So if you are on SP1, then use SP1, if SP2, use SP2.

Simon.
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Author Comment

by:IT_Girl2
ID: 38845302
I am using SP2, and am having trouble downloading the outdated version anyway, so I'll just stop with that.  So, if I just re-format the server that I'm trying to uninstall, and install using the /recoverserver switch, it will bring Exchange back on that box?  I've never tried that.  Can I install it that way to a different drive, or does it need to be the same path?  Right now, I have the server configured with a raid 1 for the C drive, and a raid 5 for the E drive.  Exchange is installed on the E drive.  I am planning on installing it to the C drive this next time around.
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Assisted Solution

by:Simon Butler (Sembee)
Simon Butler (Sembee) earned 500 total points
ID: 38846555
The configuration ideally needs to be identical. If you wanted to change things around then I would suggest do a quick build (a VM for example) to install and remove server so that things are clean, then wipe the machine and do the build again, this time getting it exactly as you want. I don't like leaving recovered machines in production.

Simon.
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Accepted Solution

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IT_Girl2 earned 0 total points
ID: 38856948
I finally figured it out!  Here's what I did...

Reinstall Exchange 2010 SP2 (not sure this was really necessary)
Uninstall Rollup 5
Uninstall Rollup 4
Uninstalled Exchange 2010 from programs and features

Voila!

The moral of the story is to uninstall the updates for Exchange 2010 before trying to uninstall the Exchange 2010 program.  My next step, if that didn't work, was to try Sembee2's suggestion above, which I'm sure would have worked, but would have just been a lot more work.  Thankfully, it wan't necessary!  Thanks!
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Author Closing Comment

by:IT_Girl2
ID: 38872805
I figured out a way to get around the error, but Sembee2's solution would have worked as well.
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