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Migrate SBS 2003 to Windows Standard 2012 with Exchange 2013

I have a single SBS 2003 32bit Server.  I need to migrate into two Windows 2012 esxi 5.1 VMs as follows:

Server 1 - Windows 2012 Domain Controller

Server 2 -  Windows 2012 Standard server (non DC) running Exchange 2013

My main confusion is the adprep step since it appears this has been changed for Win 2012 and there is no adprep32.

I will be happy to provide more detail id needed.

Thanks for your help!
SBSWindows Server 2012Exchange

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8/22/2022 - Mon
Peter Hutchison

You can install Windows 2012, join it to your existing 2003 domain and using a Doamin Admin and Schema Admin account you can then run adprep to update the schema and domain ready for your 2012 DC.

I assume you run adprep from the new 2012 machine and it will automatically update the schema on on the SBS 2003 computer.  Is this correct?

Or would you prefer letting the wizard that adds the DC role do the adprep for you?  Is this safe?  Somehow it would seem somewhat more comforting to run separately but not sure.
Cliff Galiher

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I actually thought both were very helpful.  The added comment regarding coexistence becoming available in a future release was an additional help.  I do want to thank both of you because each was very helpful.

I never would have expected Microsoft to release Exchange 2013 without the ability to co-exist with earlier releases (as in Exch 2003 with Exch 2010).  That would have blind-sighted me.

Thanks again!
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William Peck

I'm planning the exact same "migration".  How much time can I expect this entire process to take?  I'm planning on hiring a vendor to complete this and need to have a ballpark time range.  Thanks

I had 22 mailboxes (about 50 GB total).  Instead of Windows 2012/Exchange 2013, I went with Windows 2008R2/Exchange 2010 due to Outlook 2003 not being compatible with Exchange 2013 and also the fact that you cannot run both Exchange 2003 and Exchange 2013 in a coexistense relationship w/ routing groups.    I like running both together for awhile because it takes the heat off of having to complete the whole process over a single weekend.

The exchange portion took me over 20 hours but that is because I like to go real slow and test a lot at different stages.  I also had Outlook 2003 / Exchange 2010 performance issues I had to attempt to mitigate (known compatibility problems - they will be upgrading workstations and Office sometime during the next year but not real soon).  If you have Outlook 2007 or better, it works MUCH BETTER with Exchange 2010 and also Exchange 2013.

Though I have installed the 2012 Domain Controller and turned it into a file server, I have not actually moved the shares over to it yet.  I would expect the same 20 hours because of having rework/re-run/monitor the vm backups and because I also like to tke these things slow and test a lot between stages.

I hope this helps!