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Exchange 2013 Upgrade - 2007 / 2010 already in environment

Posted on 2014-02-24
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Last Modified: 2014-02-28
We recently started working with a client that has a 200 user Exchange 2007 environment.  In doing a discovery in their environment, I found that a VM in Hyper-V was created and Exchange 2010 was installed.  

Currently, the client wants to have Exchange 2013 installed into the environment.  In normal situations, I would run through the typical process to migrate from 2007 to 2013.  However, with the additional VM in the environment with Exchange 2010 installed, I'm a bit wary of this environment.  

In checking out the Exchange 2010 environment, there is no mail routing through the environment; in fact, the VM has been powered off.  However, in doing the Exchange Profile Analyzer, it did detect that the Exchange 2010 environment was enabled and it wanted it powered online in order to evaluate it.

My current thought is to do a straight uninstall of Exchange 2010 some evening and then verify all is working in relation to mail routing.  I don't see any issues with this, as I've done a thorough check to verify Exchange 2010 isn't doing anything, outside of the two mailboxes that the on-site admin created in the Exchange 2010 environment.

Do you think this is the correct route?  Just clean out 2010 and hope for the best on the upgrade?  Especially since they want to use the same VM for Exchange 2013.

A very strange situation, but I guess the on-site admin wanted to check out Exchange 2010 and installed an evaluation copy into the production environment.  Definitely not my first choice of options and I'm not overly thrilled about it.

Anyway, let me know if anyone has any insight on this.  If a straight uninstall of Exchange 2010, removing it/connectors/etc. from the environment would have any adverse effect on the Exchange 2007 environment and the installation of Exchange 2013 from there.  Thank you!
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Question by:JKowalke
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Simon Butler (Sembee) earned 500 total points
ID: 39882734
If the Exchange 2010 server is not doing anything, then removing it is going to be the best option. However you will have some system mailboxes on it which will stop it from being removed, which I don't think can be moved to Exchange 2007. Therefore you may have to install Exchange 2013 first, move the system/arbitration mailboxes to the new server and then remove Exchange 2010.

I would power it up first though, see what state it is in. If it will start all the services fine then you are probably ok. If not then you may have to recover it.

Simon.
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Expert Comment

by:hecgomrec
ID: 39886005
I will recommend you to try something totally different as for the lack of info in your question/comment.

Move everything to 2010... you only need SP3 to move to 2013.  On the other side, you did not mention... you will need Office at least 2007 as a client, but I will recommend 2010 to avoid problems... even with the latest updates.

The customer can stay with 2010 for a longer period and plan for the 2013 costs.  Exchange 2013 best scenario is with office 2013 but is could be expensive to move the whole environment to that point. Specially 200 users.

Also consider your actual and future versions.... the 2013 standard is only 5 databases  including public folders if you have them and Enterprise is 100.
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Author Closing Comment

by:JKowalke
ID: 39895743
This is what I did after exploring the environment and found the technician that had set it up had done a load of manual work to make sure there was no communication between the 2007 and 2010 environments.  From there, I removed the local OAB, removed the databases in ADSIEdit, uninstalled the Exchange 2010 software without affecting 2007 at all.  Removed the server from the domain and nixed the VM.  All the while, things ran perfectly in 2007.  I'm now in a position to setup 2013 and do an upgrade straight from 2007.  Thank you for the insight!
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