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Server 2012 R2 with Exchange 2013 sp1 in hyper v

Posted on 2014-03-22
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2014-11-12
Hi All

I am very new to Server 2012 as we have always used SBS (2003,2008,2011). What I wanted to find out is,

I am going to setup a Dual Xeon, 32 Gb Ram server 2012 R2. This will be our domain controller running active directory, DHCP and DNS. I am then going to install the hyper v role and install a copy of Server 2012 R2 in the hyper v as a member server. On this server I want to install Exchange 2013 sp1. It will support +-15 users for exchange.

Will this work and what should I be looking out for? What do I do for backups on the hyper v. If Exchange dies or the Hyper v I want to be able to get it running as soon as possible.

Sorry very new to this might sound simple to some, but got me having nightmares!!!
Question by:Greglsh
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LVL 59

Accepted Solution

Cliff Galiher earned 750 total points
ID: 39947863
First, don't install other roles or LOB apps alongside hyper-v. Instead of installing AD, Dhcp, and hyper-v, it'll be better to install JUST Hyper-v. Then instead of one VM, install two. One VM for AD, DHCP, etc, and the other for exchange.

Will it work? Yes. What should you look out for? Too long to list, like any server product there are a lot of options. What do you do for backups? Like antivirus products, there are a lot of options. And plenty of opinions. Grab trials and pick one with the combination of features and price that fits YOUR needs and style.
LVL 23

Expert Comment

by:Suliman Abu Kharroub
ID: 39947865
If it will host less than 50 mailboxes, have a look to outlook.com free mail hosting :


You can create your company custom URLs.

If you are going to do exchange on premises, it is better to have it on a separate physical or virtual box. however the setup that mentioned in the question will work.

Author Comment

ID: 39947867
Thanks Cliff

I have been reading about the Hyper v and 2 virtual machines. What worried me about this is the lack of gui. I have no idea on supporting this with command lines.

Would my way of doing it be a problem, Server 2012 with dhcp, dns, ect with Hyper v and exchange in hyper v. What would the down side be with this type of setup?
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LVL 59

Expert Comment

by:Cliff Galiher
ID: 39947871
Server standard comes with 1+2 virtualization rights. So my suggested setup only takes one license and doesn't force you to manage from the command line. Your setup requires two licenses because installing AD on the physical OS negates ALL virtualization rights. And there are still other drawbacks involving memory management, network issues, and others. ALWAYS avoid other roles and LOB apps in a Hyper-V host.

Author Comment

ID: 39947879
So Cliff

how would I go about this in a gui enviroment. Do I load Server 2012 hyper visor then what? All I have read is the guys saying you have to administer the server through powershell or command lines. Not my cup of tea.
LVL 38

Expert Comment

ID: 39947918
Everything is manageable through GUI as far as concerned to Hyper-V 2012 \ 2012 R2

PowerShell is required to manage Exchange 2013 setup, though it is also having GUI (Web based interface) , but some functions do require PowerShell

Author Comment

ID: 39947926
Lets look at this another way.

Can you install Exchange 2013 sp1 directly on the Server 2012 R2 domain controller without any virtulization? What are the problems with this?
LVL 23

Expert Comment

by:Suliman Abu Kharroub
ID: 39947934
Alot of problems and not a supported setup to ad and exchange on the same box.
LVL 59

Expert Comment

by:Cliff Galiher
ID: 39948033
Install server 201132. You have a GUI. Enable the Hyper-V role. You still have a GUI. create VMs using the GUI.

Expert Comment

ID: 39948095
For backup - I can recommend Veam Backup for backing up virtual machines.
LVL 74

Assisted Solution

by:Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy
Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy earned 750 total points
ID: 39948235
There is some fairly good guidance for this provided by Microsoft.

For a start, take a look at the "Deploy Windows Server 2012 Essentials and Exchange Server in a virtualized environment" section in this blog post:

Since you only have 15 users, you really should consider using Server 2012 Essentials.  There are some great built-in management tools and it fully integrates with either Exchange 2013 or Office 365.

All that being said... if you don't have any experience with deploying virtual servers you should really consider hiring a qualified consultant to do the task.  Knowing how to properly configure the networking, and allocating resources to the machines will ensure that your environment runs properly.

You should also be aware that deploying an on-premise Exchange server for your size organization will cost you THOUSANDS of dollars more than using Office 365.  Not only in Hardware, Licensing and deployment costs, but also the continued maintenance and upkeep.  

If you chose Server 2012 Essentials + Office 365 you do not need any Server CALS or Exchange CALS -- licensing alone will be about $3,000.00 less --- not an insignificant amount.


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