Setting up new Exchange 2013 email server in house. Is there an industry checklist?

Posted on 2014-07-15
Last Modified: 2014-11-12

I am moving our email from gmail hosted to an in house Exchange 2013 standard. This will be my first Exchange build ground up and I am searching for some kind of step check list to have a smooth transition or any tips. We are putting Exchange on the Domain Controller which acts as a file and AD server. It is a 2008 R2 server. Any guidance would be much appreciated.
Question by:JRome225
    LVL 22

    Accepted Solution

    Here are some best practices:

    Here is an Exchange 2013 step by step guide:

    I would recommend you consider having the Exchange Box on its own, rather than integrated with your DC / File Server.

    Hope this helps!


    LVL 9

    Expert Comment

    Agreed.  Exchange does Exchange.  Never give it another job unless you are trying to make weekend work for yourself.  No DCs, No Fileserver, No other apps.  This is a big step and a perfect time to virtualize things if not there already.

    Exchange 2013 on VMWare guide:
    LVL 1

    Author Comment

    I totally agree with virtualizing but that's not an option at this point. My boss said put it on the DC/Fileserver/timeclock/AD/DNS server. It's a small business with only 10 mailboxes needed. They have to be transferred from Google mail to Exchange. What is the process for this regarding PST's and transferring? Also what settings need to be configured on the DC for DNS and AD for that matter? We have 3TB's free so space isn't an issue.
    LVL 9

    Expert Comment

    Bad idea.  For that few users I would recommend hosted exchange with Rackspace, Microsoft, GoDaddy, etc. as opposed to adding one more egg to this basket.

    Exchange requires a lot of memory on its own.  Depending on your server specs, you will most likely see a tremendous hit on other processes.  What kind of specs does this box have?
    LVL 1

    Author Comment

    12GB on a Xeon.

    Im at the point now of setting the internal DNS records. Since my local domain is different than the mail domain, how and where should I put the CName and how to. For instance the local domain is and the mail domain is And are there any ports that need to be opened for exchange to work on the router?

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