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Exchange 2003 to 2010 Migration Questions

Posted on 2014-11-11
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Last Modified: 2014-11-14
I am getting ready to migrated 2003 to 2010 Exchange and I have a few basic questions.
•      Once I add the new Exchange 2010 Server (without any mailboxes being migrated yet), which server should incoming     email point to?
•      How will existing Outlook clients get directed or pointed to the new server?
•      How can “owa.company.com/active-sync devices” continue to operate after a mailbox is migrated? Does this mean I have to migrate everyone at once, then repoint the address translation to the new server?

Thank you!
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Question by:AntExpert
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by:it_saige
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by:AntExpert
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I have purchased a guide, and there is plenty of information on the Internet I realize, but I was hoping that someone who understands the process, could give me a couple quick answers on how the process would work in a migration scenario (based on the questions I am asking of course).
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by:it_saige
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Well to answer:

1.  I generally, shift the incoming mail responsibility to the new server.
2.  Existing outlook clients get proxied from one server to the other.  In a nutshell, if the user mailbox is on EX2010, then the request goes to EX2010.  If the user mailbox is on EX2003, then the request get's proxied to EX2003 using the legacy hostname.
3.  Again in a nutshell, ActiveSync requests are proxied to the server in the same way outlook requests are.

-saige-
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by:AntExpert
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So by "gets proxied", does that mean that communications are handled by the Exchange servers over the connector that is setup between the 2 servers, and it is transparent (or does not matter) to the Oulook client  where the mailbox resides?
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by:it_saige
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Correct.  The 2010 server will handle the requests and proxy them to the legacy server (2003 in this case) if the request is not meant for the 2010 server.  The exception is OWA, which gets redirected.

http://blogs.technet.com/b/mbaher/archive/2009/12/17/exchange-2010-proxy-or-redirect.aspx

-saige-
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by:AntExpert
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ok, so when the legacy server is finally removed, the existing Outlook clients will repoint themselves to the new 2010 server through Autodiscovery I assume? (in which case will need to be properly configured or email will stop working?)
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When you have the coexistence configured, everything is actually already in place (autodiscover and all your primary DNS records should be pointing at the new server, legacy is the only DNS record pointing at the old server).  So when you are ready to remove the 2003 server, you only have to move the user mailboxes, public folders and address book generating responsibility to the new server (save a couple of other items I may have forgotten).  Moving the users to the new server will take care of outlook re-pointing itself so long as the old server is still accessible when the clients log into outlook after their mailbox has been moved.

-saige-
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by:Adam Farage
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by:VB ITS
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Before you do any mailbox moves from Exchange 2003 to Exchange 2010, I would create a test account with its mailbox on the Exchange 2010 server first and test both internal and external email delivery. The reason for this is that sometimes the routing group connector that gets created automatically during the Exchange 2010 install won't route emails properly between the two servers and will need to be recreated.

There's also a few other small things such as enabling the default Receive Connector on the 2010 server to allow anonymous users access to it otherwise you won't be able to receive external emails. Microsoft do this because they recommend using an Edge Transport server in the DMZ to accept external emails, however not everyone has the resources to do this.
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by:hecgomrec
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To answer your questions:

1.  As soon as you finish the installation and settings your new 2010 is ready to take control.  This will take place as soon as you replace your DNS and firewall settings (MX, A records and forwarding)

2. Outlook clients will only need to change the server name after their mailbox is migrated to the 2010.

3. Those are services, once you start them in your new 2010 they will get to the required mailbox as usual.  Again, the DNS settings will do the trick here.

You Actually don't need to migrate everyone in one step... you can even take weeks to do it.  I did not stay long there as I moved very fast to 2013.

If you have any problems with mail flow once you have migrated your first mailbox, just reverse the mailbox back to its 2003 and if necessary your DNS and firewall settings.  Review the steps again and try to find where you went wrong.

Hints:
Prepare your SSL to match 2010 requirements.
Your server name should match external and internal (ex.: mail.yourdomain.org).  
IMAP & POP services doesn't start automatically so if you need them make sure you start them at make them start automatically.
When migrating the mailboxes users will loose access to their mailbox about after 40% of starting the process.

Here is a link with a step by step I use:

http://www.petenetlive.com/KB/Article/0000234.htm
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by:AntExpert
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Thanks a lot guys,  2 last questions if you don't mind:
So bringing up a new Exchange 2010 Server into the environment should not interfere with the current mail flow? I have read that the autodiscover feature of 2010 could cause problems? (this is my main concern, I can always work with test accounts from this point).
Secondly, any advice if my database is currently 200 GB?
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by:hecgomrec
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I did not enable autodiscover on 2010... it is by default on 2013 though!!

Your DB is 200GB... have a bigger disk and enable circular logging to prevent your logs to get big.  If possible, create more than one database and try to balance heavy emailers with low ones.
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by:Adam Farage
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AntExpert:

So bringing up a new Exchange 2010 Server into the environment should not interfere with the current mail flow

Not until you add them to the current Send connector :) Mail transportation between Exchange is done through the intra-org connector (which is not visible in the GUI, only powershell) along with a Receive connector with the "Exchange Servers" permission group. With that said I would not be concerned about mail flow when you introduce a new Exchange server, but remember you do need to cut it over eventually to the new Exchange 2010 or 2013 server (which is basically opening the send connector, adding the servers in as a source and being done with it).

I have read that the autodiscover feature of 2010 could cause problems? (this is my main concern, I can always work with test accounts from this point)

Exchange 2010 autodiscover is turned on by default, and should be pointed to the Exchange 2010 CAS. Although External autodiscover is easy as cake (setup a DNS A record for autodiscover.company.com and point it to the IP of the CAS, or the NAT to the IP of the CAS) you need to make some changes internally to make sure this works.

Essentially you would need to edit the SCP (Service Connection Point) to point from the server FQDN to a common name that will be within a certificate (such as autodiscover.company.com). You can set this throughout the environment by using the following command (note: this will only apply to Exchange 2007 above, Exchange 2003 doesnt use this):

Get-ClientAccessServer | Set-ClientAccessServer -AutoDiscoverServiceInternalUri https://autodiscover.company.com/autodiscover/autodiscover.xml

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Once you do this set an Internal A record within DNS to point autodiscover.company.com to the CAS for Exchange 2010 and you are done. Easy peasy, but besides that make sure you have a valid SSL certificate with the name autodiscover (and your OWA namespace, and legacy namespace for Exchange 2003) on there. A UC / SAN certificate is not that expensive (about 60 bucks) and will save the headaches when you migrate public folders over :)

Secondly, any advice if my database is currently 200 GB?

In theory a database can reach the size of 16TB on a spanned volume (for Exchange 2010 +), but the recommendation is as follows by Microsoft:

- A database without a DAG copy is going to be 250GB maximum size recommended
- A database with a DAG copy is going to be 2TB maximum size recommended

The reason for these numbers is due to the recovery time from backup. I would recommend using a VSS enabled backup instead of turning circular logging on, which should flush out the committed logs.
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by:VB ITS
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I would recommend using a VSS enabled backup instead of turning circular logging on, which should flush out the committed logs.
I agree, don't use circular logging unless disk space is an issue. Use an Exchange VSS aware backup program as Adam mentions above as it will truncate your log files.

As for the size of your database, I would factor in a growth rate of anywhere between 20%-50% (sometimes more) after you migrate to 2010. This is due to a number of factors, namely due to no more Single Instance Storage, larger default retention quotas and mailbox size limits, as well as log file growth.

If this or disk space is a concern for you then I would recommend using Outlook's AutoArchive function to reduce the size of the mailboxes before you start migrating them. You can even use GPOs to force Outlook to AutoArchive.
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Not to beat a dead horse. But I agree with VB ITS and Adam...  Circular logging should not be used just to save disk space.

The idea here we want to reinforce is that when you are performing VSS backups that rely on the transaction logs, make sure that your normal run state is with circular logging turned off. If you have a reason to turn circular logging on when utilizing VSS incremental backups that rely on the transaction log files, remember to turn it back off as soon as reasonable, and understand that while circular logging is on that your incremental backups will fail to complete as expected!

Source

-saige-
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by:AntExpert
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Is AutoDiscover necessary for 2010 functionality? I am asking because I was thinking of adding the certs, dns, records, etc. after I have it up and going.

Since my database is 200 GB right now, I should definitely divide it into a few 150GB databases I am assuming?
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AutoDiscover is not necassary, it is a convenience.  But after about your 3rd or 4th call because someone needs to have all the relevant information in order to allow their phone to ActiveSync with Exchange, you will wish you had added AutoDiscover.

-saige-
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Is AutoDiscover necessary for 2010 functionality? I am asking because I was thinking of adding the certs, dns, records, etc. after I have it up and going.

Open in new window

As it_saige has said above, it's not necessary for Exchange to work. Your plan above will be fine.
Since my database is 200 GB right now, I should definitely divide it into a few 150GB databases I am assuming?
Although Exchange 2010 databases have a default size limit of 1TB, it's not generally recommended for a database in a smaller environment to be more than 150GB-200GB in size due to the amount of time it will take to perform any recovery operations.

So yes, either look at multiple databases or implement some sort of archiving policy to reduce the size of your existing database.
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by:AntExpert
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Guys, thanks for all your excellent suggestions. This helps me to understand what I'm reading.
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