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Migration from Windows Server 2003 R2 AD to Windows Server 2012 R2 AD with Exchange 2007 in the same domain.

Posted on 2014-11-26
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Last Modified: 2014-12-01
I currently have an old Windows Server 2003 R2 domain controller, as well as a second server running Windows Server 2003 R2 64-bit hosting Exchange Server 2007.  I have finally convinced the customer that it is time to migrate to a new server hardware and software environment.  I have plenty of documentation on the Active Directory migration from 2003 R2 to 2012 R2, and it seems pretty straight-forward (with any "gotchas" accounted for).  However, the existing Exchange 2007 server in the mix is troubling.  I'd like to upgrade that to Exchange 2013 on a 2012 virtual guest machine, but I'm not sure of the order of migration, or if Exchange 2007 will have to exist for a short time in a 2012 environment before being migrated to Exchange 2013 on a new server.  There is also the possibility that the customer will need to hold off on the Exchange portion of the migration/upgrade for several months, which will necessitate running Exchange 2007 on the same server after the 2012 R2 domain controller migration.

Are these two scenarios even possible "compatibility-wise", and if so, what are the migration steps?  Any help folks can give me would be greatly appreciated!
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Question by:rgmckenz
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Gareth Gudger earned 500 total points
ID: 40468535
I highly recommend reviewing the Exchange Supportability Matrix.
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ff728623(v=exchg.150).aspx

Assuming your Exchange 2007 server is at Service Pack 3 with the latest Rollup, it can support a 2012 R2 domain controller. However! Big however! The domain and forest functional levels can only go to 2012 RTM (not R2).

Hope that helps. Its a good document. I highly recommend it!
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by:rgmckenz
ID: 40473501
Gareth,

Thank you - the matrix was very helpful.  I also found a couple of excellent step-by-step documents that describe the process in detail.  Over the weekend, I was able to run the Service Pack 3 update for Exchange 2007 and Roll-up 14, plus other updates to get the Exchange server ready.  I'll be careful to only raise the domain and forest functional levels to 2012 RTM, at least until I can finally update their Exchange server.  I'll also be upgrading a few other AD servers at some remote facilities, but the process should be smooth (knock on wood).

Appreciate the assistance and advice.  Have a great day!
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by:Gareth Gudger
ID: 40473955
Glad to help!
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