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Running SBS 2008 as an Exchange Server only along with Server 2012 Essentails

Posted on 2015-02-24
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Last Modified: 2015-02-25
A company I know is currently run an SBS 2008 Server with 11 Workstations running WIndows 7.
The Server and Workstation are around 5 years old and they had a hard drive issue the other day. Thankfully, they are running Raid 5 over Three Hard drives so it is just a case of replacing the Hard Drive.

This, however, has got them thinking about replacing the Server.  I have looked into the options and I think Windows Server 2012 Essentials would be the best bet. However, I realise it does not come with Exchange as SBS does.

I have mentioned using other alternatives like Office 365 but they don't see the subscription model as cost effective as a in-house Exchange Server especially when they have a Server already doing this work and could even be used for this purpose.

Forgetting the argument that they could just continue as they are with the SBS 2008 server, I would like to ask if it is possible to run SBS 2008 as just an Exchange server along side Server 2012 Essentials and, if so, how?

I know the "How" bit might be too long for an answer here but if anybody has any links to reference material on this or any further suggestions as the best way to go forward, I would be very grateful.
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Question by:Markieboy1
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Expert Comment

by:Gaurav Singh
ID: 40627943
What applications do you want to configure on Windows 2012 server?
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Author Comment

by:Markieboy1
ID: 40628013
Thanks for your reply.

The answer is the 2012 Server will essentially be a file and Domain server. Folder redirection and backup of the workstations, general shared company folders, the master computer for a network version of Sage Accounts and that's about it.
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by:Gaurav Singh
ID: 40628055
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Expert Comment

by:Cliff Galiher
ID: 40628056
You cannot do what you want. Essentials is the spiritual successor to SBS and, as such, has the same licensing restrictions. You cannot have two SBS servers, two essentials servers, or two servers running a combination of SBS and essentials on the same domain.
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Author Comment

by:Markieboy1
ID: 40628194
Thanks for your answers.

What you be your recommendation(s) to replace the old SBS 2008 Server if on-site Exchange email were required?
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Cliff Galiher earned 2000 total points
ID: 40628221
2012 R2 standard. That entitles you to two VMs on a single two-processor server. One VM with the essentials role. The second VM running exchange 2013.

So your shopping list is basically:

1 server capable of virtualization with no more than two processors.
1 2012 R2 server standard license
1 exchange 2013 license
Windows 2012 CALs
Exchange 2013 CALs
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Expert Comment

by:it_saige
ID: 40628258
Agreed with Cliff.  Just ensure that on the physical server you install only the Hyper-V role.

-saige-
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Author Comment

by:Markieboy1
ID: 40628738
Thanks again for your help.

Is it possible to run Exchange on the Server 2012 standard edition or do you need to run separately on VM's / Servers.?

I haven't really touched the new Server OS's ( Since 2008 ) and all this Virtual stuff is new to me aswell!
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by:Cliff Galiher
ID: 40628780
You can run exchange on a physical server, sure. But then you are talking two server standard licenses. One for the DC and one for exchange. And you'd need two physical servers as well. Basically a fair bit more expensive. Which is fine if you don't mind the cost, but based on your comments regarding O365 being too expensive, it seemed like you were looking for ways to keep costs down.
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Author Comment

by:Markieboy1
ID: 40628824
Cheers Cliff,

So it isn't possible just to install and run it on Server 2012 Standard - along with the other roles -  in much the same way as was available on SBS?

It has to be run on a totally separate server whether physical or Virtual?
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Expert Comment

by:Cliff Galiher
ID: 40628834
The web services provided by the exchange role and the autodiscover, OWA, and Outlook Anywhere web services provided by exchange do not coexist well together. Additionally, running exchange on *any* domain controller, even without the essentials stuff, is contrary to recommended topologies, and generally speaking, bad things do happen to those who ignore this recommendation. So, in short, no. It would be a very unwise thing to attempt.
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by:it_saige
ID: 40628835
Not true.  As Cliff pointed out earlier, Windows Server 2012 Essentials is the spiritual successor to Small Business Server.  You can definitely run this as a standalone server.

Edit: Clarification - Essentials is the spiritual successor, however it does not natively include email services (Microsoft's anticipation that system administrators and/or bean-counters would rather use O365).  

Microsoft does provide a TID for integrating an On-Premise (means second server) Exchange 2013 with Windows Server 2012 Essentials though.  This is why the push for using one Physical with 2 VM's.

https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/jj200172.aspx

-saige-
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Author Comment

by:Markieboy1
ID: 40630143
Thanks for all your answers.

It certainly looks like Windows 2012 Standard and Exchange as a VM.

Now all I need to know is how to migrate it all from the SBS server but I think that is another question entirely.

Thanks again and the points go to Cliff as he came up with the original solution.

Thanks Again.
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