Move Exchange 2007 SP3 on Server 2003 R2 to new hardware with newer OS.

I've been looking all over for the easiest way to move our install of Exchange 2007 SP3 on old hardware running Server 2003 R2 to new hardware running Server 2008 R2 or Server 2012 R2. I have two questions.  Should I go to Server 2008 R2 or should I take it to Server 2012 R2? Can anyone recommend some HOWTO or documentation that will outline what I need to do?

Our present exchange server is accessed by Outlook 2010, OWA and various smartphone. It is not a deal breaker but I would prefer a method that would not require any client reconfiguration. Taking the server offline over a weekend can be done.

I appreciate any suggestions
rkirkleyAsked:
Who is Participating?

[Product update] Infrastructure Analysis Tool is now available with Business Accounts.Learn More

x
I wear a lot of hats...

"The solutions and answers provided on Experts Exchange have been extremely helpful to me over the last few years. I wear a lot of hats - Developer, Database Administrator, Help Desk, etc., so I know a lot of things but not a lot about one thing. Experts Exchange gives me answers from people who do know a lot about one thing, in a easy to use platform." -Todd S.

Scott CSenior EngineerCommented:
I'd go with Server 2012 R2 and Exchange 2013.  

2007 and 2013 can co-exist.  Then simply migrate the users to Exchange 2013 and decommission 2007.

Here's a complete blog with step-by-step instructions.

http://blogs.technet.com/b/meamcs/archive/2013/07/25/part-1-step-by-step-exchange-2007-to-2013-migration.aspx

Doing it this way won't require taking the server down and should have little to no impact on your users.

You really need to get off of Exchange 2007 as it is nearing end of life.
rkirkleyAuthor Commented:
Thanks, I know it would make sense to go to Exchange 2013 but we are not going to buy anything at this time. I just need to get our present Exchange off of Server 2003. When we leave 2007 it will probably be to some hosted solution such as 365.
Scott CSenior EngineerCommented:
Fair enough.

Then you will need to use Windows Server 2008 R2 as Exchange 2007 is not supported on Server 2012.

Just install a separate one as an extra server, then configure it, move all mailboxes etc.  Test.   If everything works fine and then remove the old Exchange server.  Still little to no impact on users.

Here is the supportability matrix.

https://technet.microsoft.com/library/ff728623(v=exchg.150).aspx

Experts Exchange Solution brought to you by

Your issues matter to us.

Facing a tech roadblock? Get the help and guidance you need from experienced professionals who care. Ask your question anytime, anywhere, with no hassle.

Start your 7-day free trial
Big Business Goals? Which KPIs Will Help You

The most successful MSPs rely on metrics – known as key performance indicators (KPIs) – for making informed decisions that help their businesses thrive, rather than just survive. This eBook provides an overview of the most important KPIs used by top MSPs.

rkirkleyAuthor Commented:
This seems to be the most recommended method and is what I will most likely do. I just have one concern. I use the FQDN of my present server for accessing OWA and for smart phone configurations. When I add a new server it will require a different name. What is the best way to handle this name change so that all the clients can connect?
Scott CSenior EngineerCommented:
The best way to do this is to set OWA to use something like https://mail.company.com/owa.

That way no matter what the server name is, they don't have to use a different address.

Here's a blog on configuring OWA in Exchange 2007

http://exchangeserverpro.com/configuring-the-exchange-server-2007-client-access-server/
rkirkleyAuthor Commented:
Thanks,

This is what I need.
It's more than this solution.Get answers and train to solve all your tech problems - anytime, anywhere.Try it for free Edge Out The Competitionfor your dream job with proven skills and certifications.Get started today Stand Outas the employee with proven skills.Start learning today for free Move Your Career Forwardwith certification training in the latest technologies.Start your trial today
Exchange

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.