Setting up a DAG in Exchnage 2013. Couple of questions about this...

I have a couple of questions regarding setting up a DAG in Exch 2013..
First of all when I setup the second server for the DAG, it is going to be at a remote site different from the main exch server.
So can I create the DAG during production time and add the prod server to the new DAG without any outage happening to the prod exch server?
Second, when I setup the remote second exch server for the DAG, do I setup the OWA url the same as the production server?
I am guessing I would setup the remote second exch server the exact same way as the production with a different name of course..
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vmichAsked:
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SysguysCommented:
Yes DAG is different from cluster its just a multiple copies of database in different server,you have to just enable DAG and add member server for DAG.
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vmichAuthor Commented:
So I am confused by your answers to my questions..
So I can setup the DAG during production without affecting the main server and users and then I setup the OWA on the remote second server the same as the main server but with the server having a different name of course?
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Will SzymkowskiSenior Solution ArchitectCommented:
Depending on how large your current production exchange databases are will determine this. Typically I would do this after business hours because when you add the other member to the DAG and setup passive copies, if you have a lot of data to transfer this might saturate your network and create poor performance for Exchange and anything else that might be running over the same network.

Based on your second question, when you have A CAS server in a non-internet facing site you need to set the ExternalURL as $null and set the internalURL as https://server.domain.com/owa. Or if you have setup split DNS you can configure the internalURL like https://mail.domain.com/owa.

Because OWA will be in different sites you will not require a load balancer because you cannot load balance CAS between AD Sites.

Will.
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SysguysCommented:
Do you mean you already have an exchange 2013 mailbox server running and you wish to create an member a DAG in remote site?

Also you can have mutliple CAS server in your environment,of course the server name will be different when the users connects to exchange server ,when they don't find a CAS server the SCP will redirect to other CAS server ,you you need to have an working active directory server in remote site also.
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vmichAuthor Commented:
Will,
The dbs is only about 90GB, but I can setup the DAG and add the servers in but hold off on starting the dbs copies until fater hours correct?
No we don't have spilt dns setup so if the main server say would go down and the remote server does not have the same ext url. how would the users be able to get to owa and how would their mobile devices still get email?
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vmichAuthor Commented:
Will,
Also the remote site is on a different subnet but it is part of the same domain.
So when I do the exch 2013 install for the remote server, do I select non-internet facing?
If there is a good step by stpe doc for exch 2013 and setting up the DAG, let me know.
Thanks
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Will SzymkowskiSenior Solution ArchitectCommented:
You can add the DAG member to the DAG but I would hold off until after hours to setup the Passive copies. you only use ExternalURL on CAS servers that are in an Internet-facing AD Site. If your CAS/Mailbox server goes down in your internet facing site then the Passive copies will be active in the non-internet facing site Exchange server.

At that point Autodiscover (internally) will connect your users to their mailboxes on the Exchange server in the non-internet site. However, because this site is not internet facing people externally will not be able to receive email via activesync and OWA will not work.

If you want the second site to have this then you need to have a dedicated internet connection at this site as well.

Will.
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vmichAuthor Commented:
So we do have internet access at the second site for the second server, so I should set it up as internet facing also correct?
Also then I would setup the ext url the same as the main server. Am I correct on that also or not?
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Will SzymkowskiSenior Solution ArchitectCommented:
It depends on how you want to configure your external DNS. If this Exchange server is going to host Active Copies and you want people to be able to access it from the Outside when the Primary Site is up then you need to do something like below...

Site1 = 19.38.18.1 - mail.domain.com

Site2 = 10.29.2.19 = mail2.domain.com

From there you would have 2 entries points for your users to access. Users in Site1 would use mail and users in site2 would use mail2.

If you only want to use 1 DNS record for mail.domain.com then all traffic would go through Site1 and in the event that Site1 is not reachable you change your external DNS to point to mail.domain.com for Site2. The thing you have to consider is that external DNS takes time to propagate on the internet.

So based on how you would configure your DNS determines what you set your ExternalURL's to on your CAS servers.

Will.
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vmichAuthor Commented:
Ok Will I think I got it now...
But just to run it past you one more time.. :)
So I am going to just have the main server be internet facing that way even if the dbs failover from the main server to the secondary, even though the main is still up, the users will still be able to get to their email via outlook or OWA correct?
Is it ok or best practice to just have the 1 server internet facing or does it not matter so much?
Thank Will
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Will SzymkowskiSenior Solution ArchitectCommented:
Well it is always good to have at least a couple sites internet facing so that if you have issues then you have another site to work with. However If your mailboxes fail over to the second site and CAS is still available in the main site then it will proxy the  connection to your the other CAS server in the secondary site and connect to your mailbox.

So the answer is yes if your CAS server is still online and access to the internet it will proxy the connections to the other Site.

Will.
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SysguysCommented:
Dear will,

Our users connect to cas nlb in primary site ,we have a cas in DR also and its internet facing when the primary site is down ,how will the request get automatically routed to the other site???
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vmichAuthor Commented:
Will,
If I want to have 2 CAS servers internet facing but don't want any active dbs on the second server, is this possible to setup that way if the main CAS goes down then the users cans till get to the email via outside?
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vmichAuthor Commented:
Will,
Ok I added the second exch 2013 server and now our emails for some reason when going out are going through this new server and not through the main exch server like they were before. Is there something I need to change on this new server?
I have both servers setup with CAS and Mailbox role because these will be in a DAG..
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vmichAuthor Commented:
Never mind I figured out what was going on...
Thanks
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vmichAuthor Commented:
setup 2 server dag
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