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Windows Thread, Advice: Upgrade Exchange 2007 to 2010 in Technical; What is the best way to do this without a load of admin work? We have: 1 physical server running ...
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    Gatt's Avatar
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    Advice: Upgrade Exchange 2007 to 2010

    What is the best way to do this without a load of admin work?
    We have: 1 physical server running exchange 2007 and we dont really have a spare server to install 2010 on and run both at the same time..

    I know you cant do an in place upgrade (for reasons best known only to MS!) so how can I backup all relevant info from 2007 (settings, mailboxes, etc), uninstall 2007 and then install 2010 and import the settings back in?

    Can 2007 be moved to a VM?
    Can 2010 be installed on a VM, migrate everything to that, then reinstall the 2007 box with 2010 and move the VM'd 2010 to the physical Server/

    Or am I best not bothering?

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    SYNACK's Avatar
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    Exchange 2010 will run fine on a VM depending on the load its under and the spec of the virtual server. Just make a new VM and install 2010 to that then migrate normally. This is probably the easiest route.

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    Gatt (11th April 2010)

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    Gatt's Avatar
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    Can I then "move" the new 2010 from the VM to a physical server by installing 2010 on the old 2007 server then uninstall from the VM?
    Dont really want ot run about 1000 Mailboxes on a VM...

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    SYNACK's Avatar
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    If you wanted to yes, you could then install it on a physical box and migrate it back. Exchange 2010 is vastly less IO hungry than 2007 and so unless you are going to be using the unified messaging components it should work fine in a VM for 1000 users. Give it 4CPUs and 8GB or more of RAM and it should be perfectly happy under Hyper-V or ESX. This would probably give you better disaster recovery options too.

    I am running on a physical box just to get around the max CPU count of 4 with the version of Hyper-V we have as I intend to use unified messaging which can be CPU heavy when processing voice messages into text.

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    Gatt (11th April 2010)

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    Gatt's Avatar
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    Thanks Synack - will look at the VM tomorrow and see if we can configure it...
    If not - I could turn the old Exchange server into a new VM and mvoe the VM'd EX2010 onto that ...

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    leco's Avatar
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    I was under the impression that a VM'd Exchange had to be run on a VM server that wasn't doing anything other than hosting VM's. So if you've only got one server then VM is not an option.

    But I might have got that wrong?

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    Theblacksheep's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by leco View Post
    I was under the impression that a VM'd Exchange had to be run on a VM server that wasn't doing anything other than hosting VM's. So if you've only got one server then VM is not an option.

    But I might have got that wrong?
    I think that comes from 'no stuff running on root OS', one of hyper-v's "features".

    Virtualization support restriction are somewhere around here:

    Exchange 2010 System Requirements: Exchange 2010 Help


    Key points:
    * 2:1 vCPU real ratio
    * No dynamic HDs
    * No UM in virtual (must be physical)
    * No snapshots
    * No Lun sharing
    * No 3rd party HA with DAGs
    * No systems running on root OS

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    leco (11th April 2010)

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    SYNACK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gatt View Post
    If not - I could turn the old Exchange server into a new VM and mvoe the VM'd EX2010 onto that ...
    It does look like Exchange 2007 supports visualization so you could do a P2V transition to make that a VM then migrate from that to a newly installed OS+Exchange on the metal of the old exchange box. Your VM environment will need a lot of IO grunt to handle Exchange 2007 though as it is very IO heavy. With the right hardware and a good chunk of testing I see no reason why it would not work though.

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    Gatt's Avatar
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    Ah that sounds an idea..
    Would I need to move the mailboxes to the VM as well or could i just virtualise the OS+exchange 2007
    then install 2010 and then use the mailboxes from their current location on the physical server?

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    SYNACK's Avatar
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    You would need to move all of exchange 2007 off the old server, if your exchange data store is on retaskable storage like a SAN you should be able to simply allow the VM access to the storage and then open the DB off the storage location. Exchange won't open its DBs off network storage though so if it is local to the physical server then you will need to move the whole lot over. Depending on your VM solution it should be simple enough to stop the services, P2V it, shutdown the physical box then boot the VM to replace it.

    Just make sure that it is not also running as a DC otherwise VMing it or any other snapshot type is a bad idea.

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    leco's Avatar
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    Could I ask a question as I'm about to go through the same process. How do you do that if the box that Exchange is running on currently is a DC? All of Exchange is on one Server, which is about to be replaced by a VM server under Hyper-V. I was hoping that I could create a VM that would run Exchange. Following the instructions I found on TechNet. But now I'm not sure how to achieve it

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    Gatt's Avatar
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    Exchange 2007 isn't a DC so thats not a problem..
    Our Mailboxes are on a seperate partition (E and Exchange is on the C: Drive on the server.. Can I just virtualize the C: drive or do the mailboxes need go over too?

    Sorry but I tend to get a bit confused at times - lol

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gatt View Post
    Exchange 2007 isn't a DC so thats not a problem..
    Our Mailboxes are on a seperate partition (E and Exchange is on the C: Drive on the server.. Can I just virtualize the C: drive or do the mailboxes need go over too?

    Sorry but I tend to get a bit confused at times - lol
    Running Exchange as a VM wont cause you any problems, i have been running exchange 2007 with over 1,000 Mailboxes without any issues.

    You could have the database store located on another device such as a SAN for example if you wanted to, there would not be any problems with that and then you would have on the VM the OS/Exchange Installation.

    James.

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    Gatt (11th April 2010)

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    sounds promising - I could move the Mailboxes to our NAS box, VM the EX07 server & pointto the NAS box for the mailboxes, install 2010 on the "old" server and once all done move the mailboxes back to the "new" exchange 2010?

    Why Oh WHy did MS have to make this so dificult?

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    SYNACK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by leco View Post
    Could I ask a question as I'm about to go through the same process. How do you do that if the box that Exchange is running on currently is a DC? All of Exchange is on one Server, which is about to be replaced by a VM server under Hyper-V. I was hoping that I could create a VM that would run Exchange. Following the instructions I found on TechNet. But now I'm not sure how to achieve it
    If the new VM server going to be a physical new server? If so I would just put exchange onto a VM on the new box while the old box is still running then simply migrate the mailboxes across, its a case of right clicking them in the exchange manager and telling it which server you want them on. If you are still running Outlook 2003 as long as you leave the old empty server running for a while it will update outlook profiles as they logon to email as well to point to the new server.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gatt View Post
    sounds promising - I could move the Mailboxes to our NAS box, VM the EX07 server & pointto the NAS box for the mailboxes, install 2010 on the "old" server and once all done move the mailboxes back to the "new" exchange 2010?

    Why Oh WHy did MS have to make this so dificult?
    As long as your NAS is able to do iSCSI or DAS because exchange won't mount its DB off a file share then yes this should work fine. I agree that they have made it a bit of a pain by expecting everyone to be transferring to new servers with their new software releases.
    Last edited by SYNACK; 11th April 2010 at 09:18 PM.

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