Friday, April 3, 2009

Good Document for "Planning and Deploying Read-Only Domain Controllers"

I was engaged last week for a big project where I need to design a Read-Only Domain Controller "RODC" for a big customer in the gulf. to be honest i am new in the RODC, and i was searching alot for a document to detail for me the design concepts and criteria for RODC. by the way, RODC is a new Domain Controller Role which is part the Windows 2008 Active Directory Infrastructure.



What is RODC ?


Read-only domain controllers (RODCs) are a new feature of Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS) in Windows Server 2008. RODCs are additional domain controllers for a domain that host complete, read-only copies of the partitions of the Active Directory database and a read-only copy of the SYSVOL folder contents. By selectively caching credentials, RODCs address some of the challenges that enterprises can encounter in branch offices and perimeter networks (also known as DMZs) that may lack the physical security that is commonly found in datacenters and hub sites. RODCs also offer a number of manageability improvements that are described in this guide.


So, i would like to share the link for this good document for you to download and get to know more about RODC. Am in the process of finalizing this design for the customer based on this document. I advice anyone who wants to know, design, present, love to read , more about RODC to download this document from the below link:

Planning and Deploying Read-Only Domain Controllers - RODC


Sunday, March 22, 2009

How to Migrate from Exchange 2000/2003 to Exchange 2007 "Transitioning Guidelienes"

The transition process from Exchange 2003 to Exchange 2007 is a relatively straightforward process and involves the following high level tasks:

  1. Prepare the Active Directory directory service, you can extend the Active Directory schema and create the Active Directory objects and universal security groups to support Exchange 2007 before you install the server roles. Run setup.com /PrepareAD from the command line on the domain controller that is the schema master at the forest root. When you run setup.com /PrepareAD, the task setup.com /PrepareLegacyExchangePermissions also runs to create the universal security group that is granted permissions to send e-mail to Exchange 2007 Hub Transport servers.
  2. Supress minor link state updates on all Exchange 2003 front end servers.
  3. Deploy Exchange 2007 CAS/HUB servers in the same organization/forest as the existing Exchange 2003 servers and choose FE_SERVERNAME as the routing group connector destination

    Note: Using an Exchange Server 2003 front-end server together with an Exchange 2007 Mailbox server is not supported.
  4. Configure the routing group connector to use all Hubs servers.
  5. Deploy the Edge servers
  6. Configure the external firewall to allow for outbound SMTP traffic from the Edge servers.
  7. Configure Edge Sync subscription and rest of the Edge settings.
  8. Configure the external firewall 1:1 NAT for both Edge servers to allow for incoming SMTP traffic.
  9. Delete the old SMTP connectors.
  10. Deploy Exchange 2007 mailbox servers
  11. Configure Public folder replication
  12. Configure the CAS web services virtual directories by following the below steps:

    a. Configure CAS OWA virtual directories to support integrated authentication and to set the the external URL

    b. Configure Outlook Anywhere internal/external URLs with Integrated authentication and set the External/Internal URLs

    c. Configure ActiveSync external URL

    d. On the Exchange 2003 backend clusters; configure the ActiveSync virtual directory to use Integrated Authentication

    e. Configure OAB URLs using the Exchange Management Console and configure it to use HTTPS instead of HTTP
  13. Configure rest of the CAS settings
  14. Publish the ActiveSync through ISA 2006
  15. Test co-existence between both servers:

    a. GAL co-existence is automatically achieved since all servers share the same Active Directory information. This means the GAL will appear the same for both Exchange 2007 and 2003 users

    b. Email connectivity between Exchange 2003 to Exchange 2007 servers will automatically be enabled because of the Routing Group Connector created by the installation of the Hub server role
  16. Move sample mailboxes using the Exchange 2007 move mailbox wizard or cmdlet as a test for the migration

    Note: You do not need to move your existing contacts or distribution groups. They will be available in Active Directory even if you remove your Exchange 2003 or Exchange 2000 servers
  17. On an Exchange 2007 server, for each offline address book (OAB), move the generation process to an Exchange 2007 server. For detailed steps, see How to Move the Offline Address Book Generation Process to Another Server.
  18. Upgrade the email address policies
  19. Upgrade the address lists

    Note: Use the LDAP to OPATH converter tool
  20. Change the routing group connectors to use the Exchange 2003 backend server
  21. Decommission Exchange 2003 Front End servers
  22. Move rest of the mailboxes to the Exchange 2007 mailbox cluster

    Note: If you have any Exchange 2003 or Exchange 2000 recipient policies that have not been applied, moving the mailboxes to an Exchange 2007 server will force the recipient policies to be re-evaluated and applied. Before you move mailboxes, make sure that you want to apply all of the existing recipient policies. If you have an existing recipient policy that you do not want to apply, clear the automatically update e-mail address based on e-mail address policy check box in Active Directory Users and Computers. For more information, see the Exchange Server Team Blog article Yes, Exchange 2007 really enforces Email Address Policies.

    Note: The old Exchange 2003 backend will be running for at least 1 week in order to allow Outlook clients to automatically update their profile to point to the new Exchange 2007 mailbox cluster, otherwise, if the cluster is decommissioned immediately, clients will not be able to access their mailboxes until their profiles are modified to use the new Exchange mailbox server. KOC must ensure that all Outlook clients will logon at least once during this week for their profiles to be updated. Clients that do not logon before the old cluster is decommissioned must be updated manually. Exprofile can be configured to run as a logon script for the MAPI users to automatically configure their Outlook profiles to use the new mailbox server.
  23. Remove the Exchange 2003 backend servers. The decommissioning of the Backend servers should be conducted after making sure that all clients are redirected to the Exchange 2007 servers
  24. Remove the last Exchange 2003 server from the organization. For detailed steps, see http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb288905(EXCHG.80).aspx
    Note that these are just a guidelines to help in your migration planning, i'm not covering all of the scenarios and situations which will vary according to the environment design & setup.

I hope the above steps will be useful to the readers, as the above steps i always use in my deployments for customers.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Best Practices and Guidelines for Hyper-V with Exchange Server 2007 SP1

Am Back Again :)

Today we will talk about the new Hyper-V technology support for the Messaging virtualization from Microsoft, Microsoft released its hardware virtualization software a while ago and eventually the Exchange Server 2007 SP1 is supported in the production environment, in able to make it supported, certain aspects and conditions must be met otherwise you will put yourself in unsupported situation, in this document we will refer to the Windows Server 2008 that will hold the Hyper-V component and will host the virtual servers as the Root, the Virtual Machine that will be running on the Hyper-V are called the Guest, so let's start..

First let's list some of the supported software to fully function in the production over a virtualized environment, below are the list with the latest updates on 26th August 2008:
  • Microsoft Application Virtualization (App-V)
  • Microsoft BizTalk Server
  • Microsoft Commerce Server
  • Microsoft Dynamics AX
  • Microsoft Dynamics CRM
  • Microsoft Dynamics NAV
  • Microsoft Exchange Server (Except UM role)
  • Microsoft Forefront Client Security
  • Microsoft Intelligent Application Gateway (IAG)
  • Microsoft Forefront Security for Exchange (FSE)
  • Microsoft Forefront Security for SharePoint (FSP)
  • Microsoft Host Integration Server
  • Microsoft Internet Security and Acceleration (ISA) Server
  • Microsoft Office Groove Server
  • Microsoft Office PerformancePoint Server
  • Microsoft Office Project Server
  • Microsoft Office SharePoint Server and Windows SharePoint Services
  • Microsoft Operations Manager (MOM) 2005
  • Microsoft Search Server
  • Microsoft SQL Server 2008
  • Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager
  • Microsoft System Center Data Protection Manager
  • Microsoft System Center Essentials
  • Microsoft System Center Operations Manager
  • Microsoft System Center Virtual Machine Manager
  • Microsoft Systems Management Server (SMS)
  • Microsoft Visual Studio Team System
  • Microsoft Windows HPC Server 2008
  • Windows Server 2003 Web Edition
  • Microsoft Windows Server Update Services (WSUS)
  • Windows Web Server 2008

Conditions to support Exchange Server 2007:

  • In Microsoft virtualization environment, it must be Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V x64 (Not Virtual Server NOT virtual PC)
  • The Virtualization software other than Microsoft Hyper-V must pass the Server Virtualization Validation Program SVVP (at this moment only Hyper-V passed this test)
  • Exchange Server 2007 must be with SP1 or later
  • Exchange Server 2007 with SP1 must be installed on a guest operating system running Windows Server 2008 x64
  • Support high availability and Exchange clustering Local Continuous Replication, Cluster Continuous Replication, Single Copy Cluster and Standby Continuous Replication. However when using Quick Migration with Hyper-V the CCR and SCC will not be supported.
    Exchange Server 2007 installed without the Unified Messaging Server role, the UM server role is not yet supported
  • If you will use virtual hard disks, Only Fixed Size Disks are supported. Differencing, dynamically expanded or any virtual storage are not supported, ONLY FIXED SIZE HARD DISK is supported as virtual disk type
  • The Root Server (the one that run the Hyper-V components) must be dedicated server for that purpose, it's not supported to install any other software on the Root server, it should function only as Hyper-V Server
  • Hyper-V include a feature called snapshots that you can revert the system back to this captured state, but it's not supported with Exchange Server 2007 Virtual Guest as the Snapshot is not Exchange-Aware
  • The virtual processor-to-logical processor mapping must not exceed 2:1 otherwise it's not supported, that's mean if you have server with two processors with dual core, that's make total of 4 logical processors, the maximum supported is 2:1 which is 8 CPUs in this case, note that these 8 CPUs is the maximum allowed per ALL guests on the same root
  • hardware-based VSS solutions is not supported to back up virtualized Exchange Server

Guidelines, Recommendations and best practices:

  1. Use pass-through SCSI storage disks or internet iSCSI storage for better performance
  2. Before creating virtual disk, it's recommended to start disk defragment on the root server to reduce disk fragments
  3. Install the integration services on the guest operating system
  4. Ensure that an enforced Data Execution Prevention (DEP) must be available and enabled on the hardware level
  5. Keep in mind that if you will use Windows Server 2008 datacenter Edition, you physical memory can support up to 1 TB (TERABYTE) of memory, with enterprise edition you limited to 64 GB, and for standard only 32 GB of memory
  6. Hyper-V is supported on physical computers with up to 16 logical processors.
  7. You can use TPM chip with Bit Locker ® security feature of Windows Server 2008 to secure your virtual hard disks
  8. The virtual fixed size hard disk is limited in size to 2040 Gigabyte of disk space, while the pass-through physical disks are not limited to a space
  9. You can take up to 50 snapshots of per guest, it's supported only to make your backup solution for a recovery of Exchange disasters
  10. When allocating the number of virtual processors don't forget the root server share of the
    Use Windows System Resource Manager WSRM to control the resources utilization
  11. When calculating the total number of virtual processors required by the root machine, you must also account for both I/O and operating system requirements. In most cases, the equivalent number of virtual processors required in the root operating system for a system hosting Exchange virtual machines is 2. This value should be used as a baseline for the root operating system virtual processor when calculating the overall ratio of physical cores to virtual processors. If performance monitoring of the root operating system indicates you are consuming more processor utilization than the equivalent of 2 processors, you should reduce the count of virtual processors assigned to guest virtual machines accordingly and verify that the overall virtual processor-to-physical core ratio is no greater than 2:1.
  12. The Exchange server guest machine's storage and network design requires additional considerations for the root machine, specifically, the impact to the CPUs on the root machine. In some hardware virtualization environments (such as Hyper-V), all I/O requests that are made by guest virtual machines are serviced through the root machine. In these environments, we recommend that no other I/O intensive applications (for example, Microsoft SQL Server) be deployed on guest machines that are hosted on the same root machine as Exchange server guest machines.
  13. Use multiple network adapters for network-intensive VM workloads, and management
  14. Ensure your storage hardware has I/O bandwidth and capacity to meet current and future needs of the VMs.
  15. Consider Placing VMs with highly disk-intensive workloads on different physical disks will likely improve overall performance
  16. If using clustering, make one Exchange cluster node on one Root, and the other node on another Root to truly achieve high availability

Friday, March 21, 2008

How to Upgrade your Exchange Server 2007 Environment to Exchange Server 2007 Service Pack 1 (Part II: How to Upgrade a Clustered Mailbox Server in a CCR Environment).

This is the Second Part of the Exchange Server 2007 Service Pack 1 Upgrade Series. in this article i will show you the upgrade process of Second Scenario of Exchange Server 2007 Deployments, which is "Cluster Continuous Replication - CCR".

This is the First Article in this Article Series, which talks about Upgrading Typical Exchange Server 2007 to SP1:

Am using off course Microsoft Virtual Server 2005 R2 to run my 5 Virtual Servers. these are the servers I am running on my Lab:

image


  • PRODC01: This is my and Only Domain Controller which hosts my Single Domain Model which is called "ProRangers.net"
  • PRO-HC1: This is Exchange Server 2007 HUB and CAS Server Roles and also my File Share Witness Server (FSW Server).
  • PRO-CCR1: This is the First Cluster Continuous Replication Node - First CCR node or in other words, the Active Node.
  • PRO-CCR2: Last Server which is the Second Cluster Continuous Replication Node - Second CCR node or in other words, the Passive Node.
  • PROMAIL: this is my Clustered Mailbox Server Cluster Group Name.


Exchange 2007 Service Pack 1 Software Requirements


As I mentioned on the First Part of this Article Series, Exchange 2007 SP1 requires the following Software updates and hotfixes to be deployed under all your Exchange Server 2007 RTM Versions. its recommended to deploy these requirements before the actual upgrade process of SP1. These Requirements are:

For Production Exchange Environment (running 64-Bit Version):

For Testing Exchange Environment (running 32-Bit Version):

in my lab, I installed the above requirements before I started the actual upgrade process of SP1.

Which Server needs to be upgraded first ? and what is the recommended upgrade process for Exchange 2007 ?

the Recommended Upgrade sequence for your Exchange 2007 Environment based on your Server Roles, is to start with Client Access Servers - CAS which is the Internet Facing Server and to leave any Mailbox Server Role till the end of the Upgrade process. Start upgrading the First CAS Server , then continue with other CAS Servers under same AD Site or other AD Sites. here is the recommended Upgrade Path based on Exchange Server Roles:

1. Client Access servers
2. Unified Messaging servers
3. Hub Transport servers
4. Edge Transport servers
5. Mailbox servers


Microsoft Says "If you upgrade your servers in this order, you may avoid potential service interruptions"

Important Points to consider for upgrade process for Clustered Mailbox Server in CCR Environment

There are specific things that must be considered and planned for with respect to upgrading a clustered mailbox server in CCR environment to Service Pack 1:

  • before you can upgrade to Exchange Server 2007 SP1 , the Clustered Nodes must be running Windows Server 2003 SP2.
  • a clustered mailbox server can be upgrade to Exchange Server 2007 Service Pack 1 ONLY by using the Command-Line Version of Setup (Setup.com /UpgradeCMS), you can't use the graphical user interface version of setup to upgrade an existing Clustered Mailbox Server running RTM Version of Exchange 2007 to service pack 1 Version of Exchange 2007.
  • backup your clustered mailbox server prior to upgrading to Exchange Server 2007 Service Pack 1 and also after successfully completing the upgrade service pack 1.
  • update the operating system for all your Servers running the RTM Version of Exchange Server 2007 that mentioned above before you start the upgrade process to SP1. the upgrade process will not start if the above update (KB933360) was not installed on all your Exchange Servers 2007.
  • upgrading clustered mailbox server in CCR environment to Service Pack 1 results in outage for the email service during the upgrade process.
  • Both Nodes need to be upgraded to Service Pack 1 in order to be supported, but you must upgrade each node one at a time, then after each node has been upgraded to Service Pack 1, then the Clustered Mailbox Server is upgraded and then brought online.
  • move all clustered resource groups to the active node which includes the clustered mailbox server - CMS, then start with Passive Node, don't start with Active Node. (In my lab, i will start with PRO-CCR2).

Upgrade Passive Node (PRO-CCR2) of Clustered Mailbox Server in CCR Environment

now, we can start the upgrade process of Clustered Mailbox Server in a CCR Environment, we will start with the Passive Node First, so here are the steps:

  1. Logon to the Passive Node (PRO-CCR2) that has delegated the Exchange Server Administrators Role and is part of Local Administrator of on the Passive Node. for my lab i use the Domain Administrator Account. remember that we don't require a user that has been delegated the "Exchange Organization Administrators", such user account is only required when you upgrade your First Exchange Server 2007 RTM Server under your Forest, cause it needs a permission on the AD Schema and Exchange Organization Containers and Folders under the schema, since I had a Hub and CAS server already installed under this organization, i used such account to upgrade this first Hub and CAS server. after the successful installation of my first Exchange 2007 RMT Server to SP1 , then the rest of the upgrade process i only require a user which has been delegated the "Exchange Server Administrators" Role.
  2. Move all Clustered Resources Groups to the Active Node (PRO-CCR1). make sure that the passive node hosts NO Cluster Resources, all Clustered Resources and Groups need to be moved to the Active Node. Clustered Mailbox Server Cluster Group can be left with Online Status at the Active CCR Node during the upgrade process on the passive node. you can use this command from the command line of the passive Node to move your clustered resources from passive node to active node: cluster group <Cluster_Group_Name> /Move
  3. Start the Windows Firewall/Internet Connection Sharing (ICS) service. This service is disabled by default, and you must set its Startup type to Manual or Automatic for the service to be started, starting this service is necessary to allow SP1 Setup to add Windows Firewall exceptions for Exchange services. After the clustered mailbox server has been upgraded on passive node, you can stop and disable this service. here i used the manual status.

    SP1 on Active CCR Node # 1

  4. Stop any Performance Counters services, like Performance Logs and Alerts and any Microsoft Operations Manager agents.
  5. Stop, and then restart the Remote Registry service on the passive node.

    SP1 on Active CCR Node # 2
  6. Open a Command Prompt window, and then navigate to the Exchange 2007 SP1 installation files, then run the following command:

    D:\Setup.com /m:upgrade

    where D: Drive is my DVD Media

    SP1 on Passive CCR Node # 3

    SP1 on Passive CCR Node # 4

    SP1 on Passive CCR Node # 5
  7. Now, after we successfully upgraded the Passive Node (PRO-CCR2) , we have to restart the passive node, this is a must. Now, in my lab, i faced an issue from leaving the Windows Firewall Service in the starting state, and i lost communication between the Two Nodes, so since i don't use Windows Firewall in my lab, and since i am not enabling the Fire Wall service between the Clustered Node, i sat it again as disabled, and restarted the passive node again, and everything was working fine. If you faced the same issue in your production environment, and you are not enabling the communication between the two Clustered Nodes through Windows Firewall, just disable it back again as it was before the upgrade, and restart your passive node again.

Upgrade Clustered Mailbox Server - CMS (or in my lab PROMAIL) in CCR Environment

now, after successfully we upgraded the Passive Node of the Clustered Mailbox Server in the CCR Environment, the next step would be to upgrade the Clustered Mailbox Server Clustered Group - CMS , where i called it here in my lab as (PROMAIL). in this step we will upgrade the CMS from the passive node, and while the CMS Group is in Offline State, its important to bring the CMS Group or PROMAIL (as I call it in my lab) offline before you upgrade it to SP1. here are the steps you need to do:

  1. after you logged into Passive Node (PRO-CCR2), open Exchange Management Shell (EMS) of Exchange Server 2007, and bring the Clustered Mailbox Server "CMS" - PROMAIL offline. you have to know that by starting this process, your Mail Service will be down, so the users will not be able to connect to their mailboxes till you successfully complete CMS Upgrade process to Service Pack 1. To bring the CMS Cluster Group (PROMAIL) offline, run the following command from EMS:

    Stop-ClusteredMailboxServer PROMAIL -StopReason "<Type Any Descriptive Reasons like : Upgrading CMS to E2K7SP1>"

    SP1 on Passive CCR Node # 6

    from the above screen, to can see that the command asks for Confirmation for the action that is going to be applied to your CMS Cluster Group, so click "Y" to proceed. if you want to provide this confirmation within the "Stop-ClsuterMailboxServer" command, then this is the full command:

    Stop-ClusteredMailboxServer PROMAIL -StopReason "<Type Any Descriptive Reasons like : Upgrading CMS to E2K7SP1>" -Confirm:$False

  2. now, you need to move the Clustered Mailbox Server - CMS "PROMAIL" from CCR Active Node (which is not yet upgraded to SP1) to CCR Passive Node (which was upgraded successfully to SP1) by running the following command from Passive Node (PRO-CCR2):

    Move-ClusteredMailboxServer PROMAIL -TargetMachine PRO-CCR2 -MoveComment "<use your own comments here>"

    SP1 on Passive CCR Node # 8

    also, to append the confirmation for this command along with your command, here is the full command:

    Move-ClusteredMailboxServer PROMAIL -TargetMachine PRO-CCR2 -MoveComment "<use your own comments here>" -Confirm:$False
  3. Now, after we move the Clustered Mailbox Server "CMS" - PROMAIL from Active CCR Node (PRO-CCR1) to Passive CCR Node (PRO-CCR2), we need to upgrade the Clustered Mailbox Server - CMS - Cluster Group to Service Pack 1 Version. browse to Exchange Server 2007 Service Pack 1 Setup Files , and run the following command from the command line:

    D:\Setup.com /UpgradeCMS

    UpgradeCMS

    UpgradeCMS #2

    UpgradeCMS # 3

    After successfully upgrading the Clustered Mailbox Server - CMS (PROMAIL) to Service Pack 1 Version, the Setup brings this Cluster Group Online again, and your users can access their mailboxes again. when you reach this stage, actually your Exchange Service provided by Exchange Server 2007 will be running Service Pack 1 Version of Exchange Server 2007 with full features provided by SP1, the only remaining step is to upgrade your First (Active CCR Node - PRO-CCR1). which will be demonstrated in the following section.

Upgrade Active Node (PRO-CCR1) of Clustered Mailbox Server in CCR Environment

now, we can start the upgrade process of the first CCR Node (PRO-CCR1) in the CCR Environment:

  1. Logon to the First Node (PRO-CCR1) that has delegated the Exchange Server Administrators Role and is part of Local Administrator of on the First Node.
  2. Move all Clustered Resources Groups to the Second Node (PRO-CCR2). make sure that the First Node (PR-CCR1) hosts NO Cluster Resources, all Clustered Resources and Groups must be moved to the Second CCR Node which was successfully upgraded to SP1 and which runs the CMS Cluster Group. Clustered Mailbox Server Cluster Group can be left with Online Status at the Second CCR Node during the upgrade process on the First CCR Node. you can use this command from the command line of the First Node to move your clustered resources from first node to second node:

    cluster group <Cluster_Group_Name> /Move
  3. Start the Windows Firewall/Internet Connection Sharing (ICS) service on the First CCR Node.

    SP1 on Active CCR Node # 1
  4. Stop any Performance Counters services, like Performance Logs and Alerts and any Microsoft Operations Manager agents.
  5. Stop, and then restart the Remote Registry service on the First Node.

    SP1 on Active CCR Node # 2
  6. Open a Command Prompt window, and then navigate to the Exchange 2007 SP1 installation files, then run the following command:

    D:\Setup.com /m:upgrade

    where D: Drive is my DVD Media

    SP1 on Active CCR Node # 4
  7. After successfully upgrading the First CCR Node, you need to restart the CCR Node first, and don't forget to disable back the Windows Firewall Service before the restart.
  8. after you upgraded all your Exchange 2007 Servers from RTM to Service Pack 1 Edition, open Exchange Management Console, and make sure that all your Exchange Servers have the same Version Edition.

    Exchagne Version after SP1

Conclusion

I know that this article and most of my articles are very detailed ones :) but i feel that i have to be detailed in my articles so others can understand exactly what i am talking about in my articles. I would appreciate from the readers to rate this article if they found it good, Excellent, or even Bad article.

stay tuned for others upcoming articles.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Exchange 2007 SP1 Upgrade Failed - Weird Problem while upgrading Exchange 2007 RTM to SP1

Hello all, while I was preparing my Virtual Machine which is running single Windows 2003 SP2 as DC and running Exchange 2007 RTM Version (HUB, CAS, and MBX) for my next article to post, I faced a weird problem which misses up the whole virtual machine, for no valid reason. Here is the problem that I faced:


I was updating this virtual machine to Exchange Server 2007 SP1, and while the upgrade was in the process, suddenly the whole machine got frozen, and it stayed like that for almost 30 minutes, I could not access it, where I had to force the shutdown of this machine. Now, when this machine restarted I logged on and found so many errors in the event viewer related for Exchange. Here is the Weird thing, I couldn’t find the Exchage 2007 folders under the program list, where did they go??????


So, I tried to run the SP1 upgrade setup again, using the GUI, but this is what I received:


“The Exchange Files are not installed, but the backup settings registry key is present. Only build to Build upgrade mode is available”


When I checked the services to see if any of the services are not working, I saw that all Exchange 2007 Services (around 13 Services) with IIS and others were disabled. Actually these services were disabled by the upgrade process, and suppose to be restarted again after the upgrade process finished successfully but since the installation failed in the middle of the way, all these services remains disabled.
Now, how to solve this problem?
Since the GUI could not solve my problem, I tried this time the Shell command, so I ran this command:

Setup.com /Mode:Upgrade


And also, it failed, but this time, the error is manageable somehow, this is the output I got:
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Welcome to Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 Unattended Setup

Preparing Exchange Setup

The following server roles will be upgraded

Hub Transport Role
Client Access Role
Mailbox Role

Performing Microsoft Exchange Server Prerequisite Check

Hub Transport Role Checks ......................... FAILED
Setup cannot continue with upgrade because 'C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\bin\ExchHelp.chm' is open. Close the file and restart setup.

Client Access Role Checks ......................... FAILED
Unable to read data from the Metabase. Ensure that Microsoft Internet Information Services is installed.

The World Wide Web (W3SVC) service is either disabled or not installed on this computer. You must exit Setup, install the required component, then restart the Setup process.

Setup cannot continue with upgrade because 'C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\bin\ExchHelp.chm' is open. Close the file and restart setup.

Mailbox Role Checks ......................... FAILED
Unable to read data from the Metabase. Ensure that Microsoft Internet Information Services is installed.

The World Wide Web (W3SVC) service is either disabled or not installed on this computer. You must exit Setup, install the required component, then restart the Setup process.

Setup cannot continue with upgrade because 'C:\ProgramFiles\Microsoft\Exchange Server\bin\ExchHelp.chm' is open. Close the file and restart setup.

The Exchange Server setup operation did not complete.Visit http://support.microsoft.com and enter the Error ID to find moreinformation.

Exchange Server setup encountered an error.
-----------------------------------------------------------

So, as you can see from the output of the upgrade command, the ExchHelp.chm file is missing and can’t be located under the Bin Directory of Exchange server 2007 in the path that was mentioned in the error output. Also the setup process can’t access IIS Metabase , off course because the IIS and other related services were disabled.

So, here are the steps I took to solve this problem:

  • Locate the ExchHelp.chm file from Exchange 2007 SP1 setup directory (located under “Media Drive:\Setup\ServerRoles\Common”) and copy it back under Exchange Binaries directory (BIN) located under my server ('C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\bin’).

  • Set the following services back to Automatic and started them:

    o IIS Admin Service
    o HTTP SSL Service
    o World Wide Web Publishing Service.

  • Rerun the upgrade again:

    Setup.com /Mode:Upgrade


And here we go, the setup completed SUCCESSFULLY :) and now I am happy, I restarted the server and testing the health of my server , everything is back to normal now, with an updated server to SP1 :)

Now, I can start preparing for my second article, Actually I stopped the article till I figure out why this problem happened, and thanks god I solved it :) now I am happy.

Stay tuned for my next article from my working virtual machine :)

Friday, February 29, 2008

How to Create Mailboxes for Bulk of Users using "Single Command Shell" in Exchange Server 2007

Exchange Management Shell, this powerful and amazing tool that comes along with Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 as one of the Two New Administrative Consoles that you can use to administer the entire Exchange 2007 Organization. I will show you, in this article one of the amazing techniques that you can use with Exchange Management Shell to create mailboxes for users that does not have a mailboxes, using one Single Command. EMS will allow you to locate all non-mailbox-enabled users under your active directory domain and immediately create a mailbox for all these users, and even specify under which mailbox store and storage group you want to host these new mailboxes.

I will show you as well, how to locate users based on command shared attributes between some of users and therefore create a mailbox for these users only, Great right :) So let’s start.

I am using one Domain Controller with Exchange 2007 SP1 Server installed to be able to show you with snaps what I am talking about here. I have created Two OU’s, First OU called “Rangers” my community :) , and second OU called “DotNetBoom” , another community “Enemy” :) just kidding. Now, I created new users under each OU without creating a mailbox for them.

Now, I want to locate or list all the users under my “ProRangers.net” domain that do not have mailboxes. In order to do that from Shell Command, I will be using the “Get-User” Command with a special attributes or Filter called “RecipientType” with a value of “User” to search for only non-mailbox users, here is the command:

Get-User l Where-Object{$_.RecipientType –eq “User”}

The output will be a list of all users that do not have a mailbox:

As you can see from the above screen, the command bring all the users under “prorangers.net” domain that does not have mailbox, even a list of a users that I don’t want to create a mailbox for, like Guest, Support_XXXXXX, krbtgt, IUSR_XXX, etc. Then what to do?


Ok, lets minimize the result by doing a search for a users that are located under a certain OU. Yes, you can do that, I’ve told you its amazing tools :) . Exchange Management Shell can get a list of all non-mailbox users that are located under certain OU by using “-OrganizationUnit” attribute along with “Get-User Command.


Let’s say I want to get a list of all users located under “Rangers” OU that does not have a mailbox, here is the exact command:

Get-User –OrganizationalUnit “Rangers” l Where-Object{$_.RecipientType –eq “User”}

Now, look to the output list:



Now, from the above list, you can see that these are my users that are located under my “Rangers” OU, for which I want to create a mailboxes. Now, lets create amailboxes for all these users under a mailbox store called “ProRangers Store”. I will use the same upper command to first get the list, then use the output of this list and pipeline it with another command to create the mailboxes for these users under the chosen mailbox store, here is the command:

Get-User –OrganizationalUnit “Rangers” l Where-Object{$_.RecipientType –eq “User”} l Enable-Mailbox –Database “ProRangers Store”}


And here is the output:


Using Single Shell Command, I could first locate all non-mailbox-enabled users that located under certain OU (Rangers) and then create a mailbox for them, did you see easier than this before ? I don’t think so :) . Imagine you have hundreds of users , no not hundreds , thousands of users that you want to create mailboxes for them, wouldn’t be easier for you to use such Tool ? I think yes.

Ok, now, lets go beyond this normal search. Lets say that you have single OU , and this OU contains users from multiple departments, and you want to create a mailbox for users from certain department, then my answer to you is “Exchange Command Shell - EMS” offcourse.


Lets take a look into the following OU called “DotNetBoom” and notice the Departments column for each user, specially the Users under “Training” Department:



Now, lets say I want to create a mailbox for those Trainer users who are working under “Training” Department. So, my command would search for the users under "DotNetBoom" OU who does not have a mailbox AND have “Training” Value under “Department” Attribute, here I combined two filters, first filter was the users without mailboxes, “AND” then the users that have “Training” value under “Department” Attribute. Then the output of this search will be used to “Mail-Enabled” these users, here is the command:


Get-User –OrganizationalUnit “DotNetBoom” l where-object{$_.RecipientType –eq “User” -and $_.Department –eq “Training”}


And this is the output of this command:


After you found your users or trainers , lets create a mailbox for them, and this time, I will place their mailboxes under another mailbox store called “DotNetBoom Store”, here is the complete command:

Get-User –OrganizationalUnit "DotNetBoom" l where-object{$_.RecipientType –eq “User” -and $_.department –eq “Training”} l Enable-Mailbox –Database “DotNetBoom Store”}

And here is the output :


Lets say you want to find your Trainees now that located under your domain if you don’t know where are your trainees located, but you know that they have a title of “Trainee” under “Title” Attribute of each user. Lets say I have a trainee under “DotNetBoom” and “Rangers” OU’s, and I want to create a mailbox for these trainees, then I would run the following command to find these trainees and create mailboxes for them under a special Mailbox Store created for the Trainees called “Trainee Store”:

Get-User l where-object{$_.RecipientType –eq “User” -and $_.Title –eq “Trainee”} l Enable-Mailbox –Database “Trainee Store”}


and here is the output for my trainee located under my domain “prorangers.net”:



Where, DTrainee X is located under “DotNetBoom” OU and PTrainee X is located under “Rangers” OU.


Ok, the last thing, I have users with mailboxes and users without mailboxes. Now, I want to create a mailbox for the remaining users across the “ProRangers” Domain and regardless their OU Location, but based on the following conditions:

· User does not have mailbox, AND
· Have the word “Community” in their ”Company” Attribute, by using -ilike filter switch.


So, here is the command:

Get-User l where-object{$_.RecipientType –eq “User” -and $_.Company –ilike ‘*Community*’} l Format-Table Name, RecipientType, Company

In the above command, I want the output to show me the name of the user, and the company name that belongs to that user, so I used “Format-Table” Switch. here is the output of the above command, and check the name of the company for each user, it meets the condition of the command, where the company contains the word “Community” and these are non-mailbox-enabled users too:


Fine, lets shoot the command that will create mailbox for these users, and locate them under “ProRangers Store” Mail Store:

Get-User l where-object{$_.RecipientType –eq “User” -and $_.Company –ilike ‘*Community*’} l Enable-Mailbox –Database “ProRangers Store”}

And here is the result,



Now, after we created mailboxes for all usesr using Command Shell, lets see who are the users that don’t have mailbox under “ProRangers” domain, using the first command at the beginning of this article, which is:

Get-User l Where-Object{$_.RecipientType –eq “User”}


And here is the output of this command:


Now, lets get the users who are “UserMailbox” Type of users, I will run the same command, but this time with “UserMailbox” instead of “User” for the RecipientType Filer, here is the command:

Get-User l Where-Object{$_.RecipientType –eq “UserMailbox”}


And the output this time you will figure it out, when you run this command :) Just hint, you the output should list all Mailbox-Enabled users under your Domain.

I hope that this article was somehow interrested to all of you, and you got something new and amazing by using the amazing tools “Exchange Management Shell

The First Rollup Update after Exchange Server 2007 Service Pack 1 is now RELEASED

Yes, Its true :) Microsot Exchange Product Team, has just release the First Rollup Update for Exchange Server 2007 Service Pack 1 Edition. This update is different than the Rollup Update 6 for Exchange Server 2007 RTM (Release To Manufacture) Edition, and can't be used to update the RTM Version of Exchange 2007 even, as Microsoft said.
so,

Note, before you update your Production Exchange SP1 or RTM Version, you have to test the update process on the lab, which is the recommendation always from everybody. so start testing it, and update your production servers to the latest updates and rollups for RTM and SP1 Versions.

Another thing, If you don't upgrade your RTM Version to SP1, then you missed the whole fun :) SP1 has a great features and new technologies as well as the latest rollup updates for SP1 which are 5 (Rollup Update # 6 came after the release of SP1 so its not included in this version of Service Pack, it might be included in the newer release of Service Pack 2, I don't know really :) )

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

How to Upgrade your Exchange 2007 Environment to Exchange Server 2007 Service Pack 1 (Part I: Install SP1 on Typical Exchange 2007 Installation)

The new release of Exchange Server 2007 Service Pack one has a new features and technologies which covers so many areas of Exchange Server 2007 RTM Release which will help to increase productivity and reduce administrative overhead. These new features and technologies were not available in the RTM Release of Exchange 2007. Here are some of these features:


  • Native IPV6 support (Windows Server 2008 & Windows Vista)

  • Public folder configuration from GUI Interface of Exchange Management Console (EMC).

  • POP and IMAP configuration from GUI Interface of Exchange Management Console (EMC).

  • SendAs permission configuration from within EMC.

  • Outlook Web Access Enhancement (Month view, Public Folder Web Access, More languages for spell checking, Personal distribution lists, support for viewing Office 2007 file formats as HTML.

  • Deleted items recovery from OWA, S/MIME in OWA, and more).

  • Delegation wizard scenarios.

  • Delegate management.

  • Folder permission management.

  • Ability to export mailboxes to PST files.

  • New High Availability (Continuous Replication) Technologies (Standby Continuous Replication – SCR).

  • Better integration between OCS and Exchange Server.

  • Manage Clustered Mailbox Server from within Exchange Management Console – EMC.

  • And more new Shell Commands to manage your Exchange Organization from the new Administration Console – Exchange Management Console (EMS).

I will talk in details in my coming articles about these new features and technologies, but now, I will talk about the upgrade process to show you how it’s easy to upgrade your current production exchange server to SP1. This article will show you how to upgrade your production Exchange 2007 Environment in different scenarios (Typical & Clustered Mailbox Server either in Single Copy Cluster – SCC, or Continuous Cluster Replication – CCR) using the Setup Wizard or Command Prompt.


Things to know before you Start the Upgrade Process:


Before you start the upgrade process of Exchange Server 2007 RTM Environment to SP1, here are some important points you need to take into your consideration:


  • If the first upgrade failed for one or more server roles, you must run the upgrade again.

  • If you have multiple Exchange Server 2007 Servers under your Exchange Organization, its recommend that you first upgrade the Client Access servers (CAS). In an organization that has multiple Active Directory sites that use multiple Client Access servers in a proxy situation, you must upgrade the Internet-facing Client Access servers before the Client Access servers that are not Internet-facing, in other words, start the upgrade process from the server that you use to access your mail from outside using Outlook Web Access (OWA).

  • It is not supported to upgrade the operating system that runs on your Exchange 2007 Servers (RTM) Version from Windows Server 2003 to Windows Server 2008.

  • It’s not supported to upgrade the operating system that runs on your Exchange Server 2007 SP1 Version from Windows Server 2003 to Windows Server 2008.

  • To deploy Exchange 2007 SP1 on Windows Server 2008, you must install Windows Server 2008 on a computer that does not have Exchange installed at all, and then install Exchange 2007 SP1 Version. The RTM Version of Exchange 2007 does not support to be installed on Windows Server 2008, you need to use the newer version of Exchange Server 2007 RTM that comes with SP1. Or you can use directly the SP1 binaries to have a fresh installation of Exchange Server 2007 on Windows Server 2008 as well Windows Sever 2003.

  • It’s recommended that you stop and then restart the Remote Registry service on the computer that you want to upgrade its Exchange 2007 Version from RTM to SP1.

  • You cannot use the Setup wizard to upgrade a clustered Mailbox server, you have to use the Command Prompt to do the upgrade.

  • When you upgrade Exchange 2007 RTM server to Exchange 2007 SP1, you upgrade all the server roles that are installed on that server.

  • After you upgrade your Exchange Server to Exchange 2007 SP1, you cannot uninstall the service pack to revert to Exchange 2007 RTM. If you uninstall SP1 then you will remove Exchange 2007 completely from the server.

What permission do you need?

  • If you are upgrading your First Exchange 2007 RTM Server under your Exchange Organization that has Client Access, Hub Transport, Mailbox, or Unified Messaging server role installed then the account you use must be delegated the Exchange Organization Administrators role. The account must also be a member of the local Administrators group on that computer.

  • If you are upgrading your Edge Transport server role to SP1, the account you use must be a member of the local Administrators group on that Edge Server.

  • After you upgraded the First Exchange 2007 RTM Server under your organization to SP1, to upgrade any additional Exchange RTM Servers under the same Exchange Organization to SP1 the account you use must be delegated the Exchange Server Administrators role, cause Exchange SP1 contains AD Schema and Domain Updates, The account must also be a member of the local Administrators group on that computer.

  • To upgrade a computer that has only the Exchange management tools installed, you must log on by using an account that is a member of the local Administrators group on that computer.

  • To upgrade the AD Schema before the actual SP1 upgrade process, then the account you use to upgrade the server must be a member of the Schema Admins group and the Enterprise Admins group.

  • To Prepare Active Directory (AD) for Exchange Server 2007 SP1, the account you use must be member of the Enterprise Admins group.

  • To upgrade your Active Directory Domain, the account you use to upgrade the server must be a member of the Domain Admins group.

  • To update the AD Schema separately before the SP1 upgrade, you need to run the following command from the Command Prompt window on a computer that is in the same domain and Active Directory site as the schema master

    Setup.exe /PrepareSchema or Setup.exe /PS

  • To update Active Directory (AD) separately before the SP1 upgrade, you need to run the following command from the Command Prompt window on a computer that is in the same domain and Active Directory site as the schema master:

    Setup.exe /PrepareAD or Setup.exe /p

  • To update Active Directory Domain separately before the SP1 upgrade, you need to run the following command from the Command Prompt window from your Exchange Server:

    Setup.exe /PrepareDomain or Setup.exe /pd
  • To prepare all domains under your Forest in case you have child and subchild domains, then run the following command

    Setup.exe /PrepareAllDomains or Setup.exe /pad

Exchange Server 2007 SP1 Prerequisites


Exchange 2007 SP1 requires the following updates to be installed on the Exchange Server that you are going to upgrade from RTM Version to SP1 Version ( Off course for the Production you gonna use the 64-Bit Edition, and for the Testing Environment you going to use the 32-Bit, so i am listing both here) :

1. For Production Exchange Environment (running 64-Bit Version):

2. For Testing Exchange Environment (running 32-Bit Version):

Scenario # 1: Install SP1 on Typical Installation of Exchange Server 2007.


We mean by Typical Installation of Exchange when you install the Default Roles of Exchange Server 2007 on single server. The default server roles of Exchange are the non clustered Exchange Roles, which are HUB Transport Role (HUB), Client Access Server Role (CAS), and Mailbox Server Role (MBX). Edge Server is not included in the typical installation since it can’t be installed with any other exchange roles. It has to be installed alone in the DMZ Area and should not be member of your AD domain. So let’s assume that you have one server having these three typical or default roles.



Upgrade your Exchange (Typical) Server 2007 to SP1 using Setup Wizard:


  1. Log on to the server on which you want to install Exchange 2007 SP1.

  2. Insert the Exchange Server 2007 SP1 DVD into the DVD drive.


  3. On the Start page, under Install, click Install Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 SP1.



  4. In the Exchange Server 2007 SP1 Setup wizard, on the Introduction page, click Next.




  5. On the License Agreement page, select I Accept the terms in the license agreement, and then click next.


  6. On the Readiness Checks page, , The current system will be validated and if the current server has any critical issues the setup will not continue, in our case the only warning was about the .Net Framework SP1 that was already installed. Just click on Upgrade to start the upgrade process.


  7. Now, the actual upgrade process will start, here are some screens of the progress and status of the upgrade process:



  8. On the Completion page, click Finish.



  9. To verify the new Release Build number of Exchange Server 2007, open Exchange Management Console – EMC, and click on “Server Configuration”, and note the number under “Version” Column in the middle screen, as shown below:


    The new build number is Version 8.1 (Build 140.6)

  10. to get Exchange Versions and Editions using Command Shell, run the following command:

    Get-ExchangeServer l Format-List Name, Edition, *Version*

    or, for simplicity

    Get-ExchangeServer l fl Name, Edition, *Version*

This command will get you all Exchange Server's Edition (Standard or Enterprise) and the version of exchange Exchange server under your Exchange Organization.

To upgrade your Exchange (Typical) Server 2007 to SP1 using Command Prompt:



  1. Log on to the server on which you want to install Exchange 2007 SP1.


  2. Insert the Exchange Server 2007 SP1 DVD into the DVD drive.


  3. At a command prompt, run the following command.

    setup /mode:upgrade


  4. Now the upgrade process will start from the Command Shell, during the upgrade the progress of each upgrade process will appear within the Command Shell Screen. after the upgarde finishes, you will get the same result shown below:


Conclusion


This is the end of Part I, which shows you the detailed steps on how to upgrade your Typical Exchange 2007 upgrade process from RTM to SP1. The upcoming articles of this series are:


Part II: How to Upgrade a Clustered Mailbox Server in a CCR Environment to Exchange 2007 SP1.


Part III: How to Upgrade a Clustered Mailbox Server in a SCC Environment to Exchange 2007 SP1.

Monday, February 18, 2008

New update for Exchange Server 2007 Help File

I was checking the Exchange Server 2007 Documentation Site, and i noticed that there are a newer update for MS Exchange Server 2007 Help File. the newer update is on 6th of Feb 08, and the size of this file is arround 20 MB.

Download it from the following Link:

Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 Service Pack 1 Help

Monday, February 11, 2008

Windows Server 2008 - Try It

Try out Windows Server 2008 in a virtual environment by following step-by-step guides that walk you through specific scenarios around running applications from anywhere, high availability, server management, and security and policy enforcement.
Don't Miss it, be the First who test The New Windows Server Technology :)

Saturday, January 5, 2008

How to Install MS Exchange Server 2007 on a new Server under a New Active Directory Domain/Forest - Part II

This is Part II of the Article Series of "How to Install MS Exchange Server 2007 on a new Server under a New Active Directory Domain/Forest". In this article we will start with Updating Active Directory Domain with Exchange Organization Information.

Prepare Active Directory Domain with Exchange Organization Information

In this step we will prepare Active Directory Domain with Exchange Organization Name and will create Exchange Server 2007 Containers under Active Directory Domain Partition. the New Organization will be created when the update process completed successfully.

To update Active Directory Domain with New Exchange Organization:
  1. Logon to the server where you will install Exchange Server 2007 with an domain account that is member of "Domain Admins" group. to make sure that you are loggin by the correct user, logon by the Domain Administrator Account "Administrator".
  2. Put your Exchange Server 2007 Media DVD on the CD Room, and go to Command Prompt screen. go to Run ---> cmd.exe, then click Enter.

  3. Change the path in the command promt to your Exchange 2007 Media Drive.
  4. run the following command :
    setup.com /PrepareAD /OrganizationName:"Organization Name" or setup.com /p /on:"Organization Name". then click on Enter .

  5. Now the Setup Process will contact your Domain Controller and updates the Domain Partition and Configuration Partition with Exchange Server 2007 New Contrainers and New Orgazation Name will be created as well.


  6. To verify that this step completed successfully, make sure that there is a new organizational unit (OU) in the root domain called Microsoft Exchange Security Groups. This OU should contain the following new Exchange USGs:

    Exchange Organization Administrators
    Exchange Recipient Administrators
    Exchange View-Only Administrators
    Exchange Servers
    ExchangeLegacyInterop

    as shown below:


  7. After the process of Updating Active Directory Domain has been finished, and the Exchange Organization has been created, allow time for replication between all your domain controllers, or you can force the replication between your domain controllers from Active Directory Sites and Services MMC.

Install the First Exchange Server 2007 Server under the new Exchange Organization

Now after we prepared the Active Directory Domain and Forest, we are ready to install the First Exchange Server 2007 with the Three Main Server Roles (Hub Transport Server Role, Client Access Server Role, and Mailbox Server Role).

Before starting with Exchange Server 2007 Installation, make sure that the following Windows Services / Components are installed on the Server (use Add or Remove Programs in Control Panel to add these services):


  • World Wide Web Publishing Service (W3SVC): this component is required for Mailbox, Client Access Server Roles.
  • Internet Information Services (IIS): this component is required for Mailbox Server Role.
  • COM+ access (IIS 6.0 component): this component is required for Mailbox Server Role.
  • ASP.NET version 2.0: this component is required for Client Access Server Role.

The following Hotfixes are required by Exchange Server 2007 (Mailbox Server Role):

Note: make sure that your Exchange Server is updated with the latest security patches and hotfixes by running Windows Update on the Exchange Server.

Now, if the above requirements have been met, then you are ready to install your first Exchange Server 2007 under the newly created Exchange Organization. to start the Exchange installation, keep the Exchange Media CD in the Exchange Server CD Drive and follow the below steps:

  • now, the following "Auto Launch" screen will appear immediatly upong inserting the Exchagne Media CD in the Server's CD Drive, If the Autorun screen of Exchange didn't appear, you can access it by double-clicking on setup.exe on the Exchange Media CD:
  • Now, from the above screen, you can see that the first activated step is step # 4 Install Microsoft Exchange, which means that all Exchange 2007 Software Prerequisits have been installed on that server, if any step (from 1 till 3) was active, then you can't proceed with step # 4 untill you finish all the above 3 steps. he, I installed all the Exchange prerequists for Exchange 2007, and now i can start with Step # 4 - Install Microsoft Exchange. if you recieved the same screen, then go and ahead and start the installation.
  • In the Next screen, An Introduction to Exchange Server 2007 appears, click on Next.

  • Next screen will be the license agreement (EULA). after finishing reading the teams and conditions mentioned within this Agreement (which i doubt you would read it :) ), click on Accept.


  • Next is the "Error Reporting" Screen. Error reporting will allow your Exchange Server to send error reports to Microsoft in case any problem occurred to your exchange. If you would like to enable error reporting service on your Exchange Server, then select "Yes"; otherwise click "No". then , click "Next".


  • In the next screen, "Installation Type" screen, there are two options, the "Typical Exchange Server Installation" and the "Custom Exchange Server Installation" buttons. the default selection is Typical Installation which includes (Hub Transport, Client Access and Mailbox roles, and Management Tools). If you select "Typical Installation" then the three default Server Roles will be selected. to manually select these roles, then click on Custom Installation, from there you can choose any role from the avialable selection. here i will choose the typical installation. To change the default installation path for Exchange, click "Browse" and select a path. By default it will be installed in "[Program Files directory]\Microsoft\Exchange Server". To continue, click "Next".


    If "Custom Exchange Server Installation" was selected then the following screen will appear. Click on the checkbox beside each server role name to install the corresponding Exchange Server role. The Mailbox, Client Access, Hub Transport, and Unified Messaging server role can be installed together if on single server. However, please note that each of the Edge Transport Server Role, Active Clustered Mailbox Role, and Passive Clustered Mailbox Role CANNOT be installed with any of the server roles on the same Exchange server. The Management Tools are installed with any selected role, or can be installed independently for an "Admin Only" configuration.


  • Next page is "Client Settings" and this page will be presented if the Mailbox role has been selected for installation and if this will be the first Exchange Server in the organization. It is asking if you want public folders enabled for any Outlook 2003 or Entourage clients in your organization. Select "Yes" if you have ealier outlook versions or "No" if you have only 2007 version of outlook, then click "Next" to continue.


  • After that the "Readiness Check" screen will appear and Exchange Setup will start to check if the server is ready for Exchange 2007 or not by checking all the prerequisits of Exchange 2007 whether they were deployed on the server or not. the check process will be ran against all server roles that been selected during the setup wizard. Please wait for the checks to complete then click "Install" to start the installation. If there are errors, a detailed error message will be given on how to resolve the problem. If there are warnings, please take note and take appropriate action. The same prerequisite may show up more than once across the server roles (such as a required software update), but fixing the problem will satisfy the prerequisite. Note: if you wish to collapse the information area under each role, click once on the double up arrows on the right. To expand the information, click on that arrow (double down arrows) again.



  • Then the installation of Exchange 2007 on this server will start. The installation progress screen will appear and will be updated as the installation continues to each step. The installation can take a number of minutes to complete while at this stage. After everything is done.

  • On the Completion Screen click Finish and the Exchange Management Console will open if the checkbox at the bottom remains checked. After this point, the auto launch screen is again presented and you should continue to "Step 5: Get critical updates for Microsoft Exchange" to get the latest updates

When you click on Finish, the Exchange Management Console will open to start administering your Exchange Environements. in the upcoming articles i will cover you to update your Exchange Server 2007 (Different Type of Installation including Typical, CCR, SCC, and LCR) to Service Pack 1, so stay tuned.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

How to Install MS Exchange Server 2007 on a new Server under a New Active Directory Domain/Forest - Part I

Now after I covered the installation of Windows Server 2003 on a new server and promiting this new server to the first Domain Controller of a new Active Directory Forest/Domain, now its the time to install Exchange Server 2007 on a new server.

In this Article, I will talk about the actual deployment steps and procedures that you will use to install a new Exchange Server 2007 server with the Three Main Server Roles "Hub Transport Server, Client Access Server and Mailbox Server Roles" on a single server using the GUI installation tools. I will show you how to Prepare your Active Directory for Exchage Server 2007 Installation, and how to check the pre-requisites using a prerequisites scanner engine built into the Exchange 2007 installation program. Now I will start in Preparing the Active Directory Environment in order to host Exchange Organization.


How to Raise your Windows 2003 - Domain Functional Level to "Windows 2000 Mode"

As part of the Infrastructure Requirements for Exchange Server 2007, the Domain Functional Level for your Active Directroy has to be in "Windows 2000 Native Mode" or higher, so first you have to raise your Windows 2003 Domain Level to Windows 2000 Native Mode.

To raise the Domain Functional Level to Windows 2000 follow these steps:

Note: This is a one way process, it can't be changed back, so DO NOT raise the domain functional level if you have, or will have, any Windows NT 4.0 or earlier domain controllers. As soon as the domain functional level is raised to Windows 2000 native or Windows Server 2003, it cannot be changed back to a Windows 2000 mixed domain.

  1. Log on to your Domain Controller with domain administrator credentials.
  2. Click Start, point to Administrative Tools, and then click Active Directory Users and Computers.
  3. In the console tree, right-click the domain that appears under Active Directory Users and Computers (in my example it would be "alankar.com" , and then click Raise Domain Functional Level.

  4. Under Select an available domain functional level, Click "Windows 2000 native", and then click Raise to raise the domain functional level to Windows 2000 native.

  5. Read the "Warning" message that appears after you click the "Raise" button. it says that this process cannot be changed after you confirm this message. So you have to be careful in your decision. If you don't have and will never have Windows NT4.0 Domain Controllers (PDC or BDC) under this domain, then click Ok, but if you are planning to have NT4.0 PDC or BDC under this domain, then DO NOT proceed in this process. now, i assume that you are sure that you will never have NT4.0 under your domain, so click OK.


  6. Afer your domain was raised successfully to Windows 2000 Native Mode, you will get the following confirmation message box for the successful raise of your domain, click OK.



  7. After the successful Raise of your Domain, you will see the immediate affect of this raise on the same box shown in Step # 4. Check the Domain Level under "Current Domain Functional Level" it should show "Windows 2000 Native" as shown below:


Prepare Active Directory Schema for Exchange 2007 Attributes and Classis


Now, after the Domain Level has been raised successfully to Windows 2000 Native Mode, we can proceed with the next step of Exchange 2007 Installation which is "Updating the Active Directory schema with Exchange 2007 Attributes and Classes. this process is the same process we used to do with Exchange Server 2003 installation, if you remember, that we used to run Exchange 2003 Setup with "/ForestPrep" switch against the Active Directory Schema to extend the schema with Exchange Server 2003 Attributes and Classis, with Exchange 2007, still its the same process, but with different Switches. here are the steps to Extend Active Directory Schema for Exchange 2007 Attributes and Classis:

  1. Logon to the server where you will install Exchange Server 2007 with an domain account that is member of "Schema Admins" group. to make sure that you are loggin by the correct user, then logon by the Domain Administrator Account "Administrator".
  2. Put your Exchange Server 2007 Media DVD on the CD Room, and go to Command Prompt screen. go to Run ---> cmd.exe, then click Enter.
  3. Change the path in the command promt to your Exchange 2007 Media Drive.
  4. run the following command : setup.com /PrepareSchema or setup.com /PS


  5. after you click on Enter, the Exchange Setup will connect to your Domain Controller that host the Schema Master Role and updates or extend the AD Schema with Exchange Attributes.


  6. Make sure that the /PrepareSchema Commands Completed successfully.
  7. Allow time for replication to allow the Schema Master DC replicates the changes to all DC's under your domain, offcourse the time depends on how many Domain Controllers under your Domain/Forest, the number of DC's you have, and the connectin speed between all the DC's.

Now, Part 1 of this article has finished, i will continue in the coming parts of this serries , so stay tuned.