Multi-Site Microsoft Windows A.D. & Exchange Server Migration
Closed     Case # 10010     Affiliated Job:  American Systems Consulting, Inc.2
Opened:  Unknown     Closed:  Unknown
Total Hit Count:  13605     Last Hit:  Tuesday, July 23, 2024 4:48:51 PM
Unique Hit Count:  4338     Last Unique Hit:  Tuesday, July 23, 2024 10:09:33 AM
Case Type(s):  Server, Client Project
Case Notes(s):  All cases are posted for review purposes only. Any implementations should be performed at your own risk.

Propose, plan, execute and conclude a project for a client of ASCI's. This project is to migrate a Windows 2000 domain environment to Windows 2003; and migrate Exchange 5.5 servers to Exchange 2003. This client has 4 sites with all SMTP traffic passing through the corporate office in Dublin, Ohio.

The Proposal
Based on my previous understanding of this client's infrastructure, as part of the proposal's creation was to include time to acquire 4 new Dell PowerEdge servers to replace the existing Exchange 5.5 systems, test the implementation and proceed with one of two scenarios determined by the testing. The first scenario involved going to each site and migrating each Exchange server one by one. The second scenario involved a person at each site performing the migration all at once. It was preferred to process the upgrade one at a time to involve the least number of tech staff. The proposal also included time for any follow up support that may be required.

The Acquisition and Testing
After acquiring the servers, the testing stage began which concluded we could move forward with a one by one implementation. In the end, following the implementation, once satisfied with the environment, we would decommission the old Exchange 5.5 servers at each site.

The Implementation & Follow up
Beginning with the corporate office, I began the implementation from Exchange 5.5 by upgrading the domain to support the new Windows 2003 domain controllers followed by running the update to Active Directory to support the new Exchange 2003 environment. All of this only needs done once. Now that the schema is up to date, I continued with adding the first Exchange 2003 system followed by creating the required connectors between 5.5 and 2003 as well as moving the mailboxes over to the new Exchange 2003 system.

From there, I went one by one to each site and performed similar migrations at each office until all four were completed. Once finished, mail was routed through the new Exchange 2003 server in Dublin, the connectors to the old environment were removed, front-end services were applied to a new Exchange 2003 Front End server in Dublin and the Exchange 5.5 system were decommissioned. Follow up support requests were very mild and the time quoted for this project was slightly in excess of what time was required.

A broad overall picture of the process in an outlined form is available here for download: [MIGRATE.txt]

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