Exchange Server and Windows Server 2008


Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 and Windows Server 2008

The release to manufacturing (RTM) version of Exchange 2007 cannot be installed on Windows Server 2008. However, Exchange 2007 Service Pack 1 will be supported for installation on Windows Server 2008.

While you cannot install Exchange 2007 RTM on Windows Server 2008, Exchange 2007 RTM will be supported with Windows Server 2008 RTM domain controllers. Exchange 2003 Service Pack 2 will be similarly supported: Exchange 2003 cannot be installed on Windows Server 2008, but will be supported with Windows Server 2008 domain controllers.

Please see below for more details and for information about support for pre-release versions of Windows Server 2008 with Exchange.

  • The RTM version of Exchange 2007 and all previous versions of Microsoft Exchange are not supported for installation on a computer running Windows Server 2008.
  • Exchange 2007 SP1 (when released) can be installed on a computer running Windows Server 2008.
  • Management tools for the RTM version of Exchange 2007 and all previous versions of Microsoft Exchange are not supported for installation on a computer running Windows Server 2008 or Windows Vista.
  • Management tools for Exchange 2007 SP1 (when released) can be installed on a computer running Windows Server 2008 or Windows Vista.

Exchange Server and Windows Server 2008 Directory Servers

The following outlines the supported configurations for Exchange 2007 and earlier versions with the RTM version of Windows Server 2008. For customers running pre-release versions of Microsoft Exchange or Windows Server as authorized participants in the a Technology Adoption Program for Microsoft Exchange or Windows Server, current builds of Windows Server 2008 and Service Pack 1 (SP1) for Exchange 2007 are also supported as described below.

  • Exchange Server 2003 Service Pack 2, Exchange 2007, and Exchange 2007 SP1 (when released) are supported in environments that either partly or entirely use writeable Windows Server 2008 directory servers.
  • Exchange 2000 Server Service Pack 3 and all previous versions of Microsoft Exchange are not for use with Windows Server 2008 directory servers. The following restrictions apply with respect to Exchange 2000 Server Service Pack 3:
    • Exchange 2000 Server Service Pack 3 can exist in an Active Directory forest that contains Windows Server 2008 directory servers, but Windows Server 2008 directory servers should not be installed in Active Directory Sites that contain Exchange 2000 Server.
    • If Windows Server 2008 directory servers must be deployed Active Directory Sites that contain Exchange 2000 Server you must first hard-code directory service access (DSAccess) on the Exchange 2000 Server servers in the site to point to directory servers running Windows Server 2003 or Windows 2000 Server.
  • No version of Microsoft Exchange uses read-only domain controllers (RODCs) or read-only global catalog servers (ROGCs). However, Microsoft Exchange works in environments that include RODCs or ROGCs, as long as there are writeable domain controllers available. Exchange 2007 effectively ignores RODCs and ROGCs. Exchange 2003 also ignores RODCs and ROGCs in default conditions where Exchange components automatically detect available domain controllers. No changes were made to Exchange 2003 to make it read-only directory server-aware. Therefore, trying to force Exchange 2003 services and management tools to use RODCs may result in unpredictable behavior.

Upgrading Exchange 2007 from Windows Server 2003 to Windows Server 2008

When upgrading standalone servers, it is not supported to upgrade your operating system to Windows Server 2008 and then upgrade Exchange 2007 to SP1. It is also not supported to upgrade Exchange 2007 to SP1 and then upgrade your operating system 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, and then install Exchange 2007 SP1.

For clustered mailbox servers, Exchange SP1 introduces support for clustered mailbox servers running on Windows Server 2008. However, as a result of the significant changes introduced in Windows Server 2008 failover clusters (called server clusters in previous versions of Microsoft Windows), rolling upgrades of a failover cluster from Windows Server 2003 to Windows Server 2008 are not possible. Therefore, to upgrade a clustered mailbox server from Windows Server 2003 to Windows Server 2008, you must build a new failover cluster using Windows Server 2008 as the operating system for all nodes, and then migrate the data from the old cluster to the new cluster. You can use the Move Mailbox operation to move mailboxes from the old cluster to the new cluster, and you can use public folder replication to move any public folder data from the old cluster to the new cluster.

Known Issues with Exchange Server and Windows Server 2008

The following are known issues when combining legacy versions of Microsoft Exchange with Windows Server 2008:

  • Setting an Exchange 2003 domain Recipient Update Service to use a RODC will succeed, but user accounts will not be updated by the service. It is also possible to force the Active Directory Connector (ADC) service to use an RODC, but this will cause the ADC to function incorrectly.
  • Exchange 2003 may not install correctly in a pure Windows Server 2008 forest if you try to install Exchange in a child domain without installing Exchange in the parent domain.

Scott Schnoll

Comments (33)
  1. lee says:

    This REALLY stinks.  I really don’t want another entire migration similar to the 2003/2007 move.  What’re the odds that the OS team offers some Windows 2003 cluster update that allows them to coexist, so the move could be seamless?

  2. Capslock says:

    If Exchange 2007 virtualised well then this would be less of an issue, as you could swing your mailboxes over to a virtual server temporarily while you rebuild your physical hosts to Windows Server 2008.

    I guess those who have gotten ahead of the curve and moved to Exchange 2007 now on Server 2003 platform are just going to have to work harder to get to a Windows Server 2007/Exchange Server 2007 infrastructure.

  3. PeterRecz says:

    Ouch, we are mid way through a transition from Exch03 to Exch07. For us small businesses who took the plunge early we don’t have the resources to perform another transition.

  4. Robert says:

    Say with me folks, "Don’t install anything until SP1."  C’mon.

  5. bday says:

    Ugh. I really am not in the mood to do another server swing. I was hoping we could update one side of a cluster (2003 –> 2008), then upgrade the other. Blah.

    :)

  6. Ghost Rider says:

    Humm..This might change W2K8 still 6 months away

    Do you think so?

  7. Kenneth Henry says:

    Okay, are we talking about:

    Installing Windows Server 2008

    then Exchange Server 2007

    Then Exchange Server 2007 SP1?

    or will there be Exchange Server 2007 media set with SP1 slipstreamed in?

  8. Dave D says:

    well it will probably allow the install but won’t be "supported" unless you immediately follow with the SP1 upgrade but who knows with the advanced version checking the installers are using now.

  9. bday says:

    The Exchange team has already said that SP1 will actually contain 2007 RTM. When you run it it’ll either upgrade 2007 RTM if it finds it, or install 2007 SP1 right from scratch if it doesn’t find RTM installed on the box.

  10. pesospesos says:

    Is there a rough timeframe for RTM on sp1?  I really need to repurpose my current hardware but I can’t free it up until SP1/win2008 rtm…

  11. Jose Alberto says:

    Hello, this comment isn’t related with the post. But I didn’t found any other way to contact the exchange team . Today I was visiting the site http://exchangeyourcareer.com/ and I found that the address email that appears on ”Contact us” (xcareer@microsoft.com) is not valid or maybe it is wrong.

    Regards

  12. Geert Baeke says:

    Any idea when the release notes for beta 2 will be available? I hope that some issues will be addressed such as the error you get when the client access role gets installed on Windows Server 2008 beta 3. Something goes wrong during new-owavirtualdirectory:

    An error occurred while creating the IIS virtual directory ‘IIS://<servername>/W3SVC/1/ROOT/owa’ on ‘<server>’. The data is invalid (Exception from HRESULT: 0x8007000D)

    Any ideas?

  13. Eric Sabo says:

    Does microsoft even consider that we are running windows 2003 and Exchange 2007, why can’t they come up with an better upgrade path.   Will there be a future service pack for either windows 2008 or Exchange 2007 that will make this upgrade easier?     I cannot believe this, this ruined my day seeing this.     We are currently migrating to Windows 2003/Exchange 2007 now we have to do it all over if we want to get to Windows 2008/Exchange 2007.  Unreal.  

  14. MarkA says:

    Curses, it was all going so well. Slipstreamed the 32bit SP1 into the RTM build and installed it onto a 2008 box. Perfect right up until the /owa directory. Same problem as Geert.

    Now I have to borrow a physical box and see if a 64 bit install set does the same. Alternatively I could just leave it for the weekend and go to the pub.

  15. Exchange says:

    Jose Alberto – thanks, beeing looked into…

  16. Exchange says:

    For those that asked – expected availability of Exchange 2007 SP1 is 4th quarter of 2007.

  17. KC Lemson says:

    Jose Alberto: Thanks for the FYI on that! The site hasn’t officially launched externally yet, so appreciate you catching that before it did. We fixed the attributes on the DL to allow unauthenticated emails and once that change replicates around it should start working.

    Feel free to send me any other feedback on the site directly – kclemson AT Microsoft DOT com.

  18. chef says:

    I have the same exact error as Geert

  19. Exchange 2007 SP1 will be support integration in to Exchange 2007 RTM?

    …setup on Windows Server 2008 and Exchange 2007 its like installing Exchange 2003 on Windows Server 2003 SP1, ignore warning continiu installiation and then installing exchange Exchange SP?

  20. Geezergeek says:

    I am trying to install the 2007 Exchange

    (64) Edge transport server role on a

    2008 (64) Server. it wants me to install

    Powershell and i cant get it to install.

    any help?

  21. WoodburyIT says:

    Same thing here. Exchange 2007 SP1 setup insists on Powershell installation. Installing RTM version of PowerShell does not work. Trying to install specific longhorn version located at

    http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=14f411a5-04e2-4f1d-806d-2019baec1b51&displaylang=en&Hash=Tl284UMlZAwNLTPEm6En29N2LNW1a0DuOEc2%2f261OHQjgt%2bs1PRe7cBNHSR4A06HOmfIww12dYFUX3%2bQbK0RTA%3d%3d

    does not work either.

    help help

  22. WoodburyIT says:

    GeezerGeek:

    You need to go to Server manager, Features and then you need to add feature called Windows PowerShell

  23. Answer to my question

    …or you can perform a clean installation of Exchange 2007 SP1 Beta 2.

  24. WoodburyIT says:

    yes You can simply run setup from Exchange 2007 SP1 beta 2. You do not need to install RTM first. Think of Beta2 as slipstream of RTM + SP1

  25. rMh says:

    I don’t know why this hasn’t been asked already. But is there any features that Windows Server 2008 will give to Exchange 2007 that make it worth the wait if you are already in the process of a migration on Server 2003 ?

    I don’t know about other environments but we cannot just upgrade to the latest Server version without some real beenfits it will give us. The cost of Windows 2008 Cals itself makes it a hard one to sell.

    Thanks

  26. Brandon says:

    In regards to high availibility and the CA and HUB roles on the same box, will this be supported with SP1?

    (eg Two servers each with CA and HUB roles, NLB for the CA role)

    This technet post seems to indicate so, but I can’t seem to find anything more official: http://forums.microsoft.com/TechNet/ShowPost.aspx?PostID=1397069&SiteID=17

  27. Exchange says:

    RobertK and others that have asked:

    Windows PowerShell on Windows Server 2008 can be installed by adding that feature under server features or simply running

    ServerManagerCmd -i PowerShell

  28. Nathan says:

    I have desperately tried to install Exchange SP1 Beta 2 on Server 2008 but stumbled at the same point as others. When installing the Client Access role it fails creating the owa directory as posted above. Has anyone found the fix for this yet?

  29. randy says:

    Also in the middle of my project plan. Purchased three new x64 bit servers, registered for a 3 day Microsoft Premier Windows 2003 clustering class and planned full migration in November. This now changes my plans completely. I will probably wait until May 2008 to implement. Not being able to upgrade the CAS-Hub server and the cluster mailbox server to 2008 is painful.

    Thanks for the heads up.

  30. what has happened to your service says:

    I can no longer gent online with your mess…Microsoft exchange server states we have no service….but my phone line company states the problem is on your end… so please help me or let me go…charles

  31. Windows hosting says:

    Thanks for the information. I really enjoyed reading the article. You have coverd almost all points regarding Windows Exchange Server and its upgrades.

  32. Raz says:

    I personally believe that tying the Exchange Directory Service into the OS was a major mistake. This is what causes the upgrade nightmare and means that the exchange team need to update their software every time the OS is updated. BUT I think this was done on purpose as it forces people to upgrade every time they make a change to one of the products. More money for MS.

  33. Lim says:

    I agreed on Raz, I don’t find any benefits to upgrade my exchange 2007 server O/S to Windows 2008.

    Quato:

    I personally believe that tying the Exchange Directory Service into the OS was a major mistake. This is what causes the upgrade nightmare and means that the exchange team need to update their software every time the OS is updated. BUT I think this was done on purpose as it forces people to upgrade every time they make a change to one of the products. More money for MS.

Comments are closed.