Microsoft Hybrid Agent Preview Update


As you are aware, we released the Microsoft Hybrid Agent for Exchange Server as a preview on Feb. 5th, 2019. The blog post for that release is located here.

We have been busy working on a few improvements for the Hybrid Agent over that past two months and wanted to let you know of some new features now available in the latest build of the Hybrid Configuration Wizard.

The three enhancements for the Hybrid Agent are:

  1. Multi Agent installation and configuration
  2. Agent status views
  3. Registration/Usage of a load balancer for the internal URL instead of a specific Exchange Client Access Server

Multi Agent Deployment

Option 1 – Use the Hybrid Configuration Wizard to install additional agents

For existing Hybrid Agent preview customers who would like to install additional Hybrid Agents for redundancy, simply download the latest version of the Hybrid Configuration Wizard (HCW) and open the application on the machine where you would like to install an additional Hybrid Agent.

  1. Like previous HCW runs, start the application, select Next.
  2. Select a desired server to execute against, select Next.
  3. Provide credentials to sign into your Office 365 tenant, select Next.
  4. The HCW will gather configuration information, select Next when complete.
  5. Select the default option provided for either Full or Minimal, select Next.
  6. Select Exchange Modern Hybrid Topology, Next.
  7. Agree to the Terms, Next.
  8. A new page will be shown that will provide you with the status of your existing / previously installed agent. Make sure the status of the existing agent is accurate before proceeding to the next step. Select Install and additional agent option, Next.

Example:

HyAgentUpd1

The HCW will install the additional Hybrid Agent. When the installation is complete, you can open the Microsoft Windows Services console from the machine and verify the service / agent is installed and running (look for Microsoft Hybrid Service - mshybridsvc). At that point, you can either re-run HCW if you wish to make further changes to your hybrid config, or simply cancel the wizard.

You can repeat this step on each machine where you would like an additional Hybrid Agent installed.

Option 2 – Manually download & install additional agents

A second option for installing additional agents is outside the HCW itself and is done by downloading and manually installing the agent on the desired machine.

  1. Go to https://aka.ms/hybridagentinstaller.
  2. Save the MSHybridService.msi to a location on your machine.
  3. From that machine, open a Windows Command console as Administrator and run:
  4. Msiexec /i MSHybridService.msi to install the hybrid agent. You will be prompted for your tenant Global Admin credentials.
  5. After the installation is complete, you can open the Microsoft Windows Services console from the machine and verify the service / agent is installed and running.

You can repeat this step on each machine where you would like an additional Hybrid Agent installed.

Checking the Status of Your Hybrid Agents

Option 1 – Get status via the Hybrid Configuration Wizard (HCW)

  1. Start the HCW application, select Next.
  2. Select a server in your Exchange org, select Next.
  3. Provide credentials to sign into your Office 365 tenant, select Next.
  4. The HCW will gather configuration information, select Next when complete.
  5. Select default option provided for either Full or Minimal, select Next.
  6. Select Exchange Modern Hybrid Topology, Next.
  7. Agree to the Terms, Next.
  8. A new page will be shown that will provide you with the status of your existing installed agents.

HyAgentUpd2

Cancel the HCW app when you are done.

Option 2 – Get status via the Hybrid Management PowerShell Module

With each installation of the Hybrid Agent, we install the Hybrid Management PowerShell module in the directory …\Program Files\Microsoft Hybrid Service\ on the machine where the agent is installed. By default, this module is not imported and so you will need to import it before you can use it. This module also requires the Azure module for PowerShell if not already installed. Please install the PackageManagement modules first and then see this article for how to install the Azure module.

To import the Hybrid Management module, run the following from a Windows PowerShell prompt as Administrator:

Import-module .\HybridManagement.psm1

After that you can run:

Get-HybridAgent -credential (get-credential) to view agent status:

HyAgentUpd3

Note: the ‘id’ value provided in the above snip is the agent identity and not your unique tenant guid assigned to the route.

Directing your Hybrid Agent(s) to the load balancer instead of a specific server

If you would like your Hybrid Agent(s) to direct requests to your load balancer instead of a specific Exchange Client Access Server, this can be done with the Hybrid Management PowerShell module. In preview, the Hybrid Agent supports routing requests to the load balancer for Exchange Server 2013 – 2019 Client Access Servers. You cannot use this if you only have Exchange Server 2010 CAS deployed.

Follow the steps above to import the Hybrid Management module for PowerShell.

From PowerShell, then simply use the Update-HybridApplication cmdlet to change the value of the internalURL (targetURI parameter) from a specific server to your load balancer endpoint.

Before running this cmdlet you will need to get the unique guid value (e.g. 12345678-1234-1234-1234-1111111111111) of your tenant’s endpoint from either your MRS configuration or the Organization Relationship object (TargetSharingEPR). Example:

PS C:\PowerShell> Get-OrganizationRelationship ((Get-OnPremisesOrganization).OrganizationRelationship) | Select-Object TargetSharingEpr
TargetSharingEpr
----------------
https://e399b770-3b66-407b-a71a-96ef80a67714.resource.mailboxmigration.his.msappproxy.net/EWS/Exchange.asmx

Or

PS C:\PowerShell> Get-MigrationEndpoint "Hybrid Migration Endpoint - EWS (Default Web Site)" | Select-Object RemoteServer
RemoteServer
------------
e399b770-3b66-407b-a71a-96ef80a67714.resource.mailboxmigration.his.msappproxy.net

To be clear, the ID parameter required in this cmdlet is not the agent ID, but the guid listed in your custom registered endpoint retrieved using the method above.

Example:

HyAgentUpd4

We really hope you are enjoying and benefitting from using the Hybrid Agent. We see a lot of usage and we’re working hard to improve it all the time.

Thank you!

Exchange Hybrid Team

Comments (6)

  1. Garry Gra says:

    Do you plan to add calendar view in MS Teams in exchange hybrid with on-prem mailbox?

  2. qu0vad1s says:

    Are we now able to use the wizard to use this preview if we’ve already ran the wizard once? Really looking forward to be able to convert a few instances for my clients that have issues in the past with hybrid deployments.

    1. Nino Bilic says:

      If by this you mean if you can run the wizard and ‘convert’ previously setup hybrid to Hybrid Agent, then the answer to that is no; that has not yet changed. This new update has those 3 specific features (as discussed).

      1. Gaz___ says:

        Hi Nino,

        Can we expect this functionality in the near future?

        1. We’re still considering whether it makes sense or not. If a customer is already Hybrid then changing to use the Agent doesn’t really buy them anything. But thanks for the feedback. We’ll keep it in mind.

  3. Game changer!
    Now how about other products like Teams > Exchange EWS? are these other services working or just F/B and MRS moves?
    Thanks!

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