Microsoft Exchange: Which Windows Server Operating System Is Required?



Written by Cheng Pei Koay, Microsoft Premier Field Engineer


Exchange Server LogoMicrosoft Exchange 2010 Service Pack 1 (SP1) has been available since September 2010 and this new release helps IT Professionals to achieve new levels of reliability with greater flexibility, enhanced user experiences and increased protection for business communication.

There are a lot of questions that arise for customers who want to install either Exchange 2007 SP1 or Exchange 2007 SP2 on their current Windows Server 2008 R2. Some errors that may surface during installation include:

Exchange Server 2007 SP3 provides further flexibility with the addition of Windows Server 2008 R2 support for server roles and Windows 7 support for the Exchange management tools. The key point before performing any upgrade/installation activities is to make sure you’re running at the supported Server OS Service Pack level before you install Exchange.

Here’s a handy table which maps the supported Exchange version to the required Windows Server Operating System:

Exchange Version

Server OS Supported for Installation

Exchange 2003

·         Windows 2000 Server SP4

·         Windows Server 2003 (All SP levels and R2)

Exchange 2007 RTM

·         Windows Server 2003 SP1 + SP2 (inc R2)

Exchange 2007 SP1

·         Windows Server 2003 SP1 + SP2 (inc R2)

·         Windows Server 2008 RTM

Exchange 2007 SP2

·         Windows Server 2003 SP1 + SP2 (inc R2)

·         Windows Server 2008 RTM

Exchange 2007 SP3

·         Windows Server 2003 SP1 + SP2 (inc R2)

·         Windows Server 2008 RTM

·         Windows Server 2008 R2

Exchange 2010 RTM

·         Windows Server 2008 RTM

·         Windows Server 2008 R2

Exchange 2010 SP1

·         Windows Server 2008 RTM

·         Windows Server 2008 R2

Note that “RTM” stands for “Release to Manufacturing” and represents the initial version of the product, prior to the introduction of any fixes and/or Services Packs.

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