Exchange Support For Windows Server 2016

Windows Server 2016 And Exchange SupportWindows Server 2016 is available, and it is now supported to install Exchange 2016 onto this version of Windows.  Initially this was not the case.  Exchange 2016 CU3 added support to install Exchange 2016 onto Windows Server 2016.  However, there was an issue with Windows which required based installations to be paused.  The required fix has been released by the Windows team in KB3206632.  This update is required on Windows 2016 servers with Exchange 2016 installed.  Exchange 2016 CU4 will check if the update is installed, and will block the install if KB3206632 is missing.

Do not perform an in-place upgrade to the OS on your Exchange servers.  Over the years there have been issues and lots of posts in the TechNet forums where people have run into some challenges when they have upgraded the OS in place to a new version Windows Server.  Unfortunately there is not much that can be done to help as this is not a supported solution at this time.

Walking The Supported Path

TechNet documents the Exchange Product Group’s supported OS for each version of Exchange.  Here are the links for your convenience:

System Requirements Supportability Matrix
2007 Consolidated Single Page

Note that the supportability matrix has been condensed into a single page that includes all versions.

Update 23-3-2017 – Note the change to Edge role support as noted in Exchange Server Edge Support on Windows Server 2016 Update

Update 19-6-2018 - Note that Exchange 2010 SP3 RU22 added support for Windows Server 2016 Domain Controllers.

Currently Supported Operating Systems

TechNet documents the below at the time of writing (December 2016) as supported Operating Systems for Exchange.  Note that only Exchange 2016 CU3 onwards is supported to be installed onto Windows Server 2016.

Exchange Support For Windows Server 2016 - Currently Supported OS

To reinforce the point of using only what is explicitly stated in the table, there is an additional note that the client OS are only supported for management tool installation.  For Windows 10, only Exchange 2016 management tools are supported.

Currently Supported Active Directory Environments

TechNet documents the below at the time of writing as supported Active Directory Environments for Exchange

Active Directory Support For Exchange

Forest and Domain Function Level Support For Exchange

You will note that Windows Server 2016 is listed as a supported OS platform for Exchange.  In addition to this please also note that Windows Server 2016 is listed as supported Domain Controllers.

I didn’t list Exchange 2003 as hopefully no one out there is going to be trying that on Windows Server 2016. *

Update 14-12-2016 Updated article to reflect the current support position, and to also include references to the required update when Exchange 2016 is installed onto Windows Server 2016.  The previous version of this post will not be preserved as it contains now out-dated information that was only of relevance when Exchange was not supporting installation onto Windows Server 2016.



* – Bonus points though if you still can find the CDs!

Comments (35)
  1. Menko says:

    Nice tables! And wow, I remember from not that long ago, upgrading Exchange 2000 to 2003 to 2010.. 😉

  2. Bookmarked this.


  3. Augusto Juca says:

    Hello, Im in doubt about AD compatibility because the information at has a problem at Supported Active Directory environments table.
    When it is shown in English, it shows that Windows Server 2016 Active Directory arent supported for Exchange 2010 neither 2007. But when you change the language for German or other language that isnt English, it inform that Windows Server 2016 Active Directory are supported for Exchange 2007 and 2010. So what is the right information ? Do someone know ?

  4. Muhammad Usman says:

    I have deployed exchange server 2016 on windows server 2016 but i am unable to get it configured. Scenario is like i have my domain name externally hosted with godaddy i.e. I have dns for my intranet users with the same name Exchange 2016 is installed and all set but when i login and try to send email it goes in draft and says we are not ready yet please try again later. Please support for resolution how can i put my exchange 2016 in working condition.


    1. Ensure you also have the latest OS updates installed, and that Exchange 2016 CU4 is also used.

      it is then a matter of looking through the application and system event logs to see what is going on. The symptoms tell me the submission service is not running or working.


  5. zahed sohail says:

    Hello Rhoderick,
    I have to implement exchange 2016 in xyz.local domain, they have domain hosted…

    The requirement is to just make setup with this, not renaming the domain from xyz.local to

    How should I proceed and where i need to make changes in DNS & records. What additional records need to be created and where..

    Also what about SSL certificate,? Shall I start with .local and redirect in DNS from to xyz.local and what ssl cert should i purchase ( with Domain name ) .

    Please kindly provide me all necessary additional steps that need to be done based on this requirement( in terms of DNS / Redirection from to xyz.local) & DNS records on Internet hosting, SSL certificate.



    1. zahed sohail says:

      Also I have 3 child domains in it. ( / / how about the users within it in terns of exchange emails & addressed, mailflow.

      How about SSL, can I go for purchasing SSL certificate with just external name.

      for your reference:

      ZAHED Sohail

    2. Hi Zahed,

      This is not something to get into in a comments discussion, this is a detailed discussion with the business and consultants.

      We do recommend split DNS; and where possible using the same namespaces internally and externally.

      Certificates to be from a trusted CA.


  6. Zakir says:

    Hello and Greetings,
    Does domain controller 2016 with domain and forest functional level 2008 R2 support exchange 2007 SP3?


    1. No – Exchange 2007 SP3 is leaving support in a couple of weeks. The matrix does not show this as supported.

      You must upgrade and transition off Exchange 2007 ASAP.


      1. Zakir says:

        Thank you Rhoderick.
        I have already promoted a 2016 DC with 2008 FFL and DFL and it works perfect.
        I need to migrate from exchange 2007 to 2013 but one of the existing Exchange server is SP2; while upgrading it to SP3 it fails and following weird error prompts “Value cannot be null. Parameter name: objectid”
        I am confused with what could be the cause? and any solution for that?


        1. SP2 – oh my 🙁

          Look at the setup log on the C:\ drive – that will tell you what is going on.


          1. Zakir says:

            Thank you Rhoderick for the quick responses, I am sorry to ask log related questions here but I have no other choice.
            below is a part of log for exchange and I couldn’t figure out the exact problem:

            SNIP – Rhoderick
            removed rather long log extract. I saw this on the TechNet forums, where the issue can be worked.

  7. Burak says:


    are there any plans to support Exchange 2013 on Windows Server 2016?


    1. None that I have seen.


      1. Tesla says:

        Hello, I have an Exchange 2010 SP3 environment and would like to introduce Server 2016 Domain Controllers. I placed a ticket with Premier Support and they confirmed that Exchange 2010 SP3 and 2016 Domain Controllers are supported. Can you please confirm?

        1. Where is that listed in the support matrix?

          Feel free to send me the ticket # – use the contact blog author above.


          1. Testla says:

            Thank you Rhoderick, I sent you an email.

            1. Got it, thanks! – following up with the DS support person you were talking to.


          2. Michael says:

            This is my scenario as well. Were you able to confirm it?

            1. I have still not heard back from the DS support person.

              From an Exchange perspective, I have seen no changes on this.


        2. Olivier B says:

          Hi . Did you get any news about the highly requested scenario : coexistence between Exchange 2010 servers and Active Directory 2016 Domain Controllers?

          1. I’ll review that thread – thanks!


  8. Jerry says:

    Hi Rhoderick, can an AD schema upgrade to Windows Server 2016 be done manually through command prompt (adprep) without actually introducing new 2016 DCs and without breaking Exchange 2010? I understand the 2016 DCs aren’t supported but not sure if extending the AD schema is. I need this for a new AD FS 2016 Farm which requires the Active Directory 2016 Schema (minimum version 85). If not, are there any plans to allow this with a future update rollup? Thank you.

  9. Leungcha kwan says:

    am using office 2016 for mac and OS 10.11.2. When I open an excisting .xlsx file which is located on our server (Windows server 2016) excel makes automatically a temporary empty folder on the same directory. I allready turned off the auto recover option (to see if this helps, but it didn’t solved it.

    I don’t have the problem with a .xls file and I also don’t have the problem when opening a .xlsx file local.

    Is there a solution for this problem? We are planning to upgrade the server asap, does anybody know f that will solve the problem?he problem). and I have try to switch off the anti virus, Start Excel and try open the file via File > Open, and reinstall office , and I am using OSX10.11 with office 2011 and OSX10.12 With office 2016, the issue still continue, so in this case , do you have the solution ?

    1. I don’t do MACs Leungcha – best to open a support case.


  10. Ryan says:

    Can a 2008 domain controller run with a 2016 domain controller and Exchange 2007 SP3 for the short term until exchange 2007 sp3 and the 2008 domain controller get properly decommisioned?

    1. Hi Ryan,

      That combination is not in the Exchange support matrix.


  11. Grimson says:

    We can expect many SBS2011 migrations to O365 and a local Windows Server 2016 DC so my ‘problem’ is:
    Exchange 2010 does not support Windows Server 2016 Domain Controllers but:

    If you configure Exchange 2010 to talk to (itself for SBS2011 or a specific < 2016 DC) like:
    Set-ExchangeServer -identity DC2008R2-StaticDomainControllers
    Set-ExchangeServer -identity DC2008R2-StaticGlobalCatalogs

    Is this scenario supported?

    Otherwise, am I reading that talking to a 2016 DC is not supported but when you statically change Exchange 2010 talking to < 2016 DC's in your domain also with Windows Server 2016 DC's is supported or not?? 🙂 Now it looks like you might have mixed DC's but Exchange 2010 is only not supported to talk to the 2016 DC's.

    1. Hi,

      No that does not change the support stance. No 2016 DCs.


      1. Jim Satterfield says:

        As I am reading the matrix, combined with other posts I’ve found if I set my 2016 DC to a DFL of 2012 R2 and Exchange 2010 is installed on a Server 2008 in the domain I should be OK. Is that correct?

        1. Testla says:

          I would like to know this as well. I have a case where I have 2016 DC’s and have Exchange 2010 statically pointing to the 2008 R2 DC’s. According to Tim (MS) as long as the Forest stays at 2012R2 or below we should be OK?

          1. From the Exchange perspective, no 2016 DCs are listed in the support matrix.


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