In this Blog we will discuss the prerequisites for installing exchange server 2016 in the environment. This is a lab environment so we just have a one DC and one server which will host the mailbox server role.
Prerequisite for installing exchange 2016.
- Exchange online server: In short- once Exchange online server is installed; it allows users to preview the attachments within an email- like preview a pdf or a word file. This; as it may sound is a completely optional feature.
- The Active directory: Exchange cannot live without Active directory. AD stores all the user information that echange uses; it further stores all the additional attributes of exchanges that Exchange uses for it's own smooth operation- like any other Microsoft tool that needs to add its own attribute (Like SCCM) exchange 2016 also needs a schema extension before you can actually install exchange on the machine. Here are the list of complete changes that exchange has made in the schema of active directory, https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb738144(v=exchg.160).aspx it's a good to have info- even when you are not going to modify it directly. But that's not only it; once you have modified the schema- you will then have to create the objects with that schema and in case you have multiple domains in your forest like abc.com and xyz.com- you will need to prepare the domain that you want to promote for schema. So while this may look amazingly amusing at once- the actual execution is quite straight forward.
To extend schema, extract the exchange media locally on a file and with the assumption that you have logged in as enterprise admin (you are modifying "THE SCHEMA"); run the following command:
Setup.exe /PrepareSchema /IAcceptExchangeServerLicenseTerms
B. Once the schema is extended you will have to prepare 'Exchange organization' Microsoft documentation says it a collection of all the objects and containers that exchange will use to run itself. It is also the time where you stamp your organization name in exchange. Not that this is of a lot of use or something users will see themselves- none the less; it is important you keep a note that this cannot be changed afterwards; so remember let a responsible person do it in the organization! This command has to be run as a schema admin and on a box that hosts the schema master role. since I have just one domain and DC- I really don't have to care about it. It is important; that this is a forest specific change; so all the Domains must be reachable over LDAP port 389.
Setup.exe /PrepareAD /OrganizationName:"Mayank Xorp" /IAcceptExchangeServerLicenseTerms
C. Prepare the domain
Once you have extended the schema and run prepare AD- you will now have to prepare the domain for the machine, you can skip this step if your forest has just one domain because when you run /PrepareAD; it automatically make the changes in that domain, if you have more domains in the forest and you want to use exchange for all or some of them- here is what you need to do. Though permissions change slightly depending upon if the domain was prepared before or after the /PrepareAD was run- domain Admin account is the one big hammer.
Setup.exe /PrepareDomain:domain.mayank /IAcceptExchangeServerLicenseTerms
Ok so I am not going to cover the hardware and other prerequisites since you are going to have a superior configuration than minimum required and there probably need another blog in itself to discuss the capacity planning. I am going to skip to second part now where we will install the exchange mailbox role.