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Upgrading from Exchange Server 5.5 to Exchange Server 2003

 

Topic Last Modified: 2007-12-20

Published: September 08, 2004

By Kweku Ako-Adjei

So, you're ready to upgrade your organization from Microsoft Exchange Server 5.5 to Exchange Server 2003? Great. Before you get started, however, make sure that you have a solid planning strategy in place, which includes a clear understanding of the software and hardware requirements upon which you will build your messaging system. After you've implemented a plan, you can begin the process of deploying Exchange Server 2003 in your organization.

To help you with these challenges, this article guides you through the recommended upgrading steps, including links to the appropriate documents that will provide detailed information about each stage in the process.

To design a successful Exchange 2003 messaging system, you must first understand the capabilities and limitations of the software and hardware. Specifically, you need to balance the limitations of your network infrastructure with the capabilities of your messaging system, operating system, and user software.

For detailed information about how to develop a strong planning strategy, see Planning a Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 Messaging System.

Before you can upgrade to Exchange Server 2003, your organization must meet certain requirements. For more information about Exchange Server 2003 requirements, see the following resources:

Before deploying Exchange Server 2003, you should familiarize yourself with certain Active Directory and Exchange Server 5.5 directory considerations.

If you are running Microsoft Windows NT Server 4.0 and Exchange Server 5.5, you will need to implement Microsoft Windows 2000 Server Service Pack 3 (SP3) Active Directory directory service or Microsoft Windows Server 2003 Active Directory. For more information about Active Directory design, see Best Practice Active Directory Design for Exchange 2000 in the Microsoft Download Center.

Exchange Server 5.5 has its own directory service, which, by default, cannot communicate with Active Directory and Exchange Server 2003. Once you have completed your Active Directory setup, you can populate Active Directory with user information from your existing directory service. Exchange Server 2003 Active Directory Connector (ADC) is used to allow communication and synchronization between the Exchange Server 5.5 directory and Active Directory.

Active Directory Connector (ADC) synchronizes current mailbox, custom recipient, public folder, and distribution list information from the Exchange Server 5.5 directory to Active Directory user accounts and groups, thereby eliminating the need for re-entering this data in Active Directory. You can download the latest version of ADC, along with the latest Exchange Server 2003 Service Pack, from the Downloads for Exchange Server 2003 page. You can also install the Exchange Server 2003 final version of the ADC from the Exchange Server CD.

Before installing Exchange Server 2003 in your organization, it is important that you are familiar with your organization's security requirements. Familiarizing yourself with these requirements helps ensure that your Exchange Server 2003 deployment is as secure as possible. For more information about planning Exchange Server 2003 security, see:

After developing a well-defined planning strategy, you're ready to upgrade to Exchange Server 2003.

The standard method for deploying Exchange Server 2003 involves joining a new Exchange Server 2003 server to your existing Exchange Server 5.5 organization and moving your Exchange Server data to Exchange Server 2003. You cannot perform an in-place upgrade from Exchange Server 5.5 to Exchange Server 2003. Instead, the recommended method is to install Exchange Server 2003 on a separate server in your Exchange Server 5.5 organization, and then migrate your users and public folders.

Luckily, the Exchange Server 2003 Deployment Tools can help you complete this process.

The Exchange Server Deployment Tools are tools and documentation that help with your deployment and validate that your organization is prepared for the Exchange Server 2003 installation. To ensure that all of the required tools and services are installed and running properly, you are required to run Exchange Server 2003 Setup through the Exchange Server Deployment Tools. Specifically, the Exchange Server Deployment Tools will help you run through Exchange Server 2003 ForestPrep, DomainPrep, and then Exchange Server Setup. You can download the latest version of the tools from the Downloads for Exchange Server 2003 page (http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?linkid=25097).

The Exchange Server Deployment Tools also include the following tools that will help you migrate your Exchange Server 5.5 data to Exchange Server 2003:

  • Active Directory Connector Tool

  • PFMigrate Tool

  • Move Mailbox

The ADC Tool leads you through the process of confirming that your Exchange Server 5.5 directory and mailboxes are ready for migration. ADC Tools are a collection of wizards and utilities that help you set up and configure your connection agreements. ADC Tools are configured to check your organization's configuration and connection agreements and provide a recommendation based on your configuration.

importantImportant:
You should accept the recommendation in Active Directory Connector Tool.

For more information about running the ADC Tools, see "Using Active Directory Connector Tools" in the Exchange Server Deployment Guide.

After you have populated Active Directory with Windows NT 4.0 objects, connected the Exchange Server 5.5 directory to Active Directory, and installed your first Exchange Server 2003 server into the Exchange Server 5.5 organization, your next migration task is to use the Move Mailbox feature and the PFMigrate Tool to move your Exchange Server 5.5 mailbox and public folder contents into the Exchange Server 2003 organization. To use the Move Mailbox feature, run the Exchange Server Task Wizard, and then select the Move Mailbox option.

For more information about moving your mailboxes, see "Using Exchange Server Move Mailbox in Task Wizard" in the Exchange Server Deployment Guide. For more information about the PFMigrate Tool, see "Using Microsoft Exchange Server Public Folder Migration Tool" in the same guide.

Now that you have deployed your Exchange Server 2003 servers and moved your Exchange Server 5.5 data to the new servers, you can switch your organization from mixed mode to native mode. (Running in mixed mode limits the functionality of Exchange Server 2003.) After you switch your Exchange Server 2003 organization from mixed mode to native mode, you cannot switch the organization back to mixed mode. Therefore, before you switch from mixed to native mode, make sure that your Exchange Server 2003 organization will not have to interoperate with Exchange Server 5.5 in the future.

For more information about switching to native mode, see "Switching from Mixed Mode to Native Mode" in the Exchange Server Deployment Guide.

After successfully upgrading your Exchange Server 5.5 organization, you are ready to begin securing, administering and verifying mail-flow in your Exchange Server 2003 organization. For more information, see the following Exchange Server 2003 guides:

 
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