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Upgrading Exchange 2003

A company that I am working for has Exchange 5.5, which is installed on the NT4.0 primary domain controller (PDC). They do not have any backup domain controllers. They would like to upgrade to Exchange 2003, which requires a Windows 2003 Domain. How would you recommend I do this? Can I do an inplace upgrade of the Exchange/PDC to Windows 2003?

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While there is an in-place upgrade for NT 4.0 to Windows 2003, it is usually not recommended unless you are very small. Exchange, however, does not support an in-place upgrade from 5.5 to 2003. It is also likely that you are running on old hardware and this presents an opportunity to acquire new equipment that will last three or more years. With this available, you can migrate your user accounts with ADMT (Active Directory Migration Tool), synchronize the directories with ADC (Active Directory Connector) and then migrate the mailboxes and public folders with other tools provided. Exchange 2003 includes the Exchange Deployment Tool (ExDeploy), which will walk you through the steps.

This was first published in May 2004

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