Migrating Exchange 2007 to 2010 - Need a guide!

Hello,

We are going to upgrade our current Exchange 2007 SP3 servers to 2010 in the near future.
I don't know anything about Exchange, but I'm going to do the project after researching it and doing a test migration in a lab.
Can anyone recommend a good book on how to perform this process?

Comments

  • undomielundomiel Posts: 2,818Member
    This is always a good resource Exchange Server 2013: Exchange 2013 Help
    This checklist is always a good idea to keep handy as well Checklist: Upgrading from Exchange 2007: Exchange 2010 Help

    You'll definitely want to go through a test migration in a lab. There are several steps that are easy to trip up on such as proper certificate creation, public folder replication, X500 addresses and even simple mail flow. Make sure you have your current setup properly documented and a strategy in place to back out as well. DO NOT skip the step of an AD backup prior to beginning the migration. I have seen that one come back to bite many an engineer.
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  • sratakhinsratakhin Posts: 818Member
    Undomiel, since I have zero experience with Exchange, is it worth skipping Exchange 2010 and just wait for 2013? In the meantime, I could read more about different versions and play with migrations in a lab.
  • undomielundomiel Posts: 2,818Member
    I would say focus in on 2010 for now. Many of the concepts will port over to 2013. It will also give time for Microsoft to build up more documentation on how to work with and troubleshoot the new search engine. It is pretty irritating to find 2013 shipped with scripts that haven't been updated to support it.
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  • ClaymooreClaymoore Posts: 1,637Member
    Full disclosure: I work for a Microsoft partner as a consultant in the messaging practice.

    The link to the Exchange Deployment Assistant that Undomiel posted is the best place to see the entire migration plan. There are additional links to Technet articles that explain the steps more in depth, if you want to learn the 'why' along with the 'how'.

    Since you have zero experience with Exchange, I recommend you contact a partner and bring in a consultant to perform your migration. Maybe not the full migration of all the mailboxes, but definitely to handle the design, build and test phases. As an Exchange consultant, migrations are what we do. Nobody is going to bring me in at my rates to babysit their Exchange server for 6 months, but they'll have me around for a few weeks to build out a stable, new environment for them. Even people who administer Exchange every day do not get much experience with the migrations - They might do one every 3 years, meanwhile I am working on my 3rd migration already this year.
  • ptilsenptilsen Posts: 2,835Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    If you are doing a migration that is remotely complicated, it's not bad advice to bring in a consultant.

    However, a smaller business with a fairly simple design and few servers should find the 2007 to 2010 upgrade path easy. Microsoft's guidelines make the whole process pretty straightforward, and you can actually call up support and have them walk you through the whole thing for the price of an incident, which is frankly going to be cheaper than most consultants even if you sit on the phone for ten hours.

    As far as skipping 2010, it should depend on what you expect 2010 to do for you. If you're upgrading just to be on the latest version, then I do think waiting for 2013 makes more sense. If there is a business incentive to get on 2010, then I probably wouldn't wait. Exchange 2007 still works well enough and still receives official support, so I wouldn't upgrade it to either just for the sake of upgrading.
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  • sratakhinsratakhin Posts: 818Member
    I think it won't hurt for me to get some Exchange experience.
    Our environment is really small, but the Exchange setup is more complicated than it should be.
    I'll probably do P2V of all Exchange servers and a DC, put them on an isolated network, and try to do the migration without touching the production servers. If it works, I'll feel more comfortable doing it myself or at least with some help from Microsoft.
    What should I look out for?

    As far as bringing in a consultant... How much would it approximately cost to do this project? We have four servers configured in who-knows-how cluster with less than 500 users.
  • ptilsenptilsen Posts: 2,835Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    Consultants generally cost more than $100/hr. The MSP I worked for would bill me out for $140-$180/hr for an Exchange migration. I can't speak for Claymoore's firm, but I also can't imagine it being less than $100/hr. Even if they can do it twice as fast as you, it should be significantly cheaper to do it yourself.
    Working B.S., Computer Science
    Complete: 55/120 credits SPAN 201, LIT 100, ETHS 200, AP Lang, MATH 120, WRIT 231, ICS 140, MATH 215, ECON 202, ECON 201, ICS 141, MATH 210, LING 111, ICS 240
    In progress: CLEP US GOV,
    Next up: MATH 211, ECON 352, ICS 340
  • sratakhinsratakhin Posts: 818Member
    That's the price range in my area from what I heard. But I'm more interested in how many hours this project could take. Of course, thing may not go as well as expected, but what's the approximate time? Oh yes, the size of the database is about 300 GB.
  • ptilsenptilsen Posts: 2,835Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    Honestly, it's been at least a year since I've sized an Exchange migration and about as long since I've executed one, and there are more factors than you've provided. It would be irresponsible for me to give you even a ballpark. Maybe someone else feels comfortable based on what we know thus far.

    Plus, hours of actual labor and how long the migration actually takes are both separate factors to consider. For example, I might devote a weekend to moving one mailbox server over, but only spend a few hours of actual work. With most migrations, especially Exchange migrations, one spends a lot of time waiting. How responsibly one consultant bills you or how you use your own time may well be different. I would typically not bill at all for checking up on progress while I did other things. I've known others who will go on-site, sit in front of the server, do nothing while waiting for 90 minutes of progress bars, then bill you for the whole thing.

    Also, many companies will also just give you a flat cost and bill you that no matter what it takes.
    Working B.S., Computer Science
    Complete: 55/120 credits SPAN 201, LIT 100, ETHS 200, AP Lang, MATH 120, WRIT 231, ICS 140, MATH 215, ECON 202, ECON 201, ICS 141, MATH 210, LING 111, ICS 240
    In progress: CLEP US GOV,
    Next up: MATH 211, ECON 352, ICS 340
  • sratakhinsratakhin Posts: 818Member
    Thanks, that helps!
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