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I was paged early this morning for a dead mail server, the upshot is that the Windows Server install is dead. I've booted the box with the Windows UBCD and have been able to get the database and logs copied onto the network.

What I need is a start to finish guide (or just helpful tips) for building an Exchange 2003 server using the existing database that I have.

I know that Microsoft have a couple of white papers on the subject but for some reason my Google skillz appear to be failing me today.

All help greatly appreciated!

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

I think you need to rebuild Exchange using the /disasterrecovery switch

An overview and the Operations Guide

It appears that the guide from has some more detailed steps

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If memory serves you need to be sure that you install and patch Exchange to the same level as the failed server as well – Paul D'Ambra Sep 16 '10 at 17:33
That sounds familiar, Paul. Even if it's not required, I'd certainly recommend it – Ben Quick Sep 17 '10 at 7:53

The highlights: Install Exchange on another server. Run eseutil on the DB to be sure it's consistent (I assume the last server didn't gracefully shutdown); repair if necessary (make sure you have a backup copy). Create a Recovery Storage Group, point it to the old database. Mount the DBs in the SG. Use the Mailbox Recovery Center under Tools to associate users with Mailboxes again.

It's fairly easy, I'll see if I can find a better step-by-step guide...

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