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We have Microsoft Exchange 2010 running under Windows Server 2008 R2 Standard. We would like to migrate to Windows Server Enterprise so that we can set up a DAG (the Exchange version will remain the same (2010 Standard)). Additionally, the hardware for this server is getting old.

What we would like to do as a first step is replicate the current Exchange setup/configuration on new hardware (already purchased) running 2008-R2 Enterprise. For the mailbox portion, we plan to use Exchange's "Mailbox Move" feature. But what we are struggling with is how to copy all the settings and configuration from the old server to the new?

Over the years, we've made various tweaks and and such to filters, policies, etc. How can we ensure that the new server retains all of our customizations? The configuration is the sum of many menus, sub-menus, dialogs, tabs, buttons, etc etc... if we try to replicate these settings by hand, it seems likely that we will miss something.

I can't imagine we are the first people to face this problem. Is there a built-in facility in Exchange that we've overlooked that supports what we want to do? Or maybe a 3rd party application we could buy?

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Most of these settings are likely stored in the Registry. Can you perform an in place upgrade of the OS version, and then perhaps perform a P2V virtualization of the computer, and run it within a Hypervisor? That is assuming there isn't a product to perform the settings migration for you, which there very well may be. I am just thinking of ways you can keep your config. This is the very reason I dislike the windows Registry.

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Most of the settings and configuration is actually stored in Active Directory. – joeqwerty Mar 11 '13 at 21:58

Most Settings you mentioned are stored in Active Directory. Simply install the new Server with Enterprise Edition and move the mailboxes. Your connectors and Policies will be there by itself. But you have to take care of the Filters you modified. After all mailboxes are moved you should uninstall exchange from the old server. The uninstall wizard takes care of all Functions that have not been migrated yet.

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The only problem with that is we want to leave the old server untouched for at least a few days after deploying the new server. This is to provide us with a contingency for reverting back to the old server in case something goes horribly wrong. – Matt Mar 13 '13 at 15:13
up vote 0 down vote accepted

The information at the following link seems to cover most of what we want to do, "Export and Compare Exchange 2010 Server Settings" from February 17, 2011:

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