Source server is SBS 2003, called sbs

Destination server is SBS 2011, called sbs11

Everything ran swimmingly, the migration went well.

However, when my users log into Outlook, the Exchange address field still says 'sbs' not 'sbs11' and it isn't alterable.

How do I tell Outlook where the new server is. The old server is already uninstalled and decommisioned, per the migration instructions.


Like Twisty stated, your Outlook clients need to be told what to do. Exchange 2003 would tell your clients where their new home is. But because you pulled the old server, they cannot get those instructions.

If your migration went properly, you'll just need to pull out the old exchange address from Control Panel. Once that's done, open Outlook. If auto-discover is set correctly, user details will auto fill, so you'll just be next/next till Outlook opens. Exchange will start to populate their account.

  • You say "Pull out the old address from Control Panel" - you mean the Mail control panel applet? – Bill Sempf Aug 17 '15 at 15:02
  • Oh, and do you have a good reference on setting Auto-Discover 'correctly'? I have failed to find that. – Bill Sempf Aug 17 '15 at 15:03
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    @Bill, EPAD is offering the same solution given in my answer, just worded differently. You can't "pull out" the wrong Exchange server, you have to recreate the Outlook profile by deleting it and then going back through Outlook's profile set up wizard. During profile creation Outlook automatically queries Active Directory to get the correct Exchange server name and other details. – Twisty Impersonator Aug 17 '15 at 17:50

When migrating from Exchange on SBS 2003 to 2011, you must leave the old Exchange server running until all instances of Outlook have been started and had the chance to update their settings. Only then can you decommission the old server.

This is because the client Outlook profile update process goes something like this (from my memory):

  1. Outlook starts and contacts old server
  2. Old server/Active Directory notifies client of new server address
  3. Outlook updates profile to point to new server

Since the old server has been removed from your environment, this is no longer possible.

You'll need to delete and recreate your user's Outlook profiles. When you go to add the user's "new" profile, Outlook will query Active Directory and find the new Exchange server.


I hate answering my own question.

As so often with Microsoft server software, I'm not totally certain how I solved the problem, but I didn't have to delete profiles, not did the details autofill.

I found that CompanyWeb wasn't working, and as it turned out, we have a number of DNS issues that pointed to the old server (which was now in mothballs). After I fixed those issues, and rebooted the clients, the Exchange Address field in the Mail control panel was editable. I changed it to the DNS name of the new server and everything was fine.

To anyone who runs into this later - I hope you are so lucky.

  • +1 for figuring out that DNS issues were involved! – Twisty Impersonator Aug 22 '15 at 0:48

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