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Five Exchange 2013 migration gotchas to watch for

By Steve  Goodman, SearchExchange.TechTarget.com

Exchange Server 2013 is a bigger, more complex platform that leaves behind some of the legacy Exchange features in favor of new ones along with better overall reliability. Before upgrading to the latest version, it's important that you're aware of a few factors that will help ensure a successful migration.

Exchange 2013 migration gotcha #1: Clients

Just as Exchange 2010 removed support for Outlook 2000, Exchange 2013 removes support for Outlook 2003. When it comes to Exchange 2013, you must use Outlook 2007, Outlook 2010 or Outlook 2013. Outlook 2007 must run Service Pack 3 along with the November 2012 update or later, while Outlook 2010 must run Service Pack 1 along with the November 2012 update or later.

When patching clients, consider Windows Server Update Services. You can also use the Microsoft Assessment and Planning toolkit, as well as the Get-LogonStatistics cmdlet in Exchange 2007 and the Exchange Server User Monitor (ExMon) in Exchange 2010.

And it's not just Outlook you need to worry about. With Exchange 2007, users could experience Outlook Web Access in all its glory with a version of Internet Explorer as low as IE6. In Exchange 2010, the minimum version required to experience the Premium Outlook Web App is IE7. Therefore, it shouldn't surprise anyone that IE8 is necessary for Exchange 2013. At the time of writing, however, IE8 suffers from performance issues when running Outlook Web App 2013, so consider IE9 the baseline. It will give users the best OWA 2013 experience on Vista and above.

For Windows XP and other operating systems, third-party browsers like Firefox (v17+), Chrome (v24+) and Safari (v6+ on Mac) also provide great support for Exchange 2013. Check out the table of supported clients on Microsoft's TechNet site for the most up-to-date information.

Exchange 2013 migration gotcha #2: Outlook Web App redirection

This one affects companies migrating from Exchange 2007 that use forms-based authentication (FBA) within Exchange. Previously, when a company migrated from Exchange 2003 or Exchange 2007 to Exchange 2010, legacy coexistence with FBA worked very well. When a user logged into OWA, he was redirected to the legacy server, and the username and password were passed along with the redirection request.

In a coexistence scenario with Exchange 2007 and Exchange 2013 (using FBA) the username and password are not passed when an Exchange 2007 user logs in. The user is redirected to an Exchange 2007 server and is forced to log on a second time. If you're expecting a lengthy coexistence period, look into how you'll work around this issue.

If you already use Forefront TMG 2010 to perform pre-authentication and forms-based authentication, you're free to continue using it. Alternately, various third-party load balancers provide built-in pre-authentication support.

All this said, if you've already implemented Windows Integrated Authentication for Outlook Web App logins, you won't be affected.

Exchange 2013 migration gotcha #3: Outlook Anywhere

All communication for Outlook clients with Exchange 2013 use HTTPS rather than the combination of RPC/MAPI and HTTPS used in previous versions. Specifically, this means that Outlook Anywhere is used for internal clients as well as external clients. Mailboxes that still reside on Exchange 2007 and/or Exchange 2010 during the coexistence period will continue to connect internally via traditional RPC/MAPI.

If your organization uses Outlook Anywhere externally, ensure that Outlook Anywhere is also enabled on Exchange 2007 and/or Exchange 2010. This is because Exchange 2013 will proxy Outlook Anywhere requests to the version of Outlook Anywhere that corresponds to the version of Exchange Server the mailbox is on.

It's not quite as simple as just enabling Outlook Anywhere or leaving it enabled. You must make sure that NTLM authentication at the IIS level is enabled for both Exchange 2007 and Exchange 2010.

One more thing when it comes to Outlook Anywhere: If the Exchange 2007 servers that run Outlook Anywhere are also running the client access server and mailbox server roles -- and not a Global Catalog server -- you must disable IPv6, as detailed in knowledge base article 2794253

 

To read the full article, go to: SearchExchange

 

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