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Merging two sites into one

Merging two sites into one

Merging two sites into one


My company currently has two locations, each on its own domain, each with its own Exchange server.  We will be eliminating the server at Site B, putting B on Site A's domain, and having B's users retrieve mail directly from A's Exchange server (over the WAN).

Is this possible?  Do we have to make new mailboxes, or is there some way to move the recipients (and their mail) between sites (without impacting the users already on Site A)?

If you need any more info, please let me know.  Thanks in advance for any suggestions.


RE: Merging two sites into one

You'll have to create a site connector, and then find the FAQ to move users between sites.

It can be done, but it will be messy. Make sure you keep the trust relationships between domains. In fact, this might be a good time to merge your NT domains as well.

Mike Hillwig
I've done more R5 deployments than I care to think about.

RE: Merging two sites into one

It is fairly messy. Basically, you use the move server wizard to move server B into server A's site, then move the mailboxes to the other server. BTW, move server does not move Public Folders, so you need to replicate them first. Plus, you cannot have any connectors on the server being moved. Setup your site connectors and directory replicators, sync the DS, and then delete the connectors. You also need to remove the Event Service and IMS. Be sure you have an IMS setup at site A and set the MX record for site B to a higher prority on Site A. Once that is working, delete the IMS from Server B.

Additionally, there are several things to concider first.

1. Bandwidth: What is the impact of getting mail over the WAN. (You probably want your users to use OST (not PST) files to get their mail. Pretend you users all have laptops. This will minimize traffic (once the initial update is done) accross the WAN for GAL searches etc.

2. Addressing: You can give your users whatever addresses you want by exporting to a CSV file, editing it, and importing. Be sure you set the mode and header information to correct the addresses. Do this after you move the server, and before you move the mailboxes.

You may be better off by having a single site with 2 servers. This is an option as you can manage them from a single location and keep a single GAL. It all depends on space and bandwidth.

Good luck, it isn't hard, but it is complicated. There are lots of Technet Articles to look at. Practice on a lab/test system first.

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