Completely remove exchange 2003 from domain/AD RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hi,

    My predecessor installed Exchange 2003 on a server within our domain as a test/play.  However we don't use it and currently use another product for email. I want to remove this server and remove any traces of it and exchange from AD so that if in the future anyone or me wants to install the latest version of Exchange or use Office 365 that there are no bits left over that could interfere. There we various user accounts that had exchange mailboxes and I have removed these from Exchange, I notice that when I remove the Exchange attributes, it removes the email address from the users account, which I then have to put back.

    I understand I need to uninstall Exchange from the server and then on another server (a DC) run the exchange setup /removeorg to remove any details of exchange 2003 from the domain.  My question is, will the removeorg switch remove email addresses etc from the users account? Our current email system uses these.  I cannot find any details what removeorg will remove, I understand the schema stays but its the attributes it removes is what i am concerned about and what effect this will have on our current email setup.


    Thursday, February 20, 2014 9:28 AM

All replies

  • BTW this is the only Exchange server we have.
    Thursday, February 20, 2014 9:29 AM
  • Try this:


    --- Rich Matheisen MCSE&I, Exchange MVP

    Thursday, February 20, 2014 11:01 PM
  • Thursday, February 20, 2014 11:02 PM
  • Thanks for the links, but I had already found these so I am aware of what I need to do.  But my question was what does the removeorg switch actually do?  I don't want to run it and find it strips anything out of the users accounts in AD.
    Tuesday, February 25, 2014 10:34 AM
  • If you don't want anything removed from the user accounts then don't remove Exchange from the organization. Without an Exchange server running the Recipient Update Service no mailboxes will be created and many of the permissions and properties won't be added to the AD objects.

    If you only want to get rid of the server you can just uninstall Exchange from the machine and leave the AD alone.

    If you installed the Exchange Management tools on any machines that you use to created new AD objects you should uninstall that software, too. If the Exchange Management tools (and the ADUC extensions) remain they'll add a few properties to the new AD objects if you mistakenly say you want to mail-enable them.

    --- Rich Matheisen MCSE&I, Exchange MVP

    Wednesday, February 26, 2014 3:26 AM
  • Thanks, what would be the implications of not removing exchange from the organization?

    We don't use Exchange at all but may do in the future or move towards Office 365 from our existing email package.  Our existing email package was running before any Exchange server was installed so I am assuming that it will run after Exchange has been removed from the org. I just want to make sure that the server is removed properly now and not find in a few years time that I could have done more to remove any remanence of it.

    Wednesday, February 26, 2014 8:38 AM
  • If you don't remove Exchange from the AD there will, well, still be Exchange in the AD.

    If you decide to use O365 in the future you don't have to operate in a hybrid environment. You can opt to NOT do any directory synchronization and just use O365. All of your e-mail clients will use only O365 and your mail will be delivered to O365.

    You can export all of your AD objects that have the "mail" property populated and then remove the Exchange organization from the AD. If "stuff" disappears you can use the exported information to repopulate the objects. The AD schema will still have all of the properties and classes in the schema so only the values will be missing.

    --- Rich Matheisen MCSE&I, Exchange MVP

    Wednesday, February 26, 2014 9:03 PM
  • Thanks again, when we move to O365 (this is a school so get A2 free) I plan to use directory Sync with O365.  Would having the left overs of Exchange affect this?
    Thursday, February 27, 2014 11:14 AM
  • Not if the user (distribution group, or contact) was never mail- or mailbox-enabled in Exchange.

    --- Rich Matheisen MCSE&I, Exchange MVP

    Friday, February 28, 2014 2:03 AM
  • Some were but I have removed the exchange attributes from their AD accounts using exchange system manager.  From what I can see the only field that I had to put back after doing this was their email address.


    Friday, February 28, 2014 12:36 PM