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Exchange Virtual Server - How to Set Up an Exchange Virtual Server

choosing the right versions

Microsoft Exchange and Microsoft Virtual Server are two very popular software packages for corporate IT departments. They are also both very complicated and are usually dealt with (at least directly) by trained IT professionals. Here are some tips and advice for IT professionals who are going to install Microsoft Exchange on a Virtual Server.

Choosing the Right Versions

Both software solutions have several different versions that are available, and deciding which package you want to use is the first step. On the virtual server side, Microsoft Virtual Server 2005 r2 is the more established and widely-used software, but Microsoft Virtual Server 2008 r2 is the latest-and-greatest software, and is fully supported. On the Exchange side, Microsoft Exchange 2003, 2007, and 2010 are all current flavors. Of course Microsoft Exchange 2010 is the newest, but many IT departments choose to go with older and more reliable software. Microsoft supports Exchange on Virtual Servers from version 2003 forward (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/897613). Remember that Microsoft Virtual Server is a free download, which Microsoft Exchange is where the big cost will be.

Setting up the Virtual Server Environment

You will of course need to get Microsoft virtual Server running and then get Exchange set up inside that. Make sure that your machine can support Virtual Server (the full list of system requirements can be found here: http://www.microsoft.com/hyper-v-server/en/us/system-requirements.aspx). Virtual Server is designer to run on older hardware, so it should work alright on most machines. When you are ready and you know you r machine can handle it, download and install the software.

Setting Up Exchange Inside of the Virtual Server

Once you have your Virtual Server Up and running, it is time to get Microsoft Exchange inside of it. You should also make sure that your hardware is capable of running Exchange. A full list of system requirements can be found at microsoft.com/exchange/2010/en/us/system-requirements.aspx. You will need to license Exchange form Microsoft. This can be quite expensive, but your company should cover the expense. When you have purchased it, download the software and set it up inside of your virtual server. This may require a bit more tweaking then it would inside of a dedicated server, but shouldn’t be too bad.

If Your Setup Isn’t Running Correctly

Because of the vast number of different configurations you could have – different versions of each software, different hardware, and different settings, it is impossible for me to even begin to address the problems you could encounter. Microsoft fully supports both products and has an extensive Knowledge Base filled with in-depth help guides which should help you resolve any issues you may encounter.

If Your Setup is Running Correctly

Hopefully, this is the option that will apply to you. If so, then congrats! You should be ready to deploy your setup to users. While this setup may require occasional maintenance, it should be able to run smoothly if it was deployed correctly.

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