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Outlook 2003 client after Exchange 2007 transition

By mikeh ·
We have 13 offices with approx. 250 users located across Ontario. Presently we have one Exchange 2003 server at Head Office to which users connect over VPN connection using Outlook 2003 Exchange client.

We need to upgrade to Exchange 2007 at Head Office.

Our main concern is how we reconnect users to the mail server after transition since the new server has a new name and FQDN and IP address.

Presently users connect with server FQDN when connected to the network and use OWA to connect when away from the office network.

All I've read says we must either reinstall the Outlook 2003 client to point to the new mail server or else install Outlook 2007 which should find the server automatically.

All our tech support staff are located in Toronto and travel to all offices to reinstall or rollout Outlook 2007 would be a nightmare.

We use Sonicwall TZ170 units at each branch for firewall and VPN connections.

Any suggestions on how we can reconnect to the new server without visiting each location and reinstalling/reconnecting to the new server would be GREATLY appreciated.

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Simple solution

by RationalGuy In reply to Outlook 2003 client after ...

You wouldn't have to reinstall the Outlook client. At the very most, you'd have to manually update the MAPI profile on the machine (Control Panel | Mail) and update the server name. However, if you leave the old server running (even if there are no mailboxes on it), then Outlook will attempt to connect to it, learn from Active Directory where the new mailbox is and automatically update the user's MAPI profile with the new server name.

If the old server has already been taken out of the environment, create a CNAME record in DNS for the old server host name, pointing at the FQDN for the new server. Again, the client will connect to the new server, find the new server FQDN as defined in AD and update the MAPI profile automagically.

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