Removing an Exchange Virtual Server

 

Although it does not occur frequently, you might have to remove an Exchange Virtual Server from an Exchange cluster. In particular, you may have to do this if:

  • You are reconfiguring the cluster from an active/active configuration to an active/passive configuration. That is, you are keeping the same number of nodes in the configuration, but you want one of those nodes to be passive instead of active.

  • You plan to remove Exchange¬†2003 from a cluster. For more information, see "Removing Exchange 2003 from a Cluster Node."

Regardless of your reasons for removing an Exchange Virtual Server, you must consider the requirements shown in the following table before removing that server.

Requirements for removing an Exchange Virtual Server

If the Exchange Virtual Server to be removed Then

Owns the message transfer agent (MTA)

You must remove all other Exchange Virtual Servers before removing the Exchange Virtual Server that owns the MTA resource.

The first Exchange Virtual Server created in a cluster owns the MTA resource. All other Exchange Virtual Servers in the cluster depend on this resource. Therefore, the Exchange Virtual Server that owns the MTA resource cannot be removed first.

Is a routing master of a routing group

You must make another Exchange Virtual Server the routing master of that group before removing the server.

Is the home for the postmaster account

You must move the postmaster account to another Exchange Virtual Server before removing the server.

Is the home for the last public store in a mixed-mode administrative group

You must move the contents of that public store to a public store on a different Exchange Virtual Server.

Is responsible for running the Recipient Update Service

You must make another Exchange Virtual Server the owner of the Recipient Update Service.

Is a target bridgehead server for any routing group

You must designate another server as the bridgehead server before removing the Exchange Virtual Server.

After you have performed any necessary actions listed in the table to make sure that the Exchange Virtual Server can be removed, you can then remove that server. To remove a single Exchange Virtual Server from a cluster, perform the following steps. For detailed instructions, see How to Remove an Exchange Virtual Server from an Exchange Cluster.

  1. Backing up critical data and securing resources hosted by the Exchange Virtual Server.

    Note

    For information about how to back up Exchange data, see Disaster Recovery for Microsoft Exchange 2000 Server.

  2. Moving all mailboxes and public folder content to another Exchange Virtual Server.

  3. Taking the Exchange System Attendant resource offline.

  4. Removing the Exchange Virtual Server.

  5. Deleting remaining cluster resources.

Important

Deleting components of an Exchange Virtual Server without removing the whole server can cause interruptions in mail flow. Therefore, it is recommended that you follow all the steps in the procedure when removing an Exchange Virtual Server from a cluster.