Exchange Server 2013 End of Support Navigation Guide to Follow
Some Microsoft services operate on a fixed lifecycle policy, like Exchange On-premise Server. Moreover, it is now a well-known fact that Microsoft has announced the Exchange Server 2013 End of Support through their official channels. So many organizations that still use the platform to carry out their day-to-day operations have to make a critical choice. That is “what to do next to handle this change” Don’t worry, as this guide is here to help. It contains all the necessary ingredients to make the shift smooth and error-free. So we start by explaining the exact meaning behind the term itself.
Meaning of the Term End of Support in context with “Exchange Server 2013”
The Microsoft Exchange Server 2013 end of life basically means that Microsoft stops providing any additional changes to that particular system. In other words, organizations that still wish to operate the expired version now need to perform all maintenance tasks themselves.
Not only does the 2013 version lose regular updates, but key security patches will no longer be available as well. Some of the other aspects are mentioned below.
- Exchange 2013 users can experience an uptick in cyberattacks.
- New bugs discovered by Microsoft would need a manual resolution.
- No UI improvements or performance enhancements would be rolled out.
- Time zone updates and other synchronicity-related updates would be paused.
So this is more than enough reason to plan out a farewell for the system that served its users for so long and so well. Let’s get an idea of which manual methods are best suited to make the shift.
Exchange Server 2013 End of Support Aftermath & How to Proceed
The method of migration differs on a case-to-case basis. So organizations should make the best-informed decision they can. An easier way to choose a solution for your particular situation is to go through real-life examples. Here, we are going to provide users with some of them.
Challenge: A nonprofit organization with limited IT resources faced the challenge of budget constraints and the end of support for Exchange Server 2013. Moreover, they needed an affordable solution without compromising on data security.
Solution: At first, users considered a cutover migration to the latest Exchange Server 2019. As cutover migration is Microsoft’s recommendation when the number of mailboxes is less than 150. Which was the case with the non-profit agency. However, the admin within the organization quickly realized how complicated the entire process is. At last, they went with the industrial leader in exchange for migration. For a detailed guide, users can refer to the article on Exchange 2013 to 2019 migration.
Challenge: A multinational corporation with thousands of employees faced the daunting task of migrating from Exchange Server 2013 to Exchange Online. Their main challenge was the sheer scale of the migration and ensuring a consistent user experience across different regions.
Solution: After a brief discussion, the executive decision came to go for a staged migration. This migration technique is used where there are more than 2,000 mailboxes; the entire process is broken into smaller chunks. Moreover, each phase of the migration happens independently. Nevertheless, the manual process was plagued with delays and wrong endpoint selection. A better alternative would have been if they had chosen to directly migrate Exchange 2013 to Office 365 all at once via a professional utility.
Another alternative is to set up a mixed system temporarily via the minimal hybrid mechanism of Exchange Server.
Best Practices After Exchange Server 2013 End of Life
Some key points to make the most of a post-support Exchange Server 2013 are as follows:
- Plan your migration well in advance.
- Select the right migration path.
- Safeguard your data with backups.
- Strengthen security measures.
- Ensure compliance with regulations.
- Train users for the new system.
- Maintain transparent communication.
- Thoroughly test the new platform.
- Consider a phased migration approach.
- Provide continuous user support.
- Optimize system performance post-migration.
- Budget for long-term costs.
- Keep detailed documentation.
Automated Tool to Migrate Exchange Server Data
The best-in-class solution for migration is none other than the world-renowned Exchange to Office 365 migration software. With the added capability to handle various migration scenarios, this tool is the answer to all user queries. As the official support for the Exchange version is now closed, users can utilize the easy-to-operate tool to fulfill all data transfer needs. In a few simple steps, the utility can move all the data to a new server environment.
Step 1. Download the tool and select Exchange as both source and Destination.
Step 2. Select the Workload and apply the Date Filter.
Step 3. Validate both the source and destination servers one by one.
Step 4. Complete user mapping in the desired manner (Fetch, Import, Download).
Step 5. Preview the users, prioritize, and validate selection then press Start Migration.
Through this article, we established that Exchange Server 2013 end of support was inevitable and bound to happen. Users who read this now have the confidence and knowledge of how to proceed with the entire operation. To assist with the change, a subsection on best practices was also present here. Moreover, we also provided glimpses of a professional utility to migrate the critical exchange data in the least amount of time.