Microsoft DOES Support Mixed Exchange 2003/2007 Networks

Last week, we said we'd heard that Microsoft's support teams weren't willing to support customers who were running mixed networks of Exchange 2003 and 2007. This information came from several Exchange customers and a Microsoft Gold Partner, who is also an MVP (Microsoft Most Valued Professional). They'd been told that support for such mixed networks was only offered to those who were in the process of migration, and not for a a semi-permanent state of co-existence.

Microsoft emphatically disputes this. For example, Elizabeth Scott, a manager in Microsoft's Exchange Customer Experience group, says:

We absolutely support customers running environments with a mixture of Exchange 2000 Server, Exchange Server 2003 and Exchange Server 2007, regardless of whether they are in transition to Exchange 2007, or whether they plan to remain in a mixed environment during each products' support lifecycle.

Note we're discussing here the policies related to customer support -- i.e., whether teams such as Microsoft Customer Support Services will help a customer in this situation. We're not talking about the technical aspects of co-existence. Exchange 2000, 2003, and 2007 clearly work together in a mixed network.

Our conclusions:

  • We think Microsoft really does, as a corporate body, wish to provide support for co-existence.
  • It seems that in some cases, there is a disconnection between this corporate intent and what customers have been told.
  • We don't know what the extent of this disconnection is. Maybe just a few companies have heard this, maybe it's widespread.
  • If you experience difficulty obtaining co-existence support from Microsoft, point your Microsoft rep. to this bulletin and highlight the quote; its permanent link is

... Richi Jennings

One Trackback

  1. By subject: exchange on June 23, 2007 at 9:36 AM

    Weekend reading

    Publishing Exchange Client Access with ISA 2006 – The Complete Solution (Part 2) Monitoring Exchange

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