This week, Paul Cunningham, editor of the Exchange Server Pro website has released his latest book, the Exchange Server 2007 to 2010 Migration guide. Paul kindly sent me a free copy of his new book too look at and after reading it, I thought it was worth sharing a quick review.
I don’t usually do reviews or promotion (and Paul hasn’t asked or paid for a review either) but after a quick read I think that this guide will be pretty worthwhile for many of my readers looking at migrating smaller organizations to Exchange Server 2010.
Paul’s book is around 260 content-filled pages, and covers the tasks involved in planning and migrating to Exchange 2010 in a methodical, project-based scenario moving a small Exchange 2007 organization to a similar sized, highly available Exchange 2010 install.
The kind of tasks covered in the first section of the book range from the pre-requisites you need to cover first, how to analyse your current Exchange 2007 environment using the Exchange Profile Analyser and key areas like assessing your clients before migration. Understandably it’s focused on the migration aspects so areas like sizing your environment aren’t covered as in depth as I would have liked – but Paul provides information on the best documentation out there to do that.
After the planning stages there’s a comprehensive guide on installation of Exchange 2010, including coverage of some key gotchas when introducing it into an Exchange 2007 environment and a good bunch of inline tips as you go along. After setup, Paul’s also ensured that checklists are in place to make sure you double check what you’ve done and document the tests correctly. While not a criticism, there were a couple of areas I thought could have been expanded upon – in particular when configuring storage for logs and databases, I thought it was a pity the best-practice of using a 64KB NTFS allocation unit size wasn’t mentioned. But if that’s my main criticism, that’s a good thing!
In the final sections the book moves onto the core tasks – planning for the actual migration; documenting what you’ve got and testing your migration strategy, then a detailed section on performing the migration itself. Again, checklists are in place along the way to make sure all the bases are covered. Finally, Paul covers the steps involved decommissioning the Exchange 2007 environment, with workarounds for common issues people come across.
As an added bonus Paul provides template documents for the checklists mentioned in the books, and a short but pretty decent guide on backups and restores for Exchange 2010 – the kind of thing you’d want to keep handy.
From a brief read, I can tell this is a book based on real world experience. It covers the kind of things I get asked time and time again and see people stuck with on forums. There are more comprehensive volumes out there on Exchange, covering a lot more topics in a lot more detail, but where I think this book stands out is it’s the guide a lot of small to medium business admins tackling an Exchange migration themselves need to get the job done without much (or even any) help.