Article ID: 833396 - View products that this article applies to.
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Summary

This article describes the steps to automatically or manually remove Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 from your computer.

Before you can remove Exchange Server 2003, you must disconnect all mailbox-enabled users from the mailboxes on the Exchange server. After all mailbox-enabled users are disconnected, you can use the Exchange 2003 Setup program to remove Exchange Server 2003.

However, you might be unable to remove Exchange 2003 by using the Exchange 2003 Setup program. To do this, you must first stop and disable all Exchange services. You can then use Registry Editor to remove registry keys that are part of the Exchange installation. After you have removed the registry keys, you must remove and then reinstall Internet Information Services (IIS). Then, you must reinstall any service packs or security updates that are installed on the server.

If you have a clustered server, do not remove the Common Files because this also removes the Cluster service. If the Cluster service is removed, you must reinstall it.

Use the Active Directory User and Computers snap-in to disconnect all mailbox-enabled users

You cannot remove the Exchange Server 2003 components if the Exchange server still has mailboxes for mailbox-enabled users. To use the Active Directory User and Computers snap-in to disconnect all mailbox-enabled users, follow these steps: click here to expand or collapse the steps

Run the Exchange Server 2003 Setup program to remove the installed components

You can remove the Exchange components by running the Exchange Server 2003 Setup program from Programs and Features in Control Panel on the computer that is running Exchange Server 2003. To do this, follow these steps. click here to expand or collapse the steps
To stop and disable the Exchange Server 2003 services, follow these steps: click here to expand or collapse the steps

Use Registry Editor to remove the Exchange registry keys

To remove the Exchange registry keys, follow these steps. click here to expand or collapse the steps
If there is a Notes connector or a GroupWise connector that is installed on the server that is running Exchange Server 2003, do the following: click here to expand or collapse the steps
If Microsoft Office 2003, Microsoft Office XP, or Microsoft Windows SharePoint Service is not installed, do the following: click here to expand or collapse the steps

Remove and reinstall the IIS component

To remove and reinstall IIS, use one of the following methods, depending on your environment.
For a Windows 2000-based cluster node or for a stand-alone server that is running Microsoft Windows 2000 or Windows Server 2003
For a Windows Server 2003-based cluster node

Remove the Exchange Server 2003 server object from the Exchange 5.5 Admin program

If the Exchange Server 2003 server is installed in an existing Microsoft Exchange Server 5.5 site, and if you use the Exchange 5.5 Admin program, you must delete the Exchange Server 2003 server object from the Exchange 5.5 Admin program.

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Note You may have to remove Active Directory objects that are associated with the server that you removed.

Remove the Exchange Server 2003 server from Active Directory

To remove the Exchange Server 2003 server from Active Directory, follow these steps. click here to expand or collapse the steps

If you cannot install or run Exchange System Manager, you can use the Active Directory Service Interfaces (ADSI) Edit snap-in to manually remove enough of the server attributes so that you can try a successful reinstallation. This method does not perform cleanups of references to the server object outside the server's own container. We do not recommend that you use this method unless you intend to immediately reinstall the server in the same administrative group. This is because you may have to manually remove or edit many attributes on objects throughout Active Directory.

The ADSI Edit snap-in is available in Windows Support Tools. For more information about how to install Windows 2000 Support Tools, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
301423 How to install the Windows 2000 Support Tools to a Windows 2000 Server-based computer
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Warning If you use the ADSI Edit snap-in, the LDP utility, or any other LDAP version 3 client, and you incorrectly modify the attributes of Active Directory objects, you can cause serious problems. These problems may require that you reinstall Microsoft Windows 2000 Server, Windows Server 2003, Microsoft Exchange 2000 Server, Microsoft Exchange Server 2003, or both Windows and Exchange. Microsoft cannot guarantee that problems that occur if you incorrectly modify Active Directory object attributes can be solved. Modify these attributes at your own risk.
To use the ADSI Edit snap-in to remove an Exchange Server 2003 server from an Exchange Server 2003 administrative group, follow these steps: click here to expand or collapse the steps

Recommended action if you receive an error when you try to reinstall Exchange Server 2003

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Warning If you use the ADSI Edit snap-in, the LDP utility, or any other LDAP version 3 client, and you incorrectly modify the attributes of Active Directory objects, you can cause serious problems. These problems may require that you reinstall Microsoft Windows 2000 Server, Windows Server 2003, Microsoft Exchange 2000 Server, Microsoft Exchange Server 2003, or both Windows and Exchange. Microsoft cannot guarantee that problems that occur if you incorrectly modify Active Directory object attributes can be solved. Modify these attributes at your own risk.

When you try to reinstall Exchange Server 2003, you may receive the following error message:
To install the first Exchange server in a domain, or to run setup in "/ForestPrep" mode, you must be an Exchange Full Administrator at the organization level. You must use an account that has been granted the Full Exchange Administrator role on the Exchange organization using the Exchange Administrative Delegation Wizard. -- ID:64283.
If you receive this error message, you must use the ADSI Edit snap-in to change some attributes in Active Directory. To do this, follow these steps: click here to expand or collapse the steps

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Article ID: 833396 - Last Review: September 4, 2013 - Revision: 16.0
Applies to
  • Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 Enterprise Edition
Keywords: 
kbhowtomaster KB833396

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