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Exchange 2013 Prerequisites

The most important and desirable thing to know is the prerequisite of any new product. Exchange 2013 is a design change after exchange 2007 and 2010 so the prerequisite changes as well.

Let take a look at the new Exchange 2013 pre-requisite cheat sheet!!!

Supported coexistence scenarios
  • Exchange 2003 and earlier versions are not supported
  • Exchange Server 2010 SP3*
  • Exchange Server 2007 SP3 (+ coexistence RU*)
  • *This is the update rollup specially for 2013
  • No coexistence is support in Preview.

Supported client access methods

  • Outlook 2013, Outlook 2010, Outlook 2007
  • RPC over HTTP is only method of connectivity for Outlook clients
  • Entourage 2008 for Mac, Web Services Edition
  • Outlook for Mac 2011
  • Outlook clients earlier than Outlook 2007 are not supported.
  • Email clients on Mac operating systems that require DAV, such as Entourage 2008 for Mac RTM and Entourage 2004, are not supported.
Active Directory
  • Windows Server 2003 forest functional level or higher
  • At least one Windows 2003 SP2 or later GC/DC in each site
  • No support for RODC or ROGC

Supported Namespaces

  • Contiguous
  • Disjoint
  • Single label domain
  • Non-contiguous
Operating System (64-bit)
  • Exchange Server – Mailbox or Client Access
  • Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1 Standard or Enterprise
    • Standard – for Exchange 2013 Client Access servers
    • Enterprise – for Exchange 2013 Mailbox servers in a DAG
  • Windows Server 2012 Standard or Datacenter – Clustering is part of both.
  • Management workstation
  • Windows Server 2012
  • Windows Server 2008 R2 Standard with SP1
  • Windows Server 2008 R2 Enterprise with SP1
  • Windows Server 2008 R2 Datacenter RTM or later
  • 64-bit edition of Windows 8 Release Preview
  • 64-bit edition of Windows 7 with SP1
IIS and other OS components
  • .NET Framework 4.5
  • Windows Management Framework 3.0
  • Unified Communications Managed API (UCMA) 4.0
  • Desktop Experience
  • RSAT
  • IIS – will talk about the components in the next article on Exchange 2013 installation.
  • IPv6 Support
    • IPv6 is supported only when IPv4 is also used; a pure IPv6 environment isn’t supported. Using IPv6 addresses and IP address ranges is supported only when both IPv6 and IPv4 are enabled on that computer, and the network supports both IP address versions. If Exchange 2013 Preview is deployed in this configuration, all server roles can send data to and receive data from devices, servers, and clients that use IPv6 addresses. Exchange 2013 Preview support is similar to support for Exchange Server 2007.



We need a 3rd part SAN certificate with minimum 2 SAN in it 1 for and other for will be the url for all urls in Exchange


Installing Exchange 2013 on directory servers

For security and performance reasons, Microsoft recommends that you install Exchange 2013 or any other previous exchanger versions only on member servers and not on Active Directory directory servers but it works. However, you can’t run DCPromo on a computer running Exchange 2013 Preview. After Exchange 2013 Preview is installed, changing its role from a member server to a directory server, or vice versa, isn’t supported so install a DC first then install exchange 2013. Most important factor is you can’t claim anything from Microsoft because this is not supported configuration. We recommend this configuration for LAB and not for production unless it is an attempt to save the cost with no support.



x64 architecture-based computer with Intel processor that supports Intel 64 architecture (formerly known as Intel EM64T)

AMD processor that supports the AMD64 platform

Intel Itanium IA64 processors not supported


It is working well on my 8GB memory VM with no user. I would recommend minimum 16 GB on a mailbox+CA server. This may vary for number of mailbox and light/medium/heavy profile.

Disk Space:

At least 1.2 GB on the drive on which you install Exchange

An additional 500 MB of available disk space for each Unified Messaging (UM) language pack that you plan to install

200 MB of available disk space on the system drive

A hard disk that stores the message queue database on an Edge Transport server or Hub Transport server with at least 500 MB of free space

The above are the basic requirements of the exchange but we also need 2 GB temp file for exchange files extraction.

2GB to copy the exchange 2013 Preview ISO file.

I would recommend minimum 50GB for both C: drive and for exchange D: drive.

DB, Logs and transport queue disk space will be as per the organizational requirement.


All Exchange 2013 Preview server roles are supported within a virtual machine, provided the virtual machine and hypervisor environment meet all of the system requirements for running Exchange 2013 Preview.

Microsoft supports Exchange 2013 Preview in production on hardware virtualization software only when all the following conditions are true:

The hardware virtualization software is running one of the following:

Windows Server 2012

Windows Server 2008 R2 with Hyper-V technology

Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 R2

The Exchange guest virtual machine:

Is running Microsoft Exchange 2013 Preview.

Is deployed on an operating system that is supported by Exchange 2013 Preview.

The storage used by an Exchange virtual machine for Exchange data (for example, mailbox databases or Hub transport queues) can be any of the following:

Virtual disks of a fixed size.

Virtual disks store on block-level, direct attached storage (DAS) that is locally connected to the hypervisor machine.

Block-level storage that is connected via storage area network (SAN) technology (could include fiber channel, fiber channel over Ethernet, or Internet SCSI (iSCSI)).

SCSI pass-through storage.

Internet SCSI (iSCSI) storage.

All storage used by an Exchange guest machine for storage of Exchange data must be block-level storage because Exchange 2013 Preview doesn’t support the use of network attached storage (NAS) volumes. Also, NAS storage that’s presented to the guest as block-level storage via the hypervisor isn’t supported.

The following virtual disk requirements apply for volumes used to store Exchange data:

Virtual disks that dynamically expand aren’t supported by Exchange.

Virtual disks that use differencing or delta mechanisms (such as Hyper-V’s differencing VHDs or snapshots) aren’t supported.

The following features and technologies are not supported for virtualized Exchange environment:

Oversubscription or dynamic adjustment of memory allocated to Exchange 2013 Preview virtual machines.

Virtual machine snapshots which capture the state of a running virtual machine and allow reverting to a previous state.

Prabhat Nigam (Wizkid)


6 Responses to “Exchange 2013 Prerequisites”

  1. Sean O’Leary Says:

    There are lots of changes coming with SharePoint 2013. It’s important to be prepared for the upgrade. Now is a good time to determine what content is still needed and relevant.

  2. Zain Says:

    Dear Prabhat,

    I guess you have left out the requirement of third party SSL certificates which are required for the CAS role and without which it will be impossible to get the outlook client connecting to Exchange. The Mailbox role used the Self signed certificates. Am I right ?


  3. Prabhat Nigam Says:

    Dear Zain, Yes you are correct we need 3rd party san cert. I have updated the blog, hope rest of the blog was helpful.

  4. Exchange 2013: Cumulative Update 6 Installation « Says:

    […] the basic prerequisite from here or […]

  5. Sunad Says:


    What type of minimum Permission required to prepare active directory and then to install exchange 2013, can also be pre-requisites !


  6. Prabhat Nigam Says:

    Domain admins, Enterprise Admins and schema admins group membership for AD and schema update. domain admins for the installation.
    Also organization management group management in coexistence.

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