Optimize your Microsoft Exchange environment and ensure business continuity

Microsoft Exchange Server is a comprehensive platform encompassing email, calendaring, contacts, scheduling, and collaboration. Tailored for business use, it operates on the Windows Server operating system (OS). Microsoft’s intent in designing Exchange Server is to provide users with seamless access to the messaging platform across various devices, including mobile devices, desktops, and web-based systems. Additionally, Exchange Server boasts telephony capabilities, supporting voice messages as part of its functionalities. Nowadays, it is crucial for organizations to proactively enhance their Exchange Server environment. While software support considerations are integral, the focus here is on optimizing your infrastructure for continued productivity and seamless communication.

What does end of support for older Microsoft Exchange servers mean? 

Exchange Server has been around for over a decade, and during that time, it has undergone several updates and improvements. However, as with any software product, there comes a time when support for older versions must end in order to focus on newer, more advanced technology. Last year, it was  the case with Exchange Server 2013. The following features and functionalities are no longer be available:

  • Technical support for issues 
  • Bug fixes for problems that may impact the stability and usability
  • Security fixes for vulnerabilities 
  • Time zone updates

 

Organizations that are still using Exchange Server 2013 or any other Exchange Server should take this end of support seriously. Without updates or security patches, their Exchange Server could become vulnerable to security threats and could potentially compromise their entire IT infrastructure. Additionally, without technical support, any issues that arise with the Exchange Server will have to be resolved in-house, which could be costly and time-consuming.

 

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Microsoft Exchange Server end of support, what are my options?

Now that you know why you should migrate or upgrade before your software support ends, it is essential that you take into consideration the options you have to ensure your organization’s productivity and communication. 

  1. Migrate Exchange Server with an older version to Microsoft 365 by using cutover, minimal hybrid, or full hybrid migration to move mailboxes, public folders, and other data. Once migration is complete, remove on-premises Exchange servers and Active Directory.
  2. Upgrade your on-premises servers by migrating from Exchange 2013 to Exchange 2019.
  3. Migrate from an old Exchange Server version to Exchange Online (Office 365) and adapt to a hybrid or cloud environment. 

Option 1: Benefits of migrating an old Exchange version to Microsoft 365

Moving to Microsoft 365 is the easiest and most advantageous method to retire your Exchange 2013 deployment. By migrating to Microsoft 365, you can upgrade from old technology to modern features easily and take advantage of the following benefits:

  • Larger mailboxes with greater data security
  • Security capabilities like anti-spam and antimalware protection
  • Compliance capabilities like Data Loss Prevention, Retention Policies, In-Place and Litigation Hold, In-place eDiscovery, and more
  • Integration with SharePoint Online, OneDrive, Teams, Power BI, and other Microsoft 365 services
  • Focused Inbox
  • Advanced analytics and Viva Insights
 

In addition, Microsoft 365 receives new features and experiences before any other platform, giving your organization the advantage of utilizing them instantly. You will also be free from:

  • Purchasing and maintaining hardware
  • Paying to operate and cool your servers
  • Ensuring servers are up to date on security, product, and time-zone fixes
  • Maintaining server storage and software that supports compliance requirements
  • Upgrading to a new Exchange version since Microsoft 365 always has the latest version
 

Option 2: Benefits of migrating Exchange 2013 to Exchange 2019

Although the most beneficial value and user experience is achieved by fully migrating to Microsoft 365, we understand that certain organizations may need to maintain some Exchange servers on-premises. This could be due to regulatory requirements, the need to ensure data is not stored in a foreign data center, unique settings or requirements, or the necessity of Exchange to manage cloud mailboxes because you still use Active Directory on-premises. 

Regardless, if you decide to keep Exchange on-premises, it’s crucial to frequently optimize your Exchange Server environment.

To optimize your experience, we recommend upgrading your remaining on-premises environment to Exchange 2019. There is no need to install Exchange Server 2016 since you can go straight from Exchange Server 2013 to Exchange Server 2019. Exchange 2019 provides a user experience that’s very similar to Microsoft 365. However, there are some features that can only be found on Microsoft 365.

 

Option 3: Migrate from on-prem Exchange server to Office 365 (Exchange Online)

By implementing an Exchange-based hybrid deployment, you have the option to transfer Exchange mailboxes either from on-premises to the Exchange Online organization or from Exchange Online to the Exchange organization. Team Venti can help you to move mailboxes between the on-premises and Exchange Online organizations. This method enables you to transfer existing mailboxes rather than creating new user mailboxes and importing user information. It’s important to note that this approach differs from migrating user mailboxes from an on-premises Exchange organization to Exchange Online as part of a complete Exchange migration to the cloud.

 

Migrate your Exchange 2013 with a Microsoft Gold Partner

Migrating to a newer version of Exchange can be a complex process that requires careful planning and execution to minimize disruptions to business operations. To ensure a successful migration, it is recommended that organizations work with a Microsoft Gold Partner who has extensive experience in Exchange migrations.

Team Venti’s expertise can help your organization transition to the most beneficial option for your unique business needs. Receive expert advice, technical support, and proven migration methodologies to ensure a smooth transition to a newer Exchange platform. Our highly trained team can plan, deploy, and migrate your email mailboxes and related data to the cloud without business or employee interruption, with the convenience of packaged pricing. Schedule a free consultation with one of our agents to learn the next steps to take. 

 

Aranza Peralta

Aranza Peralta

Team Venti Brand Manager

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