Deploying Exchange Server 2013 (Part 2)

If you would like to read the other parts of this article series please go to:


In the first article of this series we went over the process to install the Exchange Server 2013 pre-requisites while, in this article we are going over the installation process using two methods: GUI and command-line.

The most important thing is to make sure that all pre-requisites were configured properly and if you haven’t read the first article of this article series, please go over that to make sure that your Windows Server 2012 is ready to support the Exchange Server 2013 deployment.

Installing Exchange Server 2013 using GUI

If you haven’t download it yet you can do that from the following address and the download will be a file called Exchange-x64.exe. After finishing the download, we need to double click the executable and extract the contents to a folder. In this article let’s create a folder called EX2013.

After extracting the contents, open the same folder and double click setup.exe (the last file from the list).

The new installation process has a couple of new features besides of the new design. The first one is that now the setup is able to check on the Internet and validate the last rollup, security and language packs available and this option allows the setup itself to be updated.

The first stage of the setup wizard is to connect to the internet and search for new updates. These are the main steps of the first stage:

  1. In the Check for Updates page (Figure 01). Let’s use the default setting and click on Next, this process may take some time.

Figure 01

  1. On the Downloading Updates page. Wait for the Next button to be available and then click it (Figure 02)

Figure 02

The setup will take some time to copy files (In the Preview version we had a next button but it was removed in this final version). Now, the Introduction page is shown and the real deployment will start. The following steps can be used to finalize the deployment:

  1. On the Introduction page (Figure 03). That’s our official welcome page, on this page we can find a couple of links about Exchange Server 2013, let’s click Next.

Figure 03

  1. On the License Agreement page. After reading the license agreement and if you agree with it, please select I accept the terms in the license agreement and then click Next.
  2. On the Recommended Settings page (Figure 04). We can decide if we are going to provide usage feedback to Microsoft and also check online for a solution when an error occurs. Let’s leave the default settings (Use recommended settings) and click Next.

Figure 04

  1. On the Checking Required Software page. If all required software is installed the Next button will be available, if you take more than 10 seconds to take an action the wizard will move forward to the next page automatically.
  2. On the Server Role Selection page (Figure 05). In this page we have the first big change in Exchange Server 2013 where our 5 (five) roles that were introduced in Exchange Server 2007/2010 are replaced by just two roles: Mailbox Roles and Client Access Role. Based on our scenario we are going to install the Mailbox server (UYEX01) using GUI and the other server will be based on the command-line. Click Next.
    Bear in mind that we still have the option Automatically install Windows Server roles and features that are required to install Exchange Servers which will install all Operating System components to support the selected roles.

Figure 05

  1. On the Installation Space and Location page. In this section we can validate the disk available and the amount required to deploy Exchange Server 2013 and define the installation location for the product. Let’s leave the default settings and click Next.
  2. On the Exchange Organization page (Figure 06). Since we are building our environment from scratch a new organization will be required. The Exchange organization boundary is our Active Directory forest. Let’s name our Organization and click Next.
    if you want to split permissions where the Exchange Administrators won’t be able to manage Active Directory objects then the option Apply Active Directory split permissions security model to the Exchange Organization should be selected.

Figure 06

  1. On the Malware Protection Settings page (Figure 07). That is a new feature of Exchange Server 2013, where we have Malware protection and this option can be managed through Exchange Administration Center or Exchange Management Shell afterwards. Let’s leave the default settings and click Next.

Figure 07

  1. On the Readiness Checks page (Figure 08). In this section we will have a summary of all pre-requisites and if the server is ready to receive Exchange Server 2013. If we have missed any software component we will be notified at this stage and we need to fix it before moving forward. If all testing went fine, then the Install button will be available and we can proceed to the next step.

Figure 08

At this point all the required features were installed on the server. Just run Get-WindowsFeature in a PowerShell session and you will notice that all features are shown as installed.

Note #2:
In some cases the readiness can display that all features are not installed, if that is the case run a Get-WindowsFeature and if you see the features required by Exchange showing as InstallPending, just restart the server and run the setup again and you will be fine.

  1. On the Setup Progress page (Figure 09). The process may take some time depending on your hardware configuration and it is divided in 13 stages (Yes, the bar goes 1 to 100% for each stage). If everything goes well we will receive information that the Setup has completed and the Complete button will be available. In this release there isn’t an option to open Exchange Management Console because it doesn’t exist anymore. From now on, our admin interfaces will be through Exchange Admin Center and Exchange Management Shell.

Figure 09

Installing Exchange Server 2013 using command-line

The installation process is similar to what we have in Exchange Server 2007/2010 where it is done by setup.exe from the main folder of the Exchange Server 2013 installation folder. We can run the setup.exe only to find out the available switches but in order to install a Mailbox role we can run the following command: .\Setup.exe /role:ClientAccess,ManagementTools /IacceptExchangeServerLicenseTerms as shown in figure 10.

Figure 10

Troubleshooting the installation process…

Exchange setup process has been improved with each new release and the readiness check will clear most of the possible issues before the installation process starts, however, if you are still having issues you can always check the log files generated by the setup process. These log files can be found in C:\ExchangeSetupLogs and each file contains log information that allows us to track down the steps being performed by the setup process (Figure 11).

Figure 11

You can check the logs to track all steps performed during the setup process, in the ExchangeSetup file (Figure 12) we can check all testing being performed for the setup process.

Figure 12


In this article, we installed Exchange Server 2013 using both the graphical user interface and the command line. In the final article of this series we will go through the process of setting up an initial configuration on the new Exchange Server 2013.

If you would like to read the other parts of this article series please go to:

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