Exchange Tools vs. Cluster Tools: What’s the Deal? has explained the three different ways to manage the CCR and SCC environment that are: Cluster Administrator (cluadmin), Exchange Management Shell or the new feature called Manage Clustered Mailbox Server Wizard (available in Exchange Server 2007 SP1).

There is some confusion and misperceptions about the correct tools to use to manage a clustered mailbox server (CMS) in a single copy cluster (SCC) or cluster continuous replication (CCR) environment. Specifically, folks are asking the following questions:

  1. Do I use the Windows Server failover cluster management tools (namely, Cluster Administrator and Cluster.exe) to manage a CMS, or do you use the Exchange tools (namely, the Exchange Management Console and the Exchange Management Shell)?
  2. Will anything bad happen if I use the wrong tool to perform a task on my CMS?

To clear up this confusion, I thought a blog post might be helpful.

The answer to the second question is generally, no, because the answer to the first question is generally, there is no wrong tool. Instead, use of the tools really falls into two categories:

  1. You have to use tool X because there’s no choice. This category refers to the tasks that must be performed with the cluster tools.
  2. You should use tool X instead of tool Y because it’s better. This category refers to tasks performed by Exchange tools that do extra things that are good for you that the cluster tools don’t do.

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