Cluster is a one of virtual mode creation where we create one sort of link between two or more computers so that if one server goes down other server should take ownership. It is not so easy to achieve this sort of solution which is so called as High Availability. Before we could create Exchange cluster we need to ensure that Windows Server cluster is configured properly. Trust me in exchange 2003 cluster creation was tidicous for me however in Exchange 2007 it is pretty easy but we need to ensure that are we following the correct steps to deploy proper high availability solution.
Well we had installed Exchange 2007 on a cluster environment. To know how to build exchange 2007 on a cluster environment click here.
Now it’s a time to uninstall it grace fully. Whenever we think of uninstallation of Exchange 2003\2007 it is pretty straight forward – just need to go to add\remove program and choose exchange application and click on Remove. If you face any issue, then go to registry and remove the exchange entries. But when we think of uninstalling Exchange from a cluster environment it is not like what I said just now. There are certain factors need to keep in mind.
1) Uninstallation of Exchange cluster from the passive node.
2) Evict passive node
3) Removing the clustered mailbox server from active node
4) Uninstallation of Exchange from active node
Let see how to perform the above the task to grace fully remove the exchange from the cluster environment.
Uninstallation of Exchange cluster from Passive Node:
Keep in mind whenever you perform any task like installation or uninstallation of application or hotfix\patches always perform it on the passive node first and then failover the resource to updated server and do the same task on the another node. So when we uninstall the exchange application we need to uninstall the exchange from the passive node. So the very first thing is need to identify which exchange server is active or passive node. Inorder to do so either you can type the following command:
Open the cluster management console, click on the Clustered mailbox Server Name
As per the above Figure1 or Figure 2 we came to know that MBX-2 is the passive node.
• Now login to MBX-2 with the administrator rights
• Open the command prompt and type the following command
Now we have successfully uninstalled the Exchange from the passive node.
How to Evict Passive Node:
Now we have just removed the cluster mailbox Server from the passive node, what about the server information which is still existing in the cluster environment, inorder to remove that, we need to evict the passive node and to evict it, follow the below steps:
• Open the Cluster Management Tool
• Expand the cluster resource name (CCR.aalisha.com)
• Expand the Nodes
• Right click the passive node server (MBX-2)
• Click on More actions => click on “Stop cluster service”
• Click on More Actions once again and click Evict
• And then click on Evict node MBX-2
How to evict node from the command prompt:
• net stop clussvc
• Cluster node /evict
• Cluster CCR node MBX-2 /evict
Then finally restart the computer.
And last but not least uninstall “failover cluster management” service, inorder to do that:
• Open the server manager console
• Click on Features and then click on Remove Features
• Uncheck Failover Clustering and click on Yes to reconfirm and click on NEXT, then Click on Remove.
After the node is restarted, remove any remaining files and folders from the Exchange Server program files folder and subfolders. You can also remove the %SystemDrive%\ExchangeSetupLogs folder and subfolders.
Removing the clustered mailbox server role:
Removing the clustered mailbox server role from the active node is not same as like passive node. Here we can’t go with uninstall command only because this server holds the clustered mailbox server information and moreover it is online right now. So inorder to remove this we need type the following command from the exchange bin directory:
Setup.com /removeCMS /CMSName:
Setup.com /removeCMS /CMSName:MBXCCR
Once we remove the CMS it doesn’t mean that exchange is uninstalled completely. Till now what we have done is removed the functionality of active mailbox server role and now we made this server as a passive node. Let me show how…
If you see the figure 7, we have just removed the clustered mailbox server but if you see the figure 8 Exchange binaries are still remaining. So inorder remove the exchange binaries we need to run the same command as like we did for passive node (MBX-2) i.e
Or else we can run the task from the GUI
• Open the control panel
• Open Program Features
• Select “Microsoft Exchange Server 2007” and the click on Unisntall
• Then it will readiness check, to ensure that we have met all the necessary requirement before we could uninstall the exchange, once it complete – click on Uninstall
• After uninstall – we are done with Exchange uninstall process
OR simply type the below command to remove the CMS and uninstallation of exchange:
Setup.com /mode:uninstall /removeCMS /CMSName:
Evict the existing node:
In the passive node I showed how to evict the node through GUI. Now let’s evict the node through command prompt;
• Run the following command :
Cluster node /force
Cluster CCR node MBX-1 /force
Note : When evicting the last node in the cluster using Cluster.exe, you do not need to stop the Cluster service.
If you see the above figure – we have removed the entire cluster information.
• Last but not least – Remove the “Cluster Management Feature”
o Open the Server Manager
o Click Features
o Click on Remove Features
o Uncheck “Failover Clustering” and then click on Remove
• After that simply restart the computer.
Hope this article is being informative for you.
Exchange Server 2007 High Availability
Uninstalling Clustered Mailbox Servers