Configure DAG with Exchange 2010 hosted on Windows 2012

Yes, Exchange 2010 SP3 can be installed on Windows Server 2012.  But, with respect to database availability groups (DAG), it is not as easy to employ and may not be the best decision for your environment or patience level.

First, make certain you have installed/configured all of the prerequisites required for Exchange 2010 on a Windows 2012 server prior to installing Exchange 2010 SP3.

Next, assuming the Exchange installation went without a hitch due to meticulous preparation, we can start planning our DAG implementation. Yes! We need to plan the DAG implementation because unlike Exchange 2010 on Windows 2008 R2 it is not an automated process.

If we go through the normal Exchange 2010 DAG creation process (like with Windows 2008 R2), issues will occur when adding the first member to the DAG. The error received will be something similar to this…

DumpClusterTopology: Failed opening with Microsoft.Exchange.Cluster.Replay.AmGetFqdnFailedNotFoundException: 
An Active Manager operation failed with a transient error. Please retry the operation. 
Error: The fully qualified domain name for node 'DAG1' could not be found.

It took me a while to find information regarding the error and at first thought this resolution was silly because this isn’t the normal experience when creating a DAG in Exchange 2010. Well, the issue wasn’t really with Exchange 2010 but with the OS it was installed on–Windows 2012. The Windows Failover Cluster in Windows 2012 has a few different requirements when it comes to DAGs in Exchange 2010.

To avoid the error above, again, we need to plan the DAG implementation by pre-staging the DAG in ADUC. Make note of the Exchange 2010 server that will be designated as the first DAG member.

  1. From the Computers container in ADUC, create a new computer object with the name to be used as the DAG name in Exchange 2010.
  2. Open the properties of the newly created computer object.
  3. From the Security tab, add the server that has been designed to be the first member of the DAG and assign it Full Control permissions.
  4. Now, disable the computer account created in step 1.

Now that the DAG has been pre-staged in AD, the process for creating the Exchange 2010 DAG and adding members should proceed without further issue.


Big thanks to my colleague (@zecchino) for finding the resolution and Justin Gao for the write-up.


3 thoughts on “Configure DAG with Exchange 2010 hosted on Windows 2012

  1. Todd,

    Besides your post above, do you know of any other posts related to creating a Exchange 2010 SP3 DAG on Windows 2012? I see references that it is supported, but I haven’t seen much how-to’s on this subject. Do I just follow the normal DAG creation steps?

    We got new storage, and I was hoping to join an existing DAG. But I wanted to do a install on Windows 2012, and then I discover I can’t add a Windows 2012 (Exchange 2010 SP3) system into an existing DAG with Windows 2008 R2 (Exchange 2010 SP3). I was hoping to activate the new DB copies on the new storage. But no go.


  2. Other posts on Exchange 2010 SP3 DAG on Windows 2012? Only what I used for references at the bottom of the article.

    Unfortunately, you cannot mix and match OS or Exchange versions with DAG. I do recommend that you install a new server like you did, move mailboxes to it. Then flatten the 2008 R2 servers, rebuild as 2012, and create your DAG with only 2012 servers.

    Alternately, why not move to Exchange 2016?

  3. I got the new DAG going on Windows 2012 and Exchange 2010 SP3.

    Exchange 2016? Folks wanted to get on the faster storage as soon as possible. Also, we have a lot of 3rd party system integrations to consider prior to upgrading.


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