Instalar Cumulative Updates & service packs en Exchange 2013 (English)

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Preparation Tasks

Before installing any cumulative updates you should:

  • Download the CU or Service Pack setup file from the Microsoft Download Center (do not download from third party sites) and extract it to a folder on each server
  • Take a confirmed backup of Active Directory
  • Take a confirmed backup of your existing Exchange 2013 servers and databases
  • Have documented any customizations such as OWA, config files on servers, registry changes, Lync integration, or third party add-ons

Installing Cumulative Updates and Service Packs

Cumulative updates and Service Packs should be installed in the internet-facing site first, before installing in other sites in the organization.

The first servers to be updated in a site are the Mailbox servers. The Client Access servers are updated second. If you have multi-role servers installed then both roles are updated at the same time anyway, and you should simply start with the internet-facing servers.

During the deployment of a cumulative update within a site that contains load-balanced Client Access server or Database Availability Group members there will be a period where servers are not at exactly the same version. Although this is expected and supported, it is not supported to stay in that state for a long period of time.

In other words, you should plan to update all DAG members within a short period of time, and not allow them to run at different versions for days, weeks or months.


Paso 1: Updating Mailbox Servers

Mailbox servers in a multi-server environment, whether installed as standalone or as a multi-role server, should be placed into maintenance mode before installing the cumulative update.

Note that the redirect target server must be provided as a fully qualified domain name.

  • Set-ServerComponentState E15MB1 –Component HubTransport –State Draining –Requester Maintenance
  • Redirect-Message -Server E15MB1 –Target

If the server is a DAG member proceed to the next section which contains additional steps for DAG members, otherwise put the server into maintenance mode with the following command.

  • Set-ServerComponentState E15MB1 –Component ServerWideOffline –State InActive –Requester Maintenance

Exchange MVP Michael Van Horenbeeck has published a script for automating the process of starting and stopping maintenance mode.

Paso 2: .-Updating Mailbox Servers that are Database Availability Group Members

In addition to placing Mailbox servers in maintenance mode any DAG members also need to have active mailbox databases moved to another DAG member, and be blocked from activation while the cumulative update is being installed.

Suspend the DAG member from the cluster.

  • Suspend-ClusterNode –Name E15MB1

Disable database copy activation.

  • Set-MailboxServer E15MB1 –DatabaseCopyActivationDisabledAndMoveNow $true

Review the existing database copy auto activation policy, so that you can return it to the same configuration after you’ve completed the upgrade.

  • Get-MailboxServer E15MB1 | Select DatabaseCopyAutoActivationPolicy

Set the auto activation policy to “Blocked”. If the policy is already set to “Blocked” then there is no action required.

  • Set-MailboxServer E15MB1 –DatabaseCopyAutoActivationPolicy Blocked

Put the server into maintenance mode.

  • Set-ServerComponentState E15MB1 –Component ServerWideOffline –State InActive –Requester Maintenance

Once Updates successfully installed, you can reverse the process with commands to bring the server back into an active state, resume it within the cluster, allow database activation within the DAG, and resume normal transport processing.

Paso 3: Taking Servers Out of Maintenance Mode

To take the server out of maintenance mode after the upgrade the process is reversed. Make sure that you return the database auto activation policy to the original setting if it was not “Unrestricted”.

  • Set-ServerComponentState E15MB1 –Component ServerWideOffline –State Active –Requester Maintenance
  • Resume-ClusterNode –Name E15MB1

  • Set-MailboxServer E15MB1 –DatabaseCopyAutoActivationPolicy Unrestricted
  • Set-MailboxServer E15MB1 –DatabaseCopyActivationDisabledAndMoveNow $false
  • Set-ServerComponentState E15MB1 –Component HubTransport –State Active –Requester Maintenance

Exchange MVP Michael Van Horenbeeck has published a script for automating the process of starting and stopping maintenance mode.

Updating Load-Balanced Client Access Servers

If you are running load-balanced Client Access servers in a site then you should configure the load balancer to remove the server from the pool of hosts, and allow any existing connections to close, before you install the cumulative update.

The exact steps for this will depend on the load balancing solution that you use, and you should refer to your vendor documentation for those.

As each Client Access server is updated join it to the pool again and then repeat the process for the next server.


Upgrading the Servers with CU

Active Directory Preparation Tasks

Some cumulative updates will include Active Directory schema changes. In those cases the following steps will be required.

Note: The AD preparation tasks are not required to be run separately to the upgrade of Exchange, unless in circumstances where you need to separate the tasks to different teams with different permissions, or if you have a multi-domain forest and want to control the AD changes.

Before applying the schema update follow the steps provided by Michael B Smith to retrieve the existing Exchange schema version, so that you can compare it before and after the AD preparation steps have been completed to verify that the schema update was applied.

  1. When the Active Directory changes have been applied, on each server run the upgrade. Run setup.exe /PrepareSchema /IAcceptExchangeServerLicenseTerms (requires Enterprise Admins and Schema Admins permissions, and must be performed in the same AD Site as the Schema Master on a server with the RSAT-ADDS-Tools feature installed – the Schema Master itself would meet these requirements)
  2. Run setup.exe /PrepareAD /IAcceptExchangeServerLicenseTerms
  3. Run setup.exe /PrepareDomain /IAcceptExchangeServerLicenseTerms in each domain in your forest that contains Exchange servers or mailboxes


Upgrading the Servers with CU

Cumulative updates can be applied using either the command line or graphical setup, whichever you prefer. Both options are demonstrated below.

  • Follow the pre-installation processes outlined earlier in this article depending on the server roles installed.
  • Do not run the upgrade from the Exchange Management Shell as this will cause it to fail due to locked files. Run the upgrade from an elevated cmd prompt.
  • If you receive a warning that the Office Filter Pack is not installed this can be ignored, as it is not a required component for Exchange Server 2013.
  • Set the PowerShell execution policy on each server being upgraded to Unrestricted, as this may sometimes cause issues with update. Refer to KB981474.

Caution: a cumulative update is a full reinstall of Exchange Server 2013. If it is interrupted, or fails part way through the installation, you may need to perform a server recovery. There is also no way to uninstall a cumulative update.

Note: Exchange 2013 cumulative updates stop the “Microsoft Exchange FrontEnd Transport” and “Microsoft Exchange Transport” services during the pre-requisites check. If you do not proceed with the installation you will need to manually restart the Microsoft Exchange Transport service.

Upgrading Using the Command Line

In an elevated command prompt run the following command from the location where you extracted the cumulative update files.

  • Setup /m:upgrade /IAcceptExchangeServerLicenseTerms

The command prompt window will display the progress as the upgrade proceeds. The upgrade itself is a lengthy process so you should allow plenty of time for each server.

After the cumulative update has been install restart the server if prompted to do so.

If you had placed the server into maintenance mode then you can run the commands or the script for stopping maintenance mode after the installation is finished (refer to the notes above).


Upgrading Using the Graphical Setup

From the location that you extracted the cumulative update files run Setup.exe. It is recommend to allow setup to connect to the internet and check for updates.

When the update check has completed click Next to continue.

Setup will begin copying files. This can take several minutes depending on your server’s performance capacity.

Setup will detect that this is an upgrade installation.






You will need to accept the license agreement each time you upgrade a server.

Setup will perform a pre-requisites check. If any pre-requisites are not met setup will stop and warn you about them, otherwise you will be able to proceed with the upgrade.

The upgrade itself is a lengthy process and you may find that some steps appear to have hung with no progress. This may be a bug with the graphical setup, whereas the command line setup will typically show the percentage progress as it goes.

When setup is complete you will be prompted to restart the server if required.

After the cumulative update has been install restart the server if prompted to do so.

If you had placed the server into maintenance mode then you can run the commands or the script for stopping maintenance mode after the installation is finished (refer to the notes above).



Post-Installation Tasks

After deploying an Exchange 2013 cumulative update there are a number of post-installation tasks that may be required.

Rebalance the Database Availability Group

After you’ve updated all of your DAG members there is a good chance that the active databases will not be evenly distributed across the DAG, or won’t be on their first activation preference. This process is the same for Exchange 2013 as it is for Exchange 2010.

  • cd $exscripts
  • C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\V15\scripts>.\RedistributeActiveDatabases.ps1 -DagName E15DAG -BalanceDbsByActivationPreference

Restoring Customizations

After you have completed updating your servers you will need to re-apply any customizations that you had documented during the preparation steps above.

Verifying Server Health

Here are some suggestions for health checking your Exchange 2013 servers after applying updates.

  1. Check the cluster nodes are all up – verify that you have not left any DAG members suspended in the cluster by running the Get-ClusterNode cmdlet on one of the DAG members.
  2. Test service health – use the Test-ServiceHealth cmdlet to verify that all required services are running on each server.
  3. Test MAPI connectivity to every database – use the Test-MAPIConnectivity cmdlet to verify that all databases are mounted and accessible.
  4. Check the database copy status for DAGs – use the Get-MailboxDatabaseCopyStatus cmdlet to verify that all database copies, copy/replay queues, and content indexes are healthy.
  5. Test replication health for DAGs – use the Test-ReplicationHealth cmdlet on each DAG member to verify replication health is good.
  6. Check the database activation policy for each Mailbox server – verify that each Mailbox server that is in a DAG has the correct database activation policy for your environment.
  7. Check server component status – use Get-ServerComponent to verify that you have not left any servers in maintenance mode.



Installing Exchange 2013 CU1 on DAG member servers – some care and maintenance mode required

Once Microsoft released Exchange 2013 CU1 on April 2, thoughts turned to installing the new software. If you already have Exchange 2013 RTM on your servers, CU1 is installed using a build-to-build (B2B) upgrade (setup /m:upgrade). Because a cumulative update is essentially a brand new version of Exchange that can be installed on a new server without the need to first install the RTM version of Exchange 2013, it takes a little longer for the installation to complete than when you apply a roll-up update to Exchange 2007 or Exchange 2010. However, the installation is straightforward and with a little planning, should not cause any concern.

These are the steps that I followed to successfully update a number of multi-role Exchange 2013 servers running on Windows 2012:

  1. Make sure that servers are up to date with any patches made available through Windows Update. 
  2. Reboot servers, if necessary. It’s frustrating to get into the setup process only to find that a server reboot is required.
  3. If upgrading servers in a DAG, make sure that each server is put into maintenance mode before proceeding with the upgrade (see below)
  4. Run the Exchange Setup program and follow the prompts
  5. Put the servers back into production once the upgrade finishes (CU1 required my servers to be rebooted, so I did this)

The only issue I ran into was when Setup queried the lack of the Microsoft Office 2010 Filter Pack on the server. This is technically correct insofar as transport rules and content indexing won’t be able to process OneNote and Publisher attachments if you do not install the filter pack. However, it’s safe to ignore the warning as Search Foundation includes the necessary filters for the vast majority of file formats encountered in email, which is what I did.

If you run Exchange 2013 servers in a DAG, you need to put the server into maintenance mode before you apply the CU1 update to inform Exchange’s Managed Availability monitoring and recovery infrastructure that the server is under administrator control and is not a candidate to accept workload. For example, you would not want Active Manager to attempt to activate a database copy on the server while the update is proceeding.


Exchange 2013 includes the Set-ServerComponentState cmdlet to control server components. These commands instruct server ExServer1 to drain down its transport queues and not accept any further messages, redirect any new messages to another transport server, suspend it from the cluster that underpins the DAG, block database activation and move any databases that are currently active on the server, and then set the server into an “inactive” state for maintenance.

  • Set-ServerComponentState –Identity ExServer1 –Component HubTransport –State Draining –Requester Maintenance
  • Redirect-Message -Server ExServer1 -Target ExServer2
  • Suspend-ClusterNode –Name ExServer1
  • Set-MailboxServer –Identity ExServer1 –DatabaseCopyActivationDisabledAndMoveNow $True
  • Set-MailboxServer –Identity ExServer1 –DatabaseCopyAutoActivationPolicy Blocked
  • Set-ServerComponentState –Identity ExServer1 –Component ServerWideOffline –State InActive –Requester Maintenance


Once CU1 is successfully installed, you can reverse the process with commands to bring the server back into an active state, resume it within the cluster, allow database activation within the DAG, and resume normal transport processing.

  • Set-ServerComponentState –Identity ExServer1 –Component ServerWideOffline –State Active –Requester Maintenance
  • Resume-ClusterNode –Name ExServer1
  • Set-MailboxServer –Identity ExServer1 –DatabaseCopyAutoActivationPolicy Unrestricted
  • Set-MailboxServer –Identity ExServer1 –DatabaseCopyActivationDisabledAndMoveNow $False
  • Set-ServerComponentState –Identity ExServer1 –Component HubTransport –State Active –Requester Maintenance

If you want some scripts to do the typing for you, check out the ones published by Michael van Horenbeeck.

Servers that return from maintenance mode won’t support any active databases so you should consider rebalancing workload within the DAG by switching over active databases from other servers, not least the server that is next due for the upgrade.

All in all, the Exchange B2B upgrade mechanism is now a pretty well-oiled machine that works without too much fuss and bother. Upgrading an Exchange 2013 server to CU1 won’t be painful; coping with the need to update servers every thirteen weeksto keep current might be a different matter.

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