Arcserve Exchange 2003 mailbox restore - Invalid destination path specified. please make a selection or enter a valid path for destination \\machine\dbaxchg2

I've come across a recent problem when trying to restore an Exchange 2003 mailbox at brick level to an Exchange 2010 environment using Arcserve.  The initial concern here is restoring from an old tape which was taken using an old version of Arcserve from an Exchange environment which no longer existed.

In short, I couldn't restore to the Exchange 2010 server when trying to restore to an alternative location.  I was attempting to use Arcserve 16.5 to read the tape and restore the data to an Exchange 2010 server which has the Arcserve 16 agent installed.

When I initially tested the restore, I ran a merge on the tape in Arcserve so I could see the available sessions.  To restore the mailbox I selected the source mailbox by drilling down to individual mailbox, I set the destination as the Exchange 2010 server and selected a subfolder of the Administrators mailbox also at brick level.  The message I received at the point of submitting the job was "Invalid destination path specified. Please make a selection or enter a valid path for destination \\machine\dbaxchg2" at the point

What was clear is the Exchange instance identity was different.  It listed my Exchange 2010 server as \\servername\dbaexsis\ instead of \\servername\dbachg2\ which was included in the error message.

I spoke to CA who confirmed that you cannot restore an Exchange 2003 mailbox to Exchange 2010 and said you need to set-up an Exchange 2003 server to restore too.  Obviously it really wasn't possible to install an older version of Exchange into a domain which already had a higher version listed in the schema.

So…I created an all in one VM as a DC, DNS and Exchange server, set-up an Administrator mailbox.  I rolled out the 16.5 Exchange agent onto the server for restore purposes.  I had to manually add a host entry file into the Arcserve backup server; this was because I couldn't look up the server by name due to being a separate domain.  I entered the details of the AD server in Arcserve so it would then list my Exchange 2003 VM.  You enter this by right clicking on Exchange organisation in Arcserve.  Alternatively you can specify the server manually as a restore destination.

The same error occurred at the point of submitting the job though.  It was still clear that the Exchange identity was the issue as the new server was listed as \\servername\dbaexsis\.

To resolve the issue I had install the 11.5 SP4 Arcserve agent onto the Exchange 2003 server, run through the set-up of the brick level agent.  Once that was done, the server instance showed as \\servername\dbachg2\ and I could then restore the mailbox to the Exchange 2003 environment.  We're keeping the VM, should we need it again.

Ben Owens


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