Exchange hybrid deployment with servers in different locations

Frequent Contributor

Hi there,

one of our customers is planning to migrate to O365 (Exchange Online in first line) from Exchange 2010 SP3. We want to provide a proper advise how to migrate.


They utilize a single AD and a single Exchange Org, but with different mailbox servers (no DAG) in different countries. Gladly they want to migrate to a single tenant.


Now the question is, would a hybrid deployment be the weapon of choice? As I'm correct, the hybrid deployment is per Org, so there would be one hybrid deployment.


Let's say the the main site is in "country A" and we want to trigger the remote mailbox move for a mailbox hosted on a server in "country B". Would be the hybrid deployment the best approach or would it be better to utilize a migration tool for the different locations?


Kind regards,


8 Replies

Hi @woelki ,


Is advised that you have an Hybrid server in the infrastructure. You can install an Exchange 2013 or 2016 on the same Exchange infrastructure and then after configure hybrid and test mail flow, migration some test mailboxes you can migrate directly from the Exchange to Office 365.


You can read more here

Hi @Nuno Silva,


thanks for your reply. I ofter heard that you should deploy hybrid starting with Exchange 2010 or higher, but why? I have here two articles which are confusing me.

The older one from year 2016 about the hybrid configuration wizard for Exchange 2010:

Office 365 Hybrid Configuration wizard for Exchange 2010


And the newer one:

The Microsoft Hybrid Agent Public Preview


Kind regards,




Hi @woelki ,


Is advised to have Hybrid with Exchange 2013 or 2016 that can coexist with your Exchange 2010.


The first link is not advised to follow because is with Exchange 2010. The second one that is in preview also not advised and supported in production and have some limitiations.


The better solution is to have an Exchange 2013 or 2016 hybrid has I have mentioned before.

Hi @Nuno Silva,


one additional question. Will the 2013/2016 server be created in the same Exchange Org or is it a dedicated one?


Kind regards,


Hi @woelki ,


In the same Exchange Organization.

Will you migrate all your mailboxes to Exchange Online? If yes, upgrade after the migration, Exchange 2010 support ends 2010.


There is no kind of "hybrid server" and if you plan to migrate all your objects to Exchange Online, you don't need to place any new Exchange server in your org. But keep in mind that you have to upgrade anyway until 2020. As a best practices advice, do it after the migration to Exchange Online, and only for one site.

@Dominik Hoefling I just wanted to ask something similar. Do I understand correctly that you recommend to install the hybrid deployment via the HCW directly on a current Exchange 2010 server?


I understand that the most current RU/CU has to be installed, anyway if I use the hybrid deployment on the Exchange 2010, what are the differences to utilizing it on Exchange 2013/2016?


Our customer has a man-in-the-middle datacenter provider and it looks like if the customer would now order an additional server there are even more costs. If they would wait, the datacenter provider would "upgrade" the current Exchange server(s) (I know technically it is no upgrade, it's a new setup with a mailbox migration) with no additional costs.


So our customer simply wants to stick to the current Exchange servers.


I just want to ensure, when we now run the HCW on a Exchange 2010 server, that there will be no issues, when the hybrid deployment will be "moved" to a newer one.

@woelki you can stick with Exchange 2010 an go hybrid, sure. But please keep in mind that in February 2010 the support for Exchange 2010 will end.


As a best practices if you build up coexistence with Exchange 2016, you should publish your services like EWS, Autodiscover, etc. also on Exchange 2016 and then go hybrid.


In short: if you plan to migrate most of your mailboxes to Exchange Online until the support of Exchange 2010 ends, then I would recommend go with 2010. You can do an "upgrade" to Exchange 2016 afterwards as well.


Hope this helps.