Upgrade Exchange Server 2013 RTM to SP1 on Windows Server 2012 R2

The Exchange Server 2013 RTM version number is 15.0 (Build 516.32). We are planing to upgrade it to Exchange Server 2013 Sp1 which is [Build no – 15.00.0847.032]. 

Before proceeding with the upgrade make sure you have a proper backup in place. Also, update your server with the latest patches.

You can check your current Exchange Schema Version using the Powershell command “Exchange Schema Version = ” + ([ADSI](“LDAP://CN=ms-Exch-Schema-Version-Pt,” + ([ADSI]”LDAP://RootDSE”).schemaNamingContext)).rangeUpper”

  • Make sure you have downloaded the setup files to your local server
  • Check and confirm that the mail flow is working
  • Execute the command “Get-ServerComponentState ServerName” and confirm that the status of all Exchange components are Active
  • Execute the command “Set-ServerComponentState ServerName –Component HubTransport –State Draining –Requester Maintenance &”Set-ServerComponentState ServerName –Component UMCallRouter –State Draining –Requester Maintenance” to put the components in Maintenance Mode
  • Execute the command “Set-ServerComponentState ServerName –Component ServerWideOffline –State inactive –Requester Maintenance” to change the status of all the components to Inactive state
  • Check and confirm that all components are in Inactive state using the command “Get-ServerComponentState ServerName


  • Now launch Exchange Management Shell and navigate to the Exchange 2013 SP1 setup folder
  • Execute the command “setup.exe /preparead /IAcceptExchangeServerLicenseTerms” to prepare your AD server for the upgrade

Note : You may face several issues during this process. The issues that were reported during the upgrade while I was working are discussed here :-

A reboot from a previous installation is pending. Please restart the system and rerun Setup.


Checked the following registry keys :

  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Updates\UpdateExeVolatile
  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\PendingFileRenameOperations

Since I was not able to find the Updates key, had to manually create the same along with the string value UpdateExeVolatile. The value of the string was set to 0 [which indicates that system restart is not required]. Also, deleted the key PendingFileRenameOperations.

After performing the above steps, re ran the PrepareAD command again. The Prerequisites and Organization Checks completed successfully.


  • Next step is to run the Setup.exe file from its location. Double click the Setup.exe file and proceed. You might face the below error at some point during the readiness checks ;

Service ‘WMSVC’ failed to reach status ‘Running; on this server

Error 2

Upon searching regarding the error online, it led me to Web Management Service in IIS Manager.

  • Launch IIS Manager
  • Select the Server and on the right hand side, under Management double click Management Service


  • Assign the SSL certificate you have previously installed to the service and Start the WMSVC service


This resolved the issue and the setup installation completed successfully.

Now the pending work is to remove the Exchange services from the Maintenance Mode. Execute the below commands for the same :

  • Set-ServerComponentState ServerName –Component ServerWideOffline –State active –Requester Maintenance
  • Set-ServerComponentState ServerName –Component HubTransport –State active –Requester Maintenance
  • Set-ServerComponentState ServerName –Component UMCallRouter –State active –Requester Maintenance

Confirm that all Exchange components are in Active state by executing the command : Get-ServerComponentState ServerName

Restart the Exchange Services and test the mail flow. Confirm that the SP1 upgarde completed successfully by executing the ‘Get-ExchangeServer | fl‘ in EMS.


Verify the build number in the above screen shot.


Note:- Please also check the link ‘https://anishjohnes.wordpress.com/2014/08/14/resolve-mail-flow-issues-with-exchange-server-2013-after-failed-exchange-sp1-upgrade/’ for resolving issues with SP1 upgrade. 🙂


Reference :

  1. http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc164360(v=exchg.80).aspx
  2. http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/exchange/en-US/7f193833-de94-408b-91ad-266d6811a26b/exchange-2013-cu2-to-cu3-upgrade-error?forum=exchangesvrdeploy

Resolve mail flow issues with Exchange Server 2013 after failed Exchange SP1 upgrade

I received a request recently to upgrade a client Exchange 2013 Server, which is the RTM version [15.0 (Build 516.32)] to SP1 [ Build no – 15.00.0847.032].

The set up was downloaded to the local Exchange Server at first. The latest updates were installed on the server. Tried the installation from the setup.exe file. However, the installation got stuck at 90 % of the readiness checks. Hence, had to re-initiate the unattended installation from command prompt which too resulted in error during the pre-requisite checks. The error reported was as follows :


Tried rebooting the server once or twice but issue reoccurred. As per the Microsoft technet link “http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc164360(v=exchg.80).aspx” checked on the following registry keys :

  1. HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Updates\UpdateExeVolatile
  2. HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\PendingFileRenameOperations

However, I was unable to locate the keys in my server. Might be because I am using Windows Server 2012. Hence, had to manually create the registry keys and set the value as below:

  1. Navigated to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft
  2. Created the key Updates with a string value UpdateExeVolatile 
  3. The value of the string value was set to 0 [ indicates that system restart is not required ]

But still after performing the above changes,issue persisted. Since the office hours was above to start, I stopped working on the upgrade and checked the mail flow on the server. Unfortunately, due to my bad luck the mail flow was not working. 😦

The emails kept pending on the drafts folder in the mailbox. Following troubleshooting steps were performed on the server :

  • Checked the email queue in the Exchange server, but no pending emails were found
  • Restarted Microsoft Exchange Services and rebooted the exchange server
  • Checked the event log errors
  • Executed the command “Get-ServerComponentState ServerName” and got the following result


All the Exchange components were found to be inactive in background even though the Exchange services were found to be started in the Services.

  • Navigated to the following registry location


\v15\SERVERCOMPONENTSTATES and confirmed that the status of the components were down.


In the above figure; HealthApi is the Requester; in the data field 1:0:, 0 indicates that the service is down

Some services also uses another Requester which is Functional


  • Tried executing the command in EMS “Set-ServerComponentState -ID SERVERNAME -Component ServerWideOffline -State Active -Requester HealthApi” & “Set-ServerComponentState -ID SERVERNAME -Component ServerWideOffline -State Active -Requester Functional
  • Checked the status again using the command : “Get-ServerComponentState ServerName
  • Checked and confirmed that the component status changed to Active
  • Restarted the Exchange services and confirmed the mail flow


Reference Links :

  1. Checked the link http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc164360(v=exchg.80).aspx
  2. onthe365.wordpress.com/2013/12/10/exchange-2013-cu2cu3-fails-to-install-due-to-security-update/