How to create a Database Availability Group in Exchange 2013

Posted on December 4, 2012 | Category :DAG, Exchange 2013 | 25 Comments

Well, Creating Database Availability Group (DAG) Became much more simpler,

But configuring it properly is the best part to have it efficiently working.
So lets see how to create a 2 node DAG ,

NOTE **Am not going to Describe about load balancing for Client Connectivity in this blog

I will describe my environment now

I have 2 AD sites

Every AD site has Exchange Servers



First we will prepare the Environment for the DAG
I will have my Primary LAN . Will add a Replication LAN ,for my DAG replication for all the nodes which am planning to add in DAG


Verify my NIC binding are Correct

Advanced – Advanced Settings


1.Primary Network

2.Replication Network


Make Sure they are in a Different Class of IP

Primary Network –


Replication Network –

*No Default Gateway

*No DNS Servers Set

*Add a persistent Route for all the nodes with the Replication NIC’s

Replication NICs should ping with other replication NIC’s – So that DAG replication will happen through these NIC’s

Port Used : 64327


Now there is no Single point of failure on my LAN
If my replication network fails it can failover to the production network. vice versa.

When creating a DAG with Mailbox servers running Windows Server 2012 in an Active Directory environment with Windows Server 2008 R2 directory servers, you must pre-stage the cluster network object before adding members to the DAG. For detailed steps, see Pre-Stage the Cluster Network Object for a Database Availability Group.


Lets See How to pre stage a Cluster CNO object.

Open ADUC – New Computer Account


Enter the DAG Name


Disable the Account


Give Full Control for Exchange Trusted Subsystems


Add the First Node Computer account and Give Full Control

Note -  Choose Object types to Select Computer Accounts



Apply the Permissions

Reference link -

Pre-Stage the Cluster Network Object for a Database Availability Group

Now we will  Create a DAG ,


Login to EAC –Servers – Database Availability Groups – Choose New




* DAG name

* Witness Server Name

* Witness Location

Add Two DAG ips’ (Static IP for the DAG )

1 for Primary Site

1 for DR site

if you have different subnet or different class of ip on either Sites.
Have Two IP address for the DAG so that DAG resource can be online while failover on either sites
If you have only one Subnet , then you can have only one Ip address for the DAG

Now my DAG Configuration is Ready

Add members to it.

Choose Manage DAG Membership



Adding the members


Now you can add the other DAG memberwhere it should get added without any issues.


Great !! Now your DAG is ready !!



How to Add Database Copies in Exchange 2013

Satheshwaran Manoharan

Exchange MVP , Publisher of
I have been supporting/Deploying/Designing Microsoft Exchange for some years . If you any Questions ?. Please share you thoughts via Comments.

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Comments 25

  1. Amit Reply


  2. Leo Reply

    Hi Sathesh,

    Thanks for your article. I have a question here…By default it’s recommended to enable IPV6 for Exchange 2013, if we disable this there is an issue with the starting transport service.

    I noticed while installing the DAG IPV6 is disabled for MAPI (Primary) network, will this will create an issue.

    • 13/03/27

      Database availability group member
      Ipv6 Supported = Yes, You need not to disable it, It should work without any problems

      Static IPv6 addresses are supported by Windows Server 2008 and the Cluster service. However, using static IPv6 addresses goes against best practices. Exchange 2013 on Windows Server 2008 doesn’t support the configuration of static IPv6 addresses during setup.
      Failover clusters support Intra-site Automatic Tunnel Addressing Protocol (ISATAP). They support only IPv6 addresses that allow for dynamic registration in DNS. Link local addresses can’t be used in a cluster

  3. 14/03/12

    Great guide and tutorial. I just have one quick question. Is it possible to create DAG without third server that will act as witness server? Currently, we have installed two Exchange Server 2013 on Windows 2008 R2 Enterprise SP1 on two HP Proliant Servers. The AD on the Live Server is being replicated to the AD on the Backup Exchange. We want to configure DAG to replicate the mailbox database of the Live Server to the Backup Server. I have read some tutorials that it is mandatory to have 3rd server that will act as Witness Server because the DAG members should not be a witness server.

    • 14/03/20

      First Exchange on DC is not a Good thing.
      Having witness on Exchange server is not possible
      in a two node dag . without witness . Its not going to fail over .when one node goes down.

  4. Vaibhav Reply

    Hi Sathesh,

    How about Dynamic Quorum feature of Exchange 2013 DAG? We should be able to use it without having witness server.


  5. Sunil Reply

    Hi Sathesh,

    I have question regarding exchange 2010 SP3, 2 node DAG in Site A and Site B with users are hosted on both sites. Please suggest the configuration steps.

    Site A
    1. CAHT1
    2. MBX1
    Site B
    1. CAHT2
    2. MBX2

  6. 14/07/12

    please help me when i add new member of dag

    i have 2 server
    1. CAS,MB
    1. MB only
    3. witness server is 2012 , i add exchange trsut in local administrator group, create cno but
    cant create directory and i get this erorro

    A server-side database availability group administrative operation failed. Error The operation failed. CreateCluster errors may result from incorrectly configured static addresses. Error: An error occurred while attempting a cluster operation. Error: Cluster API ‘”CreateCluster() failed with 0x13c1. Error: The cluster IP address is already in use”‘ failed.. [Server: dag-srv.pop.local]

    A server-side database availability group administrative operation failed. Error The operation failed. CreateCluster errors may result from incorrectly configured static addresses. Error: An error occurred while attempting a cluster operation. Error: Cluster API ‘”CreateCluster() failed with 0x13c1. Error: The cluster IP address is already in use”‘ failed.. [Server: Mail-srv.pop.local]

  7. Naushad Ambar Reply

    Excellent job sathesh…….

  8. Maged Reply

    Hi Sathesh,

    So If I have 1 Mailbox and Client access server and another server has the mailbox role only
    do I have to build new server as a witness for them?

    Can’t I use the File server I already have or there will be high traffic for both witness and file server?

    Last question please, How to distribute my users on the two servers I need two divide the users between the two servers?

    • 14/09/21

      Install Both Servers with All the roles. Create a DAG . and place a Load balancer in front of it . This is the recommended way .

      Witness server and file server can be the same . Witness server just need to be reachable when DAG members goes down.

  9. Manas Reply


    Satheesh. What about the configuration of DAG network group.

    I have received error after configuring the above. It mentioned that DAG Network is not configured

    • 15/01/07

      If you have multiple Nics , you can add them manually,. MAPI Network – And Replication network without gateway/DNS

  10. Natesh Reply


    what is the network configured between your sites? i sit P2P or MPLS with data?

  11. Natesh Reply


    How to test that replication NIC’s are communicating to each other over WAN?


  12. BANOOJ PV Reply

    Hello Sathesh,
    I am setting 2 node DAG in E2013,should we use witness server as client access machine or any other server os?
    How should be a witness server ? we have to create a “shared” folder ? Kindly guide me on this.
    By Banooj_Bangalore +917829422645

    • 15/03/08

      It can be any domain joined machine on the same site. Prefer to combine the roles . don’t split them

  13. Subash Reply

    Dear Team,
    I am going to create Exchange server 2013 with DAG .. MY setup

    1 AD
    2 Exchange server MBX with client Access is it enough ? or need witness server ?

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