Background: My test lab Exchange environment WAS a single 2010 SP3 CAS/HT and a single mailbox server. Then all hell broke loose (the environment was turned off for 5 months, and the domain decided not to want to live on this planet anymore).
Anyway, cutting to the long and the short of it, I decided to start again completely.
- Domain was set up again from scratch (2012 domain controllers at a 2003 functional level). We’re talking a brand new domain and brand new DC’s. So there should be NO trace of the old environment.
- Exchange server was built again from scratch. This also involved running setup /prepareschema to update the domain schema ready for the Exchange environment. This was ran as an administrator, in a domain administrator session on the CAS server. The domain admin was also an enterprise and schema admin.
At this point, things went pear shaped. I started receiving registry error messages at the install level.
[ERROR] The registry key "SOFTWARE\Microsoft\ExchangeServer\v14\Transport" does not exist under "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE".
The fix (thanks to http://www.righthandedexchange.com/2013/02/how-to-properly-recover-exchange-server.html) was as simple as it was annoying. Create the damn key manually in the registry. This then removed the above error and the install continued.
But again it just went south from there
[ERROR] Service 'MSExchangeTransport' failed to start due to error:'Cannot start service MSExchangeTransport on computer '.'.'.
Now, the site above that gave the registry reference also suggested in this instance to only use the original 2010 installer. However, I had downloaded a full 2010 SP3 ISO from MSDN, so this really (IMHO) wasn’t the issue.