During setup of Exchange Server 2013 you may encounter the following error while preparing Active Directory or installing the first Exchange server in the forest.

Exchange 2013 Setup Error: "The system cannot find the file specified"
Exchange 2013 Setup Error

If you are running setup on a Windows Server 2012 server the error is:

The following error was generated when “$error.Clear();

install-ExchangeSchema -LdapFileName ($roleInstallPath + “Setup\Data\”+$RoleSchemaPrefix + “schema0.ldf”)

” was run: “The system cannot find the file specified”.

On a Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1 server the error is:

The Active Directory Schema is not up-to-date and Ldifde.exe is not install
ed on this computer. You must install Ldifde.exe by opening Windows Powershell,
running ‘Import-Module ServerManager’, then running ‘Add-WindowsFeature RSAT-ADD
S’. Alternately you can restart setup on a domain controller.

These errors occur because Exchange setup is attempting to use the LDIFDE.exe tool to update the Active Directory schema for Exchange Server 2013, and the tool is not installed by default on these operating systems.

The solution is to install the RSAT-ADDS components on the server.

For Windows Server 2008 R2 (SP1 or later), in PowerShell run:

Import-Module ServerManager

Add-WindowsFeature RSAT-ADDS

For Windows Server 2012, in PowerShell run:

Install-WindowsFeature RSAT-ADDS

Re-run setup and the error should not occur this time.

About the Author

Paul Cunningham

Paul is a former Microsoft MVP for Office Apps and Services. He works as a consultant, writer, and trainer specializing in Office 365 and Exchange Server. Paul no longer writes for Practical365.com.


  1. 魏嘉昌

    This save my time,Thank you very much.

  2. Jonas Nimmo

    Works for Exch 2010 too

  3. Travis Crank

    Thank you! Burned ANOTHER hour on this problem following an issue with Hyper-V virtual switch, etc. Didn’t think I’d ever accomplish my EX2013SP1 install in VM for the first time. Prior to this was the insistence of NLA flopping all my network interfaces into Public, even for domain members. Crazytown…

  4. Akhilesh

    still same issue hitting. replication also showing “there are no more endpoint available from endpoint mapper ” error.
    please help.

  5. Paul

    Very clear and helpful (unlike all the of Exchange installation routine..)

    Top man – you *are* the exchange resource on the Internet !

  6. Daniel

    if you installed the tool and still get the same error: Check if all domaincontrollers have a clear replication state.

    AD Sites and Services – > Sites -> “Your Site” -> Servers -> “Domaincontroller” -> NTDS Settings -> Site-Link -> All Tasks -> Replicate Now.

    hope this will help. it took some hours to find out.

    1. Sergiu


    2. Chris

      YAY!!!!! This was it!

  7. andrei

    This was very helpful. Had the exact same problem adn i was able to get past the error after applying this fix. Thank you!

  8. Rufat

    You saved my time….. thanks you a lot MR 🙂

  9. Mohamed Elnemer

    Thank you for the help 🙂

  10. Quicktech

    thank you for this helpful post
    Just got me past that exact issues on a migration from SBS 2003 -> Server 2012 w/ Exchange 2010.


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