Connect to Exchange servers using remote PowerShell

If you don't have the Exchange management tools installed on your local computer, you can use Windows PowerShell to create a remote PowerShell session to an Exchange server. It's a simple three-step process, where you enter your credentials, provide the required connection settings, and then import the Exchange cmdlets into your local Windows PowerShell session.


What do you need to know before you begin?

  • Estimated time to complete: less than 5 minutes

  • After you connect, the cmdlets and parameters that you have or don't have access to is controlled by role-based access control (RBAC). For more information, see Exchange Server permissions.

  • You can use the following versions of Windows:

    • Windows 11
    • Windows 10
    • Windows 8.1
    • Windows Server 2019
    • Windows Server 2016
    • Windows Server 2012 or Windows Server 2012 R2
    • Windows 7 Service Pack 1 (SP1)*
    • Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1*

    * This version of Windows has reached end of support, and is now supported only in Azure virtual machines. To use this version of Windows, you need to install the Microsoft .NET Framework 4.5 or later and then an updated version of the Windows Management Framework: 3.0, 4.0, or 5.1 (only one). For more information, see Install the .NET Framework, Windows Management Framework 3.0, Windows Management Framework 4.0, and Windows Management Framework 5.1.

  • Windows PowerShell needs to be configured to run scripts, and by default, it isn't. You get the following error when you try to connect:

    Files cannot be loaded because running scripts is disabled on this system. Provide a valid certificate with which to sign the files.

    To require all PowerShell scripts that you download from the internet are signed by a trusted publisher, run the following command in an elevated Windows PowerShell window (a Windows PowerShell window you open by selecting Run as administrator):

    Set-ExecutionPolicy RemoteSigned

    For more information about execution policies, see About Execution Policies.


Having problems? Ask for help in the Exchange Server forum.

Connect to a remote Exchange server

  1. On your local computer, open Windows PowerShell, and run the following command:

    $UserCredential = Get-Credential

    In the Windows PowerShell Credential Request dialog box that opens, enter your user principal name (UPN) (for example, and password, and then select OK.

  2. Replace <ServerFQDN> with the fully qualified domain name of your Exchange server (for example, and run the following command:

    $Session = New-PSSession -ConfigurationName Microsoft.Exchange -ConnectionUri http://<ServerFQDN>/PowerShell/ -Authentication Kerberos -Credential $UserCredential

    Note: The ConnectionUri value is http, not https.

  3. Run the following command:

    Import-PSSession $Session -DisableNameChecking


Be sure to disconnect the remote PowerShell session when you're finished. If you close the Windows PowerShell window without disconnecting the session, you could use up all the remote PowerShell sessions available to you, and you'll need to wait for the sessions to expire. To disconnect the remote PowerShell session, run the following command:

Remove-PSSession $Session

How do you know that you've successfully connected?

After Step 3, the Exchange cmdlets are imported into your local Windows PowerShell session and tracked by a progress bar. If you don't receive any errors, you connected successfully. A quick test is to run an Exchange cmdlet (for example, Get-Mailbox) and review the results.

If you receive errors, check the following requirements:

  • A common problem is an incorrect password. Run the three steps again, and pay close attention to the user name and password you enter in Step 1.

  • The account you use to connect to the Exchange server needs to be enabled for remote PowerShell access. For more information, see Control remote PowerShell access to Exchange servers.

  • TCP port 80 traffic needs to be open between your local computer and the Exchange server. It's probably open, but it's something to consider if your organization has a restrictive network access policy.

See also

The cmdlets that you use in this article are Windows PowerShell cmdlets. For more information about these cmdlets, see the following articles.