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Omer, Network Administrator
Category: Networking
Satisfied Customers: 309
Experience:  Been a Network Administrator for 5 years
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Is there an easy way to migrate from Server 2003 to Server

Customer Question

Is there an easy way to migrate from Server 2003 to Server 2008r2? Our old hardware is starting to fail and we have purchased replacement hardware. Can you point me toward something that would help me in moving all my 2003 info over to the new 2008r2 machine?
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Networking
Expert:  Danh replied 4 years ago.

If you want to assign the same IP address to the new machine, what you should do is first change the IP address of the existing machine to something different.


Then assign the previous machine's IP address on the new machine. Now you can have them both up and running concurrently.


From there, if you just want to copy data, you just create a share on the new server and copy files from the old server to the new server.


If you have applications, then it's recommended that you make sure they are supported on 2008 and reinstall them on the new machine.


If you have a database server, backup your database to a file, reinstall the database application onto the new machine ... restore the database file from the backup.


Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thanks for the response, however I should have been clearer with my question. I have a new server running Server 2008r2 as a domain server and I need to migrate the Active Directory settings etc, from a server running Server 2003 to the new 2008r2 machine.


Is there a simple way to accomplish this? A Program from microsoft perhaps? or aftermarket software? I've never attempted this before.



Expert:  Danh replied 4 years ago.
I see...I will have to opt out of this question since I have not done this in AD either.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
thanks for your effort and consideration. I'm affraid this may be something I simply have to dig for locally.
Expert:  Omer replied 4 years ago.

Hi I am one of the other experts here on Just

I have a couple questions


1) Is the server you are replacing the only Domain Controller you have in your active directory structure?


2) Have you already made the 2008 R2 box a domain controller in your environment?


3) Have you sent up active directory replication between the servers? (depending on your setup sometimes this can be done automatically)


4) Did you want the domain controller to have the same name as the one you are replacing?


5) Do you need the new server to run DNS and DHCP and use the same IP?



please let me know the answers to these questions

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thanks for your response Omer. These are great questions. Our network is small. Less than 25 clients and maybe 5 or 6 printers. We use a records management software that uses SQL server 2008 and will be migrated by the software supplier.


Here are the answers to your questions.


1. Only Domain Controller? Yes, it is.


2. 2008r2 box a Domain Controller? No, I have only installed the basic 2008r2 OS and have not even put it on the domain with the original DC.


3. Setup AD replication? No


4. New DC same name as old DC? Yes, I think this would make things easier down the road.


5. New server run DNS and DHCP / Same IP? I think I would, If this would eliminate having to change settings on the clients.


So the answers are

1. Yes

2. No

3. No

4. Yes (unless better not to)

5. Yes (unless there is better alternative)

Expert:  Omer replied 4 years ago.

Thanks for the responses.


Now there are a few steps I have a couple more questions


Now its never the best idea to rename a DC after it has been made one but it is doable.


Is the old DC dying complete or can it just not handle the services running on it?


Do your computers and printers have hard wired inputed IPS or do most things just use DHCP to update ?


Also does your environment run WINS ?


Have you run the forst prep for Windows Server 2008 R2 on your 2003 Domain controller?

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thanks again for the response Omer. Regarding your questions.


1. Old DC Dying? We have had hardware issues with it and would like to take it completely out of service when the system is transfered over to the new one. Our main software is due for a major update this year and will max out current system specs. (Server 2003 with 2 gigs RAM)


2. Client computers are DHCP however printers are static IPs.


3. Running WINS? I am not sure about this, however I am pretty sure there are no devices that require it so I believe we can run without it.


4. Run Forst prep for 2008r2 on 2003 DC? No

Expert:  Omer replied 4 years ago.

Ok so essentially this has a bunch of moving parts to it

Please let me know if you have an exchange server in your environment as that could add a step or two.


Prep your Active Directory forest for 2008r2 to do this you need to do the following on your domain controller


1) Put the Windows Server 2008 disc in the server

2) Open a command prompt

3) Explorer the Server Disc and open sources folder and find adprep.exe drag it into the cmd prompt If you can't drag 'n drop, you can simply type the path

4) In the Command Prompt window, type the following command: adprep /forestprep

5)In order to prevent accidental running of the command, you must press the "C" key on your keyboard, then press Enter. Command will begin to load a bunch of LDIF files containing all the necessary changes to the existing AD and Schema. Process will take a few moments.

6)When done, you'll be prompted. Make sure you let the existing Domain Controllers replicate all the changes throughout the entire forest BEFORE proceeding to the next step. However since you only have one this shouldn't take a long time

7)Since all your roles for Active Directory are on the same structure, you have to run it again to do the infrastructure prep its very similar to the forest prep you open the command prompt drag the file and this time in the command prompt type in adprep /domainprep this will take far lest time


Once you do this your domain will be ready for a windows 2008 R2 Domain Controller

Then you go through the process of making the Windows 2008 R2 server a domain controller. By running dcpromo on the box


You will now have 2 domain controllers you will want to run the Active Directory Sites and services and replicate the active directory between the two servers.


This will get the data over for group policies and any other data for Active Directory


Then you need to transfer all the active directory roles over to the new server


Setup DNS on the new server and have it sync with the other DNS server with Active Directory this should get all DNS records over to the new server


Go to the old server and make note of any DHCP Records that are static that you may have to recreate.


Next thing you will want to do is then run dc promo on your old domain controller so its n longer a domain Controller

Then unjoin it from the domain


Change the IP Address of the new server to what the old server was


Then on the 2008 R2 box you need to rename it to match the name of the old box


The steps to rename can be found here


Once the server is renamed you will want to setup DHCP on the new server. And then reboot all devices to get the information from the new server


I would highly advise doing this on a weekend so there isnt a big impact on the office


Omer, Network Administrator
Category: Networking
Satisfied Customers: 309
Experience: Been a Network Administrator for 5 years
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