Migrating from 2003 to 2008 (R2)

Migrating from 2003 to 2008 (R2)

December 1st, 2010 // 9:16 pm @

For one of my small local clients, we assisted them recently with migrating the domain from 2003 to 2008 R2.  It was a move from 32 bit 2003 to 64 bit 2008 R2.  This is for 2 physical boxes (one on 2003 and one of 2008 R2) since we didn’t want to have any down time and plus the 2003 server’s physical equipment was out of warranty.  There were some gotchas that we ran across, but based on some Google searches we were able to get through the issues.  We tested this on the Paraguin domain first as a trial run and of course we do this because we have less valuable stuff running and our production network is like a test network since anything goes.

So here’s some links that we utilized and piece-meal together to perform what we needed to do:

Since each of these documents somewhat supplement each other we’ll only discuss the high level points here:

  1. ADPrep – This is when you take the 2008 R2 install disc and put it into the 2003 server.  Then you run the series of ADPrep commands.
    1. If your 2003 server is 32 bit run ADPrep32.exe (obviously 32 means for 32 bit)
    2. If your 2003 server is 64 bit run ADPrep.exe
  2. Make sure your DNS is working and AD integrated
    1. So review the Microsoft KB article ensuring that your DNS is AD integrated.  It’ll save you a lot of pain later on if it’s AD Integrated since you won’t actually have to do much to configure your DNS.
  3. Setup the 2008 R2 server
    1. Join the 2008 R2 server to the domain
    2. Setup the DNS on the 2008 R2 server
    3. At this point, we left the server alone for like 1 day while we were working on other things and let the DNS propagate through the AD Integrated feature
  4. Verify the DNS works
    1. So if DNS works and it’s replicated, then if you desire you can start migrating DHCP, static IPs to the new 2008 R2 server.
  5. DCPromo the 2008 R2 Server
    1. At this point, we also let the server sit to ensure they are replicating
    2. Verify through the Event Viewer that replication is working properly
    3. Note: You may have to raise the forest / domain level functionality to at least 2000 or 2003 and not mixed mode
  6. Now transfer the FSMO roles
    1. Perform the transfers by following the instructions from the links above (no point in re-inventing the wheel)
  7. At your own discretion DCPromo the 2003 server and remove it from the environment
    1. Highly recommend performing a shutdown of the 2003 server over the weekend or down time to verify that logins are working to the 2008 R2 server
    2. Once verified that DNS and logins continue to work, then kill the 2003 server

So there you go, there are the basic high level steps that we did to transfer from 2003 to a 2008 R2 server.  Obviously it’ll be more complex to deal with additional servers that are in the environment, but to do one server for a small environment, it was pretty simple.


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