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Upgrade Server 2003

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we have Windows server 2003 as a domain controller.
Now we want to install Windows 2008 on this computer an use it as domain
Can we run installation over installed 2003 server to keep setings and domain.
I am not suhe wether is it good idea.
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Meinolf Weber [MVP-DS]
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Hello JN,

Yes, you can do it. But personal i am against inplace upgrades to new OS
versions. Better choose an additional server and start fresh.

For the latter see here:

- Do you use any kind of Exchange in the 2003 domain? If yes, which one?

- On the old server open DNS management console and check that you are running
Active directory integrated zone (easier for replication, if you have more
then one DNS server)

- run replmon from the run line or repadmin /showrepl(only if more then one
DC exist), dcdiag and netdiag from the command prompt on the old machine
to check for errors, if you have some post the complete output from the command
here or solve them first. For this tools you have to install the support\tools\suptools.msi
from the 2003 installation disk.

- run adprep /forestprep and adprep /domainprep and adprep /rodcprep from
the 2008 installation disk against the 2003 schema master(forestprep) / infrastructure
master(domainprep/rodcprep), with an account that is member of the Schema/Enterprise/Domain
admins, to upgrade the schema to the new version (44) or 2008 R2 (47)

- you can check the schema version with "schupgr" or "dsquery * cn=schema,cn=configuration,dc=domainname,dc=local
-scope base -attr objectVersion" without the quotes in a command prompt

- Install the new machine as a member server in your existing domain

- configure a fixed ip and set the preferred DNS server to the old DNS server
only, think about disabling IPv6 if you are not using it, some known problems
exist with it. Follow (
to disable it

- run dcpromo and follow the wizard to add the 2008 server to an existing
domain, make it also Global catalog and DNS server.

- for DNS give the server time for replication, at least 15 minutes. Because
you use Active directory integrated zones it will automatically replicate
the zones to the new server. Open DNS management console to check that they

- if the new machine is domain controller and DNS server run again replmon,
dcdiag and netdiag (copy the netdiag from the 2003 to 2008, will work) on
both domain controllers

- Transfer, NOT seize the 5 FSMO roles to the new Domain controller (
applies also for 2008), FSMO should always be on the newest OS DC

- after transfer of the PDCEmulator role, configure the NEW PDCEmulator to
an external timesource and reconfigure the old PDCEmulator to use the domainhierarchie
now. Therefore run on the NEW "w32tm /config /manualpeerlist:PEERS /syncfromflags:manual
/reliable:yes /update" where PEERS will be filled with the ip address or
server( and on the OLD one run "w32tm /config /syncfromflags:domhier
/reliable:no /update" and stop/start the time service on the old one. All
commands run in an elevated command prompt without the quotes.

- you can see in the event viewer (Directory service) that the roles are
transferred, also give it some time

- reconfigure the DNS configuration on your NIC of the 2008 server, preferred
DNS itself, secondary the old one

- if you use DHCP do not forget to reconfigure the scope settings to point
to the new installed DNS server

- if needed export and import of DHCP database for 2008 choose "netshell
dhcp backup" and "netshell dhcp restore" command (

Demoting the old DC (keep in mind that it is highly recommended to have 2
DC/DNS/GC per domain)

- reconfigure your clients/servers that they not longer point to the old
DC/DNS server on the NIC

- to be sure that everything runs fine, disconnect the old DC from the network
and check with clients and servers the connectivity, logon and also with
one client a restart to see that everything is ok

- then run dcpromo to demote the old DC, if it works fine the machine will
move from the DC's OU to the computers container, where you can delete it
by hand. Can be that you got an error during demoting at the beginning, then
uncheck the Global catalog on that DC and try again

- check the DNS management console, that all entries from the machine are
disappeared or delete them by hand if the machine is off the network for ever

- also you have to start AD sites and services and delete the old servername
under the site, this will not be done during demotion

Best regards

Meinolf Weber
Disclaimer: This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers
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> Hi
> we have Windows server 2003 as a domain controller.
> Now we want to install Windows 2008 on this computer an use it as
> domain
> controller.
> Can we run installation over installed 2003 server to keep setings and
> domain.
> I am not suhe wether is it good idea.
> JN

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