Windows 2000 Server CALs, and adding a Windows Server 2003. Mixed 2000/2003 domain.

Discussion in 'Windows Server' started by Ed van Balen, Jun 3, 2005.

  1. Ed van Balen

    Ed van Balen Guest


    We are a small company, and currently have a Windows 2000 AD domain with one
    Windows 2000 Server as DC and 30 Windows 2000 client PC's. We are currently
    running in "Per server" mode.
    We don't have Exchange yet.

    Now we want to add a second server with Windows Server 2003, both running as
    an Exchange Server 2003 and as a backup DC. We want to keep the existing
    server as Windows 2000 Server.
    It is my understanding that it is best to change to "Per Seat" (Win 2000) or
    "Per User" (Win 2003) mode now.
    And I understand that we need extra CALs for the Exchange server.

    But what about the Windows Server CALs? Can we still use the Win 2000 CALs
    in this configuration?
    Is one of the servers acting as "Licensing server", and if so, can we choose
    which one?
    Will we be running in "Per Seat" (Win 2000) or "Per User" (Win 2003) mode?
    I have searched the MS website, but cannot find anything about a mixed
    Windows Server 2000/2003 domain.

    Does anybody know more about this?

    Ed van Balen, Jun 3, 2005
    1. Advertisements

  2. Ed van Balen

    Henrik Guest

    This is not hard facts, since as you so correctly stated yourself, MS
    licensing is a bit confusing.

    1. Windows Server 2003 Server:
    In order to add a Windows 2003 Server as another DC to your Windows 2000
    domain, you must run ADPrep tool prior to elevating the Windows Server 2003
    machine to the role of a DC. See more at:
    I'm not 100% sure of this, but apart from extending the domain schema with
    windows server 2003 objects, I believe that this also means that the domain
    is now a Windows Server 2003 domain, with in your case, one Windows Server
    2003 machine, and another Windows 2000 Server machine.

    2. Licensing, general:
    As far as licensing goes, MS has a simple rule:
    If the user or device authenticates against a Windows 2003 server (or a
    domain, if in per seat mode, I believe), you need Windows Server 2003
    licenses, as follows from point 1 above. In fact you CAN select the
    licensing server, but selecting the Windows 2000 server as a licensing
    server does not help, I'm afraid. So you will in all probalility need new
    Windows 2003 licenses.The only good news in this is that these new 2003
    licenses are downlevel compatible in that these licenses also handle access
    to older operating systems like Windows 2000.

    3. Licensing modes:
    Exchange Server does not support Per Server licensing mode. You MUST use per
    seat for Exchange

    4. Mixed mode:
    Exchange will function in a Mixed 2000/2003 domain.
    It will however function "better" in a native domain, since the native 2003
    schema supports more roles and features than the 2000 schema does.
    ADPrep imports the Windows 2003 schema, but it is not used until you raise
    the domain to the functional level of Windows Server 2003.

    A search tip to find out about mixed and native mode is to search google or
    some other site for
    "Domain Functional Level" and/or "Forrest Functional Level"

    Another tip is that while MS has a policy of charging for support or help
    with their server products, when one calls Microsoft support, they have a
    separate phone choice of "Do you have questions about Microsoft licensing?"
    or some such, which indicates that they WILL answers questions, and probably
    for free. And they SHOULD be the ones to know, one could hope.

    Hope that helps.

    // Henrik
    Henrik, Jun 3, 2005
    1. Advertisements

  3. Ed van Balen

    Ed van Balen Guest

    Thanks Henrik, for your very informative answer.
    An option for us might be to downgrade the new server to Windows 2000
    In that case we will still have a native Win 2000 domain, and can keep
    using the Win 2000 CALs. We are allowed to change from "Per server" to
    "Per seat" mode once.
    The disadvantage of this might be that Exchange 2003 is reported to be
    performing less well on a Windows 2000 Server.

    But we will contact Microsoft, to be sure about the options. If I find out
    anything new, I will let it know in this group.

    Thanks again,
    Ed van Balen, Jun 5, 2005
    1. Advertisements

Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments (here). After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.