This article discusses using virtualization as a simple and low-risk backup method for migrating Windows SBS. A virtualized migration can be done in four stages.
In Stage 2, you go through the normal migration process migrating the virtualized SBS and leaving the physical SBS untouched.
In Stage 3, after reaching the point where your SBS2003 is nearly complete, you can repurpose your physical SBS2003 server for line of business (LOB) applications or for other purposes. Repurposing the physical SBS2003 server involves reformatting the system partition on the physical server. Because you created a backup of the pre-migrated SBS2003 in Stage 1, you will be able to load this image as a virtual machine any time you need to access the pre-migration SBS2003 server.
In Stage 4, you complete the migration. SBS2008 is running on a new server, LOB applications are running on the old server, and the virtual host server is freed up and ready for a new assignment.
Made VHD from live SBS2003, and created virtual SBS2003 on another PC using Virtual PC. It works fine until login, when attempted to login to the virutal SBS2003, it tries to validate the OS and it fails, kicking me out back to login screen. I'm assuming this is due to the hardware change? Is there a way to fix this?
I tried this before reading the article. I'm still in process, however. I used Acronis Backup and Recover with Universal Restore to make an image of the system drive. Then you can convert to Virtual PC image fromt he application itself. The thing that's different for me is I took the image out of the office and did all but last few steps of migration in a different location. I'm going to be taking the new 2008 server back without finishing Folder Redirection policy implementation, Exchange 2003 uninstall, and 2003 DC demotion. I completely spaced that those last 2 steps have to be done with clients connected :/ I hope the live physical 2003 SBS can see and sync with AD in the 2008 SBS once I hook them up. I had virtual server for 2003 configured with the same IP, as the physical machine. Keeping fingers crossed. Once done, I will use ExMerge to take out the latest messages (from the time between image creation and today) and import them through PowerShell into 2008. However, I will need to find a 32-bit client with Outlook on it to run the script *facepalm* Thanks, Microsoft.
...well "until" policies aren't changed ...lol
you have to be careful because SBS 2003 is not supported on virtual environments as you can verify with the virtualization support wizard: windowsservercatalog.com/svvp.aspx
This means that any issue that may arise will not be supported by CTS unless support policy aren't changed.
Given the rise of people running servers virtually, I'm surprised the article doesn't mention the possibilities of the final destination being a *virtual* SBS 2008 server (the intention in our company).
Does anyone know the implications of this? We were hoping to have one Hyper-V server with the SBS 2003 and SBS 2008 servers running on it. Presumably the 'migration' method mentioned is a swing migration?
Great concept. We have used a virtualized Exchange environment since moving our Exchange 5.5 to a VM, then taking that VM, a copy of AD and a new VM for Windows 2003 / Exchange 2003 Enterprise Edition on a dedicated workstation running VMware Workstaiton, and we went through the migration until we got it right. The production migration, after the full backup was superb.
Regarding migrations (P2V) -- please go the cold migration path. If you are using vmware p2v (now called Vmware Enterprise Converter unless you have the earlier Standalone Converter licenses), you download two images and you can make a bootable ISO that your physical server can boot from during a maintenance window on your Exchange server. Once you tell the converter where to place the converted 'virtual disks', you will be able to walk away (Yes, I monitored it for a few trials, but it was four hours for us over a 100MB WAN connection to new corp HQ). Previous attempts to use P2V as a hot backup or to use the Windows NTBACKUP mechanisms doesn't give you the same 100% solid result the P2V off the bootable ISO does.
We will be migration SBS 2003 to SBS 2008 and the first software on the new server will be VMware. The only corporate email server (after we decommission SBS 2003) will be Windows SBS 2008 and additional Server 2008 Standard licenses. Microsoft Applications on Virtual Windows Operating Systems on VMware is great for small offices with Open Licenses and large enterprises with EA agreements.
i used vmware p2v and it worked a treat, currently in the process of doing the migration this week, no issues with AD at all (so far). Have had general issues however based on source server. Mainly annoying more than showstopper stuff.. however i wouldn't be too happy to do this process in a live production environment. Fair chance of making a rod to beat your own back with. The server goes into customer site this saturday.
I had the same situation a week ago (upgrade from SBS2003 to SBS2008 on same hardware), the only difference was that i was using Citrix XenConvert & Xen Server. However, when i booted virtualized SBS2003 i could not log in due to the fact that XenConvert cannot virtualize open files, services and so on... It then corrupted AD and had to do it "old fashioned way", from existing SBS2003 to temporary SBS2003 on another server and then from temporary server back to SBS2008 on primary server.
My question is, can disk2vhd tool succesfully convert AD and other running services, so that they boot with no problems in virtualized environment. If so, i wish i had this info one week ago. It would save me 20 hours of mailbox moving :(
one other issue that has popped up with this is that of activation if your using oem installs