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Moving from 2003 Active Directory to 2008 R2 Active Directory (Mixed Mode for now.) RRS feed

  • General discussion

  • I am not sure if I am in the right Forum, but I have 5 Windows Server 2003 SP2 (32bit) DCs and all are GC servers as well.  Also, I have a Windows 2003 Server with Windows Exchange Server 2003 SP2 on it.

    1.  Can I take two of my DCs (1 having all of the FSMO roles on it) and put Server 2008 R2 on them?

    2.  Can I just simply upgrade my 2003 DCs to 2008 DCs (32 bit versions) in a R2 Active Directory Environment as long as it's in mixed mode?

    3.  How would this effect my Exchange 2003 Server? Or do I have to moved to Exchange 2010 in the W2K8 R2 AD environment?

    Any help would be appreciated.
    Friday, March 5, 2010 9:30 PM

All replies

  • Forgot one other thing, I have a Child Domain with two 2003 AD servers in it.  Do I need to run the ADPREP in that Domain as well?

    Friday, March 5, 2010 9:47 PM
  • Marcus,

    1. Server 2008 R2 is only 64bit, no 32 bit version; so if your current DCs are 2003 32bit you would have to re-build the machines (assuming they support 64bit), cannot upgrade from 32 to 64 bit OSs
    2.same as above, need to rebuild to 2008 R2 as it is only 64bit
    3. exchange would not be affected, see this support matrix for Exchange versions and AD versions, http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ee338574(EXCHG.80).aspx

    Friday, March 5, 2010 11:09 PM
  • Yes, you have to run ADPREP.  Since you are running on a 2003 32bit OS, you'll need to run ADPREP32.exe.

    I have a quick summary blog in regards to this topic:
    http://www.anitkb.com/2010/03/preparing-your-active-directory.html


    In regards to Exchange, you do not have to upgrade to the latest version.  However, you may want to post in the Exchange forum regarding any specifics before moving to an AD 2008 R2 domain.
    Visit my blog: anITKB.com, an IT Knowledge Base.
    Saturday, March 6, 2010 2:52 AM
  • Jorge,

    What I want to do is take two DCs and rebuild them with Windows Server 2008 R2 on them and introduce them into my Windows Server 2003 Active Directory.  All DCs with Windows Server 2003 are 32 bit versions.  The two that are being rebuilt will be 64 bit versions of 2008 R2.

    Do I put the Windows Server 2008 R2 CD into one of the remaining DCs with 2003 on it and run the 64Bit ADPREP version on it so that I can dcpromo my 2008 R2 servers up to DCs and make my network a Windows 2008 R2 Active Directory Mixed Mode Environment?

    I visited the URL you gave me and understand that there will be four commands with ADPREP that I will have to run.

    What I am trying to accomplish is to replace all DCs with Windows Server 2008 R2 so I will have an Windows Server 2008 R2 Active Directory.  I believe that I can still have the DCs with the Windows Server 2003 32 bit OSs in a Active Directory 2008 R2 environment.

    Thank you for your help.  It is very appreciated.
    Marcus Gray
    Monday, March 8, 2010 4:14 PM
  • Since your current 2003 Servers are 32 bit, you will need to run ADPREP32.exe for the forest and domain.  The other ADPREP commands depend on other details.  You can run those as well if they apply to you.

    Once your forest and domain is prep'd, you will be able to add the 2008 R2 DCs into the domain.  Once you remove the 2003 DCs, you will be able to raise the forest/domain functional levels.
    Visit my blog: anITKB.com, an IT Knowledge Base.
    Monday, March 8, 2010 6:05 PM
  • Ok. So I do this:

    1.  Run ADPREP32.exe on one of my 2003 Server DCs to prepare my forest and domain.
    2.  Replace two of my current DCs with Windows Server 2008 R2.
    3.  Promote those up to 2008 R2 DCs.
    4.  Transfer the roles over to one of the new 2008 servers.
    5.  Replace the remaining 2003 DCs with new 2008 R2 DCs.
    6.  Raise the function levels.

    Then, my Active Directory will be a true native 2008 R2 Active Directory environment?

    It sounds like my Child Domain Active Directory Administrator will only have to do the ADPREP for his domain so that he can introduce 2008 R2 DCs in that domain.

    Btw...Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions.
    Monday, March 8, 2010 6:23 PM
  • Yes to all of your points.  Note: On #1, run Forest prep on the DC holding the Schema Master role, and domain prep on the DC holding the Infrastructure Master role.

    You Child Admin can proceed once the forest has been prep'd.
    Visit my blog: anITKB.com, an IT Knowledge Base.
    Tuesday, March 9, 2010 12:27 AM
  • Jorge,

    I talked to my supervisor about the steps.  He said that he wanted to know if: 

    We can take the 2003 (32bit) DC that has all of the 5 roles on it and insert the Windows Server 2008 R2 disk in it and run the ADPREP commands to prep the forest and domain for a Windows Server 2008 R2 Domain even if the disk is a 64bit disk.

    Because of budget restraints, my supervisor wants to know if we can have an Active Directory environment that consists of two 2008 R2 DCs and four Windows Server 2008 DCs.  The 4 Windows Server 2008 DCs will have been the 2003 DCs that were demoted and upgraded to Windows 2008 Server, then promoted to Windows Server 2008 RODCs in the R2 Domain.

    Is this possible?

    Marcus Gray

    Tuesday, March 16, 2010 8:16 PM
  • Hello Marcus,

    The 2008 disk is not 32 or 64 bit.  It may have the OS files for a 64 bit intallation.  In any case, you should find the 32 bit version of ADPREP on that media.  The file you are looking for is ADPREP32.exe.  So yes, you would run this executable on the 32 bit DC holding the Schema Master role.

    Yes, you can have a mix of 2008 and 2008R2 DCs, but you will not be able to raise the functional level of the forest to R2 until all of the DCs are at the R2 level.  Some of the new AD 2008R2 features will NOT be unlocked until you raise the functional level.  But, yes, you can deploy the DCs in that configuration.
    Visit my blog: anITKB.com, an IT Knowledge Base.
    Wednesday, March 17, 2010 1:12 AM
  • Jorge,

    Ok.  Found the ADPREP32.exe on the Windows Server 2008 R2 CD to do all of the prep work.  Once I do that, I am going to replace two of my 2003 DCs with 2008 R2 DCs.  Then, I will take the rest of my 2003 (32-Bit) DCs and demote them.  While they are member servers, I will upgrade them to Windows Server 2008.  Then, I will promote them to Windows 2008 RODCs.

    Then, I will have 2 Windows Server 2008 (64-Bit) R2 DCs and 4 Windows Server 2008 (32-Bit)RODCs.

    Will this still be a Windows 2003 Native Mode Functional Level or a 2008 R2 Mixed Mode Functional Level?  
    Wednesday, March 17, 2010 6:23 PM
  • Can someone look at my reply above and answer my questions?  I am ready to start deploying 2008.

    Kind regards,

    Marcus

    Friday, March 19, 2010 6:36 PM
  • Hi Marcus,

    If you add Windows 2008 R2 DC into Windows 2003 domain, it will still keep the original FFL and DFL unless you raise them. ADPREP command will not change your domain functional level. It only extends the Schema Version.

    Regards,

    Wilson Jia


    This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers no rights. Please click "Mark as Answer" when you get the correct reply to your question.
    Monday, April 19, 2010 7:15 AM
  • Ok. So I do this:

    1.  Run ADPREP32.exe on one of my 2003 Server DCs to prepare my forest and domain.
    2.  Replace two of my current DCs with Windows Server 2008 R2.
    3.  Promote those up to 2008 R2 DCs.
    4.  Transfer the roles over to one of the new 2008 servers.
    5.  Replace the remaining 2003 DCs with new 2008 R2 DCs.
    6.  Raise the function levels.

    Then, my Active Directory will be a true native 2008 R2 Active Directory environment?

    It sounds like my Child Domain Active Directory Administrator will only have to do the ADPREP for his domain so that he can introduce 2008 R2 DCs in that domain.

    Btw...Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions.


    First, thanks for this list - it was exactly what I was looking for too.

    I have an additional step that I need some other brainpower on...

    I have 2 2003 DC's right now that once I transition to the new 2008R2 DC's, I'll be depromoting and removing. Problem is, they're also our DNS servers (AD integrated) and the task to change everything to point at the new DC's ip addresses would be monumental.

    So I'm wondering which of the 2 scenarios is a better way to proceed:

    1: After new 2008R2 DC's are in place, change the ip addresses on the current 2003 DC's.

    2: After old DC's are on their new ip addresses, change the new 2008R2 DC's to the original DC's.

    3: dcpromo down the old servers

    --OR--

    1: After new 2008R2 DC's are in place, dcpromo down the old servers and shut them down (no intention to reuse these servers with the current 2003 installation on them)

    2: Change the ips of the 2008R2 DC's to the old, now offlined, servers.

    Both methods accomplish the same thing, but I'm wondering if either one is a "better" way to do it, cause less downtime, etc. I can schedule a short outtage of the DNS servers without a problem.

    Friday, June 18, 2010 6:26 PM
  • Either of the choices are about the same.  Since its Friday, I'll go with:

    1: After new 2008R2 DC's are in place, dcpromo down the old servers and shut them down
    2: Change the ips of the 2008R2 DC's to the old, now offlined, servers.

    After you complete these two steps, verify that DNS records are all updated and correct.


    Visit: anITKB.com, an IT Knowledge Base.
    Friday, June 18, 2010 7:48 PM