Home > Windows server 2008 R2 > Migrating Active Directory Domain Controller from Windows Server 2003 to Windows Server 2008

Migrating Active Directory Domain Controller from Windows Server 2003 to Windows Server 2008

In my lab, I have the following:
MACHINE NAME DESCRIPTION SERVICE PACK LEVEL IP Address Architecture
OCI-DC A Windows Server 2003 StandardEdition with Service Pack 2.

This is the domain controller in my lab that I intend to migrate.

SP2 192.168.1.2 X64
OCI-DC2k8 A Windows Server 2008 Enterprise Edition. This is the machine I intend to setup as my new domain controller that will replaceOCI-DC SP1 192.168.1.3 X64

In a nutshell, we will perform the following:

1. Raise Domain Functional Level

2. Prepare your current Windows 2003 Active Directory for Windows

Server 2008 domain controllers.

3. Then, we will need to setup the server OCI-DC2K8 as an additional domain controller.

4. Transfer FSMO roles to the Windows Server 2008 Domain Controller

So lets starts :

1. Raise Domain Functional Level

We need to configure the domain to run in native mode, this is done by:

· On the Windows Server 2003 Domain Controller, run Active Directory User and

Computers snap-in by clicking on Start > Administrative Tools > Active Directory

User and Computers

· Right Click the Domain Name node, then click on Raise Domain Functional Level

clip_image001

If you have Windows 2000 Active Directory domain controllers then choose Windows 2000 native, if you do not have any Windows 2000

Active Directory domain controllers and all of your domain controllers are Windows Server 2003, then choose Windows Server 20003. I don’t have any Windows 2000 Active Directory domain controllers, so using the drop down list, I will select Windows Server 2003 and then click

the Raise button.

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· A warning message will be displayed, informing you that the changes

cannot be reversed. Click OK

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· A confirmation message will be displayed stating that the functional level was raised successfully. Click OK

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· Close Active Directory User and Computers snap-in

2. Prepare current Windows 2003 Active Directory

· Before you can have a 2008 server domain controller in your existing

2003 domain, we will need to prepare both the Forest Level and the Domain level, this is done by running the following commands on the Windows Server 2003 Domain Controller.

· Insert the Windows Server 2008 DVD inside the Windows Server 2003

DVD Drive

· Open Command Prompt, this is done by Clicking on Start > Run > type

CMD > click OK

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· Type D:\sources\adprep\adprep /forestprep (Where D: is the drive of

your Windows 2008 DVD)

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Click Enter

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Read the warning message, in my lab I don’t have any Windows 2000 Active Directory Domain Controllers, so I can simply skip this by typing C and then press Enter, else quite the Forest Preparation step and upgrade Windows 2000

Active Directory Domain Controller(s) to SP4, then run forestperp again.

clip_image008

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· After Forest preparation is completed successfully, run the Domain

preparation command

Inside CMD, type D:\sources\adprep\adprep /domainprep (Where D: is the drive of your Windows 2008 DVD)

If you have not Raised the Domain Functional Level from Windows 2000

Mixed to Windows 2000 Native or Windows 2003 as was illustrated earlier in step # 1, then you will receive the following error message after you run domainprep command:

clip_image010

If you did raise the domain functional level, adprep will successfully update

the domain-wide information

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· Although adprep /domainprep will update the domain-wide information, you can still run the last command adprep /domainprep

/gpprep

Inside CMD, type D:\sources\adprep\adprep /domainprep

/gpprep (Where D: is the drive of your Windows 2008 DVD)

clip_image012

As you can see, Domain-wide information has already been updated

when we ran the domainprep command, as no Group Policy Object

(GPO) updates needed, or GPO information has already been updated.

3. Setting up an Additional Domain Controller with Windows Server

2008

Now that Windows Server 2003 Active Directory has been prepared for Windows Server 2008 Domain Controllers, its time to Set Up an Additional Domain Controller With Windows Server 2008 and set it as a Global Catalog. If you already have an additional Windows Server

2008 domain controller and you want to check if it is a Global Catalog or not, then check my article Setting a Windows Server 2008 Domain

Controller as a Global Catalog

4. Transfer FSMO roles to the Windows Server 2008 Domain Controller

The last step in migrating a domain controller, is transferring the FSMO roles to the new domain controller. I have covered this part in a detailed step by step as spirit article.

With all the previous four major steps, you will successfully be able to

migrate your old Windows Server 2003 Domain controller to Windows

Server 2008.

Summary

Upgrading Windows Server 2003 domain controller to a Windows Server 2008 domain controller is an easy process if you follow the required steps carefully. The process consist of four major steps and they are : raising the domain level, preparing active directory for Windows Server 2008 domain controllers, setting a Windows Server 2008 as an additional global catalog domain controller and then transferring the FSMO Roles.

Now, you can simply demote the Windows Server 2003 domain controller, if you no longer need it.

Download as PDF

Migrating Active Directory Domain

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  1. December 6, 2011 at 5:38 pm

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  2. December 7, 2011 at 7:20 am

    Thanks Wendell Hunyadi

  3. December 19, 2011 at 2:08 pm

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  4. December 19, 2011 at 9:38 pm

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  5. mohamed yamani
    December 23, 2011 at 9:04 pm

    first thank you for this effort .
    2- i follow the steps using vmware workstation ,and when i insert the Windows Server 2008 DVD inside the Windows Server 2003 ,there is a message appear to me “this installation disc isn’t compatible with your version of windows ,……………etc” but i can access the Windows Server 2008 DVD
    3- after that i write the command :
    “C:\Documents and Settings\Administrator>D:\support\adprep\adprep /forestprep ”
    and this message was appeared to me “The image file D:\support\adprep\adprep.exe is valid, but is for a machine type other than the current machine”.
    i found the (adprep) tool inside the support directory not in source directory .
    So; what is your opinion ?

    • December 26, 2011 at 6:07 pm

      Dear Mohammad before you start there are some facts you must know it:

      In-place upgrading
      x64 installations of Windows Server 2003 (R2) and Windows Server 2008 can both be upgraded in-place to Windows Server 2008 R2, as long as you keep the following in mind:
      -* The Windows Server 2003 patch level should be at least Service Pack 2.
      -* Standard Edition can be upgraded to both Standard and Enterprise Edition.
      -* Enterprise Edition can be upgraded to Enterprise Edition only.
      -* Datacenter Edition can be upgraded to Datacenter Edition only.
      -* Foundation Edition (2008 only) can be upgraded to Standard Edition only.
      -* Server Core installations can only be upgraded to Server Core installations.

  6. January 4, 2012 at 11:02 pm

    This is just not onlly one of your posts I’ve learn, and you simply never stop to amaze me personally. Thank you, and i also await reading more.

  7. July 13, 2013 at 5:34 pm

    Wow, this article is pleasant, my sister is analyzing such things, therefore
    I am going to tell her.

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