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Active Directory - Collapsing multiple domains into one w/ file, print, etc.

Posted on 2004-08-04
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Last Modified: 2012-06-22
I have an environment with 3 separate domains, all in their own forests.  The administrative overhead has become quite a challenge.  I want to collapse all these domains into a single domain and use OU's to manage them.  I also have some file / print servers from these domains in the environment that will be put on one single SAN-based machine.  I am looking for advice on methods, third-party tools, etc. on how to go about this.  My requirements are the following:

1.  I do not want to touch all the desktops such as having to change their domains, etc.
2.  I want to automate as much of this as possible.
3.  File / Print is extremely important and don't want to have to redo all the folder permissions, etc.
4.  What are your opinions on the Quest tools and are they capable of performing the functions I need?

Thanks!
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Question by:jetskimd
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by:JamesDS
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jetskimd

There are migration tools out there from Quest/Aelita and BindView. Both offer full automation and the ability to do everything on your list of needs:

Join desktops to new domain without touching them, and rename them as well if necessary
Massive potential for automation
ACL tools that will fix the ACLS on the new domain structure for you without impact on user access during the migration
Quest tools will do all this as will the BV tools.

I have used the domain migration tools from both companies recently (I do this stuff for a living) and **personally speaking** the Quest tool seems to be more mature and offers better support while the BV tool seems to be cheaper and more flexible.

Cheers

JamesDS
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by:jetskimd
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Of course the plot thickens as it always does!  I will give you my scenario and let me know what you think of these tools still.

This is not a very big environment...maybe 250 users max.  I have 3 Active Directory domains that I want to take down to 1 with a new forest and just the one child domain, with just 2 domain controllers.  Each one of these 3 old domains has 2 controllers that also are handling roaming profiles and file/print duty.  I will be consolidating all the file/print services into one cluster to hand.  I have pretty free range to do what I want...except I can't put the end-users at their desktop into too much of a shock...as much as I'd like to blow the whole twisted environment away and rebuild from the ground-up.

Still think the Quest tools are up to the job?  Any in particular?  I was looking at the Products list on their website, and they have a migration suite and a migration manager.

Thanks...
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JamesDS earned 250 total points
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jetskimd

Yup, the quest tools can certainly do the job.

Call them and ask for a demo, with a pre-sales techie brought along as well. They will be able to explain exactly what the software can do and will be able to give you free time-limited licenses to do an evaluation - with full support on top.

The last time I used it it was called the Aelita Domain Migration Wizard, but Quest have just gone through a complete re-structure after buying Aelita and the product might be called something else now.

Cheers

JamesDS
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