Windows 2003 Server Upgrade questions

We have a 5 DC network that we are wanting to replace the PDC in with 2003 server. It's currently running 2000 server and it holds all the FSMO roles as far as I can tell.

We have new hardware to replace this machine and the plan is to transfer everything AD wise to another DC if needed, transfer the info on it to the new member 2003 server and then demote it and remove it from the domain and bring the other one in with the same name.

Here are my questions.

I have checked the box for one of the other DC's to be a GC but it won't update this in DNS. Under the _mcds dir in AD's DNS zone it only shows the current pdc under the GC folder. Is this normal or should the second GC show up in there? When I go into sites and services on any of the DC's the box is checked for it to be a GC.

Next, all of the FSMO roles are on the PDC at this point. Do I have to move those manually or will they automatically move when I demote it? Can I choose where they move to?

I also noticed that the replication for each DC is spread out between all the different servers. In other words each server replicates to two other servers, but not to the remaining two and each server has a different replication parteners with a few overlaps. Is this normal? Do I need to create manual connections to each of the others? The PDC is not replicating to the box I would like to serve as the PDC while I move the old box to the new one. I'm assuming it gets to it in a round about way through the other DC's that are replicating with the PDC.

Who is Participating?
I wear a lot of hats...

"The solutions and answers provided on Experts Exchange have been extremely helpful to me over the last few years. I wear a lot of hats - Developer, Database Administrator, Help Desk, etc., so I know a lot of things but not a lot about one thing. Experts Exchange gives me answers from people who do know a lot about one thing, in a easy to use platform." -Todd S.

Try rebooting the DC that you recently added as a GC.  Instead of rebooting, you can try restarting the Net Logon Service.  That may create the appropriate DNS record for it.

I would manually move the FSMO roles to an alternate server.  I'm not sure if it does this automatically when you demote, but I would do it manually and make sure everything is up and running with your current FSMO role carrying server offline.  Only then would I consider demoting.

We have a 2000 DC network and I noticed the same problem with the replication.  I manually created the additional replication partners to make sure the DC's were all replicating properly.  Not sure why it didn't do it automatically.

Experts Exchange Solution brought to you by

Your issues matter to us.

Facing a tech roadblock? Get the help and guidance you need from experienced professionals who care. Ask your question anytime, anywhere, with no hassle.

Start your 7-day free trial
BrianIT ManagerCommented:
FSMO roles DO NOT transfer automatically.  Take a look at this page to learn a little bit about FSMO roles and how to transfer and seize them.  It is based off of Server 2003 but the FSMO roles have not changed.

Let me know if it helps.

It's more than this solution.Get answers and train to solve all your tech problems - anytime, anywhere.Try it for free Edge Out The Competitionfor your dream job with proven skills and certifications.Get started today Stand Outas the employee with proven skills.Start learning today for free Move Your Career Forwardwith certification training in the latest technologies.Start your trial today
Windows 2000

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.