Move a server installation & settings to new hardware...


I have currently a Windows 2003 Standard configuration on an old system, which has been fairly stable and working. It runs as a domain controller with a lot of accounts, different policies, WINS, DHCP, email server, webserver, ftp-server, RIS etc. The accounts runs options like redirected folders and roaming desktops. But now I have new hardware that is much faster, and I want to reinstall the Windows 2003 Standard server onto the new hardware. That part is easy, but how do I transfer all the settings? I don't want to reconfigure everything, and I need to get the new server spinning fast since I have several clients that need the server to logon to. And the new server will have the same name and IP-address as the old server has now.

I have figured out how to backup the DHCP-settings since Microsoft was kind enough to add that option directly in the DHCP pages. But the rest? Like RIS, the entire AD tree etc? Is there an easy answer or do I need to run a lot of different backup software for this?

Please help!
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There is no easy quick way to solve this.  If the hardware is similar enough, you might be able to perform a full backup (with services stopped) on the original server.  Then try to restore the OS and data onto the new server hardware.  Because Windows if plug and play, this should work if the hardware is similar (same class RAID array, same number of CPU's, etc)

Otherwise, you need to perform some kind of migration.  You might consider adding the new systems as an additional domain controller in your domain.  By doing this, you will not impact your users or environment.  

Then, slowly, you can start moving over the services from the old server to the new one.  Start with the easy stuff, DHCP, WINS, etc...then move the harder mail.  In fact, you may consider leaving the old server online to provide redundancy in your is good to have two DHCP servers (with non-overlapping scopes), two DNS servers, two WINS, etc..  This will make your environment a little bit more redundant.

Here is what I typically do:

1. Bring the new server online and dcpromo it to a DC.
2. Transfer (not seize!) the FSMO roles from the old server to the new server.;en-us;324801
3. Install DHCP (assuming you are using DHCP) and use the Microsoft DHCP migration tool to migrate your DHCP server settings.

4. Install DNS and configure AD Integrated zones.  Replication will bring over all of your DNS settings for you.
I would give it a few hours for AD and DNS replication, just to be on the safe side.  I usually let them replicate over night and then check the event logs in the morning for any issues.
5. Make this DC a Global catalog server as you will be removing the old server.
6. Transfer all the data that you would like from the old server to the new server.
7. Once you are done and there are no issues and everything is running smooth, you can dcpromo down the old server and remove it from the network.

I have done a bunch of these and this is what works best for me.  :)

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Once you have a functioning Dc, then move over Exchange, RIS, FTP etc.  Good Luck :)
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mrpijeyAuthor Commented:
Yes, but how to move the RIS, WINS and the rest? I have no experience in these kind of things, so I don't know how and where to begin. I was wishing for some kind of smart backup/migration tool from Microsoft, but it seems there exists none. Moving the AD tree doesn't seem to be much of a hassle (I hope the policies goes along with the rest?), but I really don't want to reconfigure RIS, policies, DNS or any settings. I can install a new server, but won't there be any issues later when the secondary server becomes the primary AND change names and IP:addresses? Since i want the new server to have the same server name and IP address. And during installation and migration both of the servers can't have the same name and IP.

And in regards to the first answer, since this is a small personal network I really don't want to run TWO servers, I don't have the hardware, space or money for that. So I need to transfer ALL settings from the old to the new with minimal downtime. And without the need to reinvent the wheel again.
mrpijeyAuthor Commented:
...and I forgot to mention, the new server has COMPLETELY different hardware, the only common thing is the SCSI controller. Everything else like memory, CPU, harddrive, mainboard, chipset etc is different. So cloning tools like Ghost etc is out of the question. It would be preferrable, but I am not sure that would keep the server stable at all.
If you have AD integrated zones replication will take care of DNS for you (see my earlier post).  As far as RIS goes, I don't believe there is a tool for migrating that over, I think you will have to reinstall RIS. AD and group policy will replicate to the new server once you make it a DC. Do you even need WINS?  You could just change the it in the DHCP scope and enter any static assigned machines yourself. What email server, is it Exchange and if so what version?
mrpijeyAuthor Commented:
The emailserver isn't Exchange, it's Kerio Mailserver... however moving Kerio isn't a problem. The main issues are AD, policies, RIS and also user account settings such as folder redirections and roaming profiles. I am also storing all the data on a RAID5 SCSI array, but I will move the array once the new server has Windows installed. But what i need help with is a step-by-step procedure of what to do.

What I have done so far is installing Windows 2003 Server and put it into the current domain (it uses a fixed IP and different name (old server is called MIDGARD, new server MIDGARD2 (I hope i can change the name? if so, when?))). But what do do next?
mrpijeyAuthor Commented:
OK, i followed your instructions and also read additional ones (like for example ). Microsoft sure didn't think about user friendliness and ease of usage when they designed this moment... but it seems I managed to get it working... and if not then I'll guess I will have to do a full reinstall.

Thanks for your help!
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Windows Server 2003

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