Update and Backup challenges with SBS2000

Posted on 2006-04-27
Last Modified: 2010-04-19
I have a SBS2000 server that I'm replacing a new server running SBS2003.  I'm using the migration document from MS, and have also looked at the SwingMigration documents.  The challenge I'm running into with the SBS2000 box is that it doesn't have SP1 or Exchange SP3.

The box has some challenges in that it hangs on many of the task you ask it to do, such as opening Control Panel, etc...  I have tried to get it to run the updates, but it hangs.  

I can't even backup the box, as it won't recognize two different external hard drives that I've plugged into the USB port.  As I said this machine has issues.  Its a white box machine and its time to go.  I'd like to move ahead with the migration and would be interested in input on how to move ahead based on the limitations I mentioned.  

FYI, I'm not able to run ADPREP as it requires SP1 to be running on this box.  

Question by:jtcomstock
    LVL 8

    Expert Comment

    For updating your server, why not burn a copy of the updates to cd and update via that method.
    What is the specific hardware of the machine? i.e. are the existing hard disks a raid array? Or single disks?
    Is there a spare ide cable in the server that you could connect an internal hard drive to?

    Have you run chkdsk on the os partition? This may fix some of te problems if the drive is becoming corrupt.
    What type of media was used to install SBS 2000? You might be able to run repair on the base installation or install a second instance of the os on a different partition to the existing installation and know you have a stable os to backup your data to a usb drive.

    If your system is as fubarred as you say, migration is not necessarily the best way forward as you maybe moving a corrupt Active Directory to your new server. How many clients are there on the existing network? If there are not too many think of starting completely a freash, ie new server new domain.
    But if its required to migrate the existing settings, then use and use the tools provided to clean up AD as much as possible and get the most stable solution for you and your client.

    Hope some of this helps,

    David Houston
    LVL 1

    Expert Comment

    Personally, under this situation I would start from scratch depending on the number of users. If you do start from scratch, move all of the data to a temporary location (if possible), use Exmerge to export users mailboxes (don't forget to do the public folders if necessary using Export from Outlook). Then set up your new server and import all of the data to it. The nice thing about doing it this way is that you can retain the existing server name.

    If you do want to migrate, and you have the software available, I would install a copy of Windows 2003 Standard edition, add it to the domain, install Exchange 2003 Standard edition, move mailboxes, data and FSMO roles. Once the server is operational, I would remove active directory from the old server, remove it from the domain, and then install SBS2003 on the new server.

    I have actually only done this on the past using SBS2000 - SBS2000 will not let you install if there is an existing AD on the network (hence the installation of standard products initially). I think SBS2003 might allow you to do this as long as you remove your old server within 7 days (although I could be wrong). If it doesn't allow you to do this, then you will only be able to perform the above if you have the standard windows and exchange products available.

    Author Comment

    I'm thinking I'm going to go with a fresh install as well.  Its only 8 users, so not a huge deal to recreate.  Just want to be sure to grap the mailboxes to preserve the message, but will us Exmerge to export them.

    To answer the earlier question I did burn a CD, no luck.  I created a share drive on the old server and was able to post the updates there.  The server locked up when I tried to run the updates.  

    I do have the documents from SBS migration and was working through them as well as some documentation from Microsoft, but with the SBS2000 server acting up, not much to be done there.  

    By doing a new server, with the same name, I'm expecting that I should still do \\servername\ConnectClient to update the client machines to SBS2003.  

    I'll grap what I can from the old server and then move ahead with the new server.  If I need something from the old one, I can put it on its own network with my laptop and copy the files to an external harddrive.  The old server does not have a CD burner and won't recognize an external hard drive.  
    LVL 8

    Expert Comment

    Are there any errors in the event logs?
    I'm curious to know if there are any for Active Directory, if so loose your existing domain and start over.

    LVL 2

    Accepted Solution

    Definitely start again. With 8 users it would take you less time to rejoin them to the domain.

    A tip: (is it worth some points??)

    On the clients, log in as local admin, rename the default user profile to default user xxx
    rename the current user profile to default user
    join the new domain and long in as the current user, it will then load the new default user profile (which is the old profile).

    Make sure you clean out the temp directory, the temp internet files and if my docs is big, move it out and then back again. I got caught once when someone had a profile of 9gb.... they had a huge directory on their desktop. it worked, but took ages.

    The big advantage is that you can get the users settings copied across without having to wait, just move onto the next pc while it loads the profile.


    Author Comment

    Not sure I follow you on the user profile.  SBS allows me to select the current user profile, so wouldn't this pick up all the settings?


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