moving roles from a SBS server to a second server

Posted on 2006-05-01
Last Modified: 2010-04-19
I have a SBS 2003 network running Exchg, ISA, SQL, w/SAP  DHCP. IIS. It is the Primary DC....
I have a second DC "windows 2003 server standard"   named DC2.
I want to setup #2 for DHCP & Mail, leaving it as a DC while I take down and rebuild/reinstall  the SBS 2003 server " DC1 " and rejoin it to the network as the primary DC.
What would be the best way for one/me to go about this task, If it can be done at all. Currently the second DC is not doing anymore that FRS for DNS

I did not set this server up and it has been nothing but a Pain, I may be making more of a pain out of it by tring to do what I have in mind .

Long story short: two 2003  servers one SBS, one standard whats the best way to set them up ?
seeing that this is an SBS question they are all worth 500 points to me

Thank You
Question by:Mickyrat
    LVL 7

    Expert Comment

    License wise,  Exchange must stay on the SBS.  I think a second domain server gives mostly not much added value.  Only in specific situations like a second location or terminal services.
    LVL 8

    Assisted Solution

    As Zadkin said, you are not allowed to move core parts of SBS to other servers, such as Exchange.
    What you could do is try a Swing Migration by Jeff Middleton, this method requires the minimal amount of downtime for your primary server, his website is

    What this does for you is your existing sbs server if left in place until your temporary server is ready, your mail goes down for only a very short period of time.

    Under existing licensing for SBS2003 networks you can only add a second server in as a file and print server, you can move some of the basic features such as DNS or DHCP to the second server, but the general thoughts in the community would be to leave the SBS server with the default features and add the DNS to the other server to give some fault tolerence there.

    Other thoughts would be that taking down your existing sbs server and then trying to rejoin it to an existing domain can be problematic, TechSoEasy has posted some good links to useful KBs that help with this, but the cleaner method is still the Swing Migration method.

    Hope this helps,

    LVL 74

    Accepted Solution

    I would say that absolutely the ONLY way to do what you want is with Swing Migration.  Because if you were to put a standard Exchange Server on your other Server 2003, you would be required to have regular Exchange CALs as well as regular Core CALs and SQL CALs for each user.  The SBS CALs would not be valid.

    So, what you would essentialy be doing is installing a temporary SBS.  This does not necessarily have to be on your DC2, you could use any PC for it if you don't want to have to rebuild the DC2 afterwards (or you could actually put Virtual Server 2005 on DC2 and install the SBS into a Virtual instance... which would not be a bad idea from a backup and restore perspective... VS2005 is now free:

    From a licensing perspective, you would be fine because this would only be a temporary SBS that would not extend beyond the 180 day evaluation period.  If your original SBS was an OEM version, you may not be able to use that media for your temporary SBS...  If you are able to technically install it, it would violate the license... although I don't really see a problem with using that media if you can, especially since you cannot currently order an evaluation version because of the release of SBS R2 in a month or so.

    So now to really answer your question of are you making this more of a pain by reinstalling and rebuilding your SBS?  Probably not if it was never installed and configured properly to begin with.  Using the Swing Migration method will provide you with complete guidance and wrap-around documentation that is invaluable.  You may also want to check out Harry Brelsford's "Small Business Server 2003 Best Practices" book ( or his "Advanced Best Practices" ( so that you have a good resource to follow when reinstalling.  After over 50 SBS installs in the past couple of years, the Best Practices book is still by my side at each one.

    Good Luck!



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