Rebuild Active Directory advice- have new servers
Posted on 2006-05-17
the decision has been made to rebuild my Active Directory at one of my sites, and I need some advice on the steps to take. Here's my current setup:
One 2K3 server running Exchange 2k3, on an older Dell PowerEdge tower. It holds the A.D. and it's primary functions are Exchange, and storing data that is sync'd across two separate T1 VPN's (managed by Verizon/MCI). The two remote sites just have a pc that uses Outlook, and gets data sync'd between them, using the server as the repository. I just bought three new Dell servers- 2 2850's, 1 1850. I think I'll use the 1850 for storage/backups/sync, and a 2850 as the DC running Exchange, and the extra one as a hot spare. I plan to image the 2850 everynight (Symantec LiveState) in case it goes down. Down time is not negotiable!! Which leads me to my question:
What's the best way to get this done? Mail cannot be down for more than a couple hours during ONE day! (probably Saturday or Sunday) I believe I have to recreate the Exchange database-? There's 4 user accounts that are moderately used, a few others used only as aliases for subscriptions etc. that are forwarded to the primary mail account. Total mailbox size is about 1 Gig. I've never done an Exchange rebuild so don't know what that entails.
I have about a month to get this done, so I'm trying to lay out all the steps in advance so I know what kind of downtime is realistic. Thanks in advance for hints or tips! And sorry if I left out any important details.