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NT to AD DNS Strategy

Posted on 2006-07-08
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Last Modified: 2010-04-18
Hi,

I've got to migrate an NT4 domain to A/D (W2K3). At the moment we use WINS and have single DNS server with BIND as a caching DNS server and some static addresses.

For A/D I'm going to need a dynamic DNS server. I could get BIND to do this, but it seems to me to be simpler to just use the Windows DNS server.

My question is: how should I migrate to this? Do I need to set it up on the PDC prior to upgrading to Win2003? Surely I need everyone pointing to the same DNS server prior to Active Directory?

It's a small network, 1 PDC, 1 BDC, 200 members (NT, 2000 and XP).

Thanks for any advice.

Leon...

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Question by:leonst
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Expert Comment

by:mass2612
ID: 17067316
Hi,

Migrating Windows NT Server 4.0 Domains to Windows Server 2003 Active Directory
http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserver2003/evaluation/whyupgrade/nt4/nt4domtoad.mspx

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by:leonst
ID: 17067462
Thanks mass2612. I've got this document and this is what gave rise to my question, which is about specifically how to migrate from a static BIND DNS system to a dynamic Windows DNS system.

Surely NT4's DNS server doesn't support dynamic updates? And I need to have a dynamic DNS server in place prior to the upgrade or during the upgrade. But surely all clients will need to point to this prior to upgrading or they won't be able to see the new PDC? Or will they all continue to find domain controllers using WINS until I take the NT BDCs offline?
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isd503 earned 375 total points
ID: 17067712
I don't think you have to worry about this.  I am assuming the new DNS server will also be an AD DC, maybe the PDC?  As you point clients to the new DNS server and join them to the AD domain, they should automatically create entries.  You may have to re-create some static entries, but most of them should be dynamically created during the migration process.

In my environment, I have two Windows Server 2003 SP-1 ADC's.  One is the PDC Emulator, Infrastructure Master and Domain Naming Master, while the other is the RID and Schema Master.  Both are Global Catalog servers for Exchange 2003 SP-2.

Both servers are DNS and WINS servers.  External DNS is also hosted on our ISP PDNS and SDNS servers.

This works very well in my environment, and we recently migrated from NT 4.0 and Exchange 5.5.

Just make sure you create a file containing all of the current BIND DNS entries, so you'll have something to refer back to if you experience a problem.  Upgrade your clients to XP and 2000 and Exchange from 5.5 to 2003 ASAP and then upgrade your domain mode from Windows Server 2003 interim (Windows NT 4.0 and Windows Server 2003 DC's) to Windows Server 2003 (Windows Server 2003 DC's only) and your Exchange mode from mixed to native.

It is a lot of work to accomplish all of this and it takes a lot of time.  It took me 9 months to complete this migration.
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by:leonst
ID: 17067882
Thanks isd503, I think that's pretty much answered my question!
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