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Best way to recover a corrupt sbs 2003 server

Posted on 2006-11-28
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Hi,

We have a corrupted sbs 2003 server. I have only a system state backup, but not of the whole \windows, \program files etc... But, I can access the files with ERD Commander. The problem began with a lsass.exe error which indicated a corrupt AD. We then tried running a SBS 2003 setup in repair mode, but then we got a bluescreen when the installation came to installing device drivers... We have also tried installing a fresh copy on a different partition and restored our system state to the original location, but it still tries to finish up our bluescreen of the repair installation. Seems like we are in a deadend now and really need some help what to do. We also use RAID1 and don't have any copy of the data besides the system state... Please advise ASAP! ;-)
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Question by:gheriksen
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by:Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy
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I'm sorry that you tried all of those things before determining the right way to resolve the lsass.exe error, which is somewhat of a common problem.  At this point, however, I would definitely suggest that you do a complete fresh install because your attempt to install on a separate partition most likely corrupted the Master Boot Record.  (You never want to install a second copy of SBS on the same machine).

What I'm concerned about is that you say you "don't have any copy of the data besides the system state".  The System State is not data, it's your Active Directory accounts and other security settings.  Your data would be the user's home folders (usually in C:\Users Shared Folders), your Exchange Stores (usually in C:\Program Files\Exchsrvr\MDBDATA, there are four files: priv1.edb, priv1.stm, pub1.edb and pub1.stm), and your SharePoint data files (usually in C:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL$SHAREPOINT\Data)

You need to make sure that you at least have those files to restore to your new install.  I'd suggest that you use a USB hard drive to copy them off to.

Jeff
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by:gheriksen
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OK,

But I'm abit confused... If I do a fresh install, do I only have to copy the program files +++ folders back to get all my installed software and restore my last system state to get things smoothly up and running? I have installed all my apps on C partition and all the data on D partition, like Exchange DB, Logs, SQL etc... Will this work???

-Glenn
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by:gheriksen
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Now I'm back to the lsass.exe problem. When I restart in Directory Service Mode it takes forever to log on. The Server hangs on the applying computer settings... Any thoughts or ideas on this???
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Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy earned 500 total points
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So, when you boot into Directory Services Restore Mode... then you DO eventually get logged in, correct?  You must then restore your SYSTEM STATE, that's what Directory Services Restore Mode is for.

There's actually another method to repair your installation... using your restored system state to the other partition... please read the steps outlined in this newsgroup post which will tell you how to copy the restored registry hive back to your original install.

http://groups-beta.google.com/group/microsoft.public.windows.server.sbs/browse_thread/thread/311579f9ee8258a7/cd4f4f6e45b83d06?lnk=gst

Jeff
TechSoEasy

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by:gheriksen
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I get logged in, but I can't run the NTbackup software??? Everything else seems to work like Windows Explorer, CMD, RegEdit, Services etc... How should I then be able to use System State Restore??? Seems like my AD is corrupt... I'm trying to recover the NTDS.dit file, but I keep getting errors... Well, the NTDSUTIL -> FILES -> INTEGRITY says it is corrupt. Any ideas here???

-Glenn
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by:gheriksen
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Fix the corrupt NTDS.dit file aswell, but not i still get the Server hang on "applying computer settings..." in Normal boot mode. Haven't been able to log in yet, so I really don't know if everything is OK, but no errors are displayed... Any ideas on this topic? Seems like there are a bunch of same symptons but no answers. BTW; It's not the APC software problem...

-Glenn
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by:Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy
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If it's hanging on applying computer settings, that's probably caused by Exchange and incorrect DNS settings.

If you'd boot into Safe Mode, you probably won't get the delay.  You can then disable all Exchange Services and reboot normally.  Then, post a complete IPCONFIG /ALL from the server and I'll take a look at your settings.

Jeff
TechSoEasy
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by:gheriksen
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That wasn't the problem... Well, never figured out what made the server hang, but was something on the lower stack since I had the exact same problem when starting the server in Directory Services Recovery Mode... Well, I ended up doing a repair, which worked fine after I had sorted out the corrupt Registry, AD +++. Finally there were some problems related to the NICs, but I just reinstalled the Drivers and a couple of settings then everything when fine! It has been a long struggle, but I fixed it! ;-) Thanx anyway...

-Glenn
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