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What is the best way to re-deploy SBS?

Hello everyone,

I have a very sick SBS 2003 server at a client's office.  It has been sick since one of the two drives in the mirror went down.  The other one was corrupted, and they have all kinds of problems, I/O failure and disk errors still come up on the "good" drive.

I have two brand new drives to rebuild this server back from the ground up.  I have a new workstation that is robust enough to serve as a temp server at my disposal should this be an option.  I'd like to do a clean install on a new array with the new drives.  The problem is, I can't find a relatively easy way to rebuild this server and put it back in place without either:
1.  Doing 2 ADMT migrations- 1 to the temp, and 1 to the repaired original
or
2.  Screwing up all the profiles for everyone if I just start over from scratch
or
3.  Using the existing data

The ideal solution to this question would be a non-risky, and something not super complex and time consuming.  I don't like spending weekends alone with computers.

Is there a way to use a backup of AD on each replacement server?  What if some of the AD stuff is potentially corrupt.  This may defeat the whole purpose of moving it to a new server?

Thanks in advance for your help!
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dempsedm
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dempsedm
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1 Solution
 
cvvoodCommented:
couple of questions:
How big is the client ? Users, computers, printers, shares
Backing up the data at any point is always A+
SBS is a real pain to move from cleanly,  MS sells a transition package, but I Gave it back to a client and said good luck.
If your not to big, and have a friend who likes computers, you could have it all recreated on a VLAN, and just cut over the workstations and other ethernet tied appliances during a weekend blitz.
Recreating the profiles are the "Easier" points, as you would just log into the new domain under the new user, and copy the essentials,  My docs, Desktop, Outlook PST's (if not exchange) from the old profile located locally.  You could get fancy and write a batch file... If exchange is involved there are atleast unified ways to "backup" and reload that data.
I can get into more depth, as ive done this 20 or so times for clients, would just need to know a few more particulars on services currently runningn on the SBS machine.
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dempsedmAuthor Commented:
15-20ish
Good Backups, they are on my Pro grade off-site backup service

Really all the SBS is being used for is as a file server, domain controller, and a couple of printers.  I would be weary of just copying the essentials, desktop, pst, mydocs, etc.  Mostly because these are very unsophisticated users, and even the smallest amount of things moving around or changing is cause for confusion.  I'd like to try to do it as clean and seamless to the end users as possible.

Does this help?
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plimpiasCommented:
I would discourage backup and restore. You want a clean install. Ive done the ADMT migration twice one to temp and another to the original server after it was reformattd in the past and it worked without problem. Everything ran flawless.

I would vote for #1. It is a CLEAN install of SBS. users keep the same settings and shouldn't know the difference.

I did one migration one weekend and the other the next. It was a network with 40 workstations.

I would not risk any backup & restore or repair. Just start fresh and do the migration.
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dempsedmAuthor Commented:
I haven't found any documentation on ADMT for sbs 2003 to sbs 2003.  Is it the same as 2000 -> 2003, or should I look for a new document?  

I did the original migration from a regular 2000 domain to sbs 2003.  It worked ok once I figured out what I was doing.  I think it is much easier since we do not have Exchange.

Wish me luck, I think I will try the ADMT to the temp computer, so long as I can make the network drivers, etc. work, then I will take my time working on the old server to make sure it is ready for action before I stick it back in.
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plimpiasCommented:
This guide also works with windows2003/SBS to SBS 2003 Migration

http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=fa187d1e-8218-4501-9729-222bd8ebb64c&DisplayLang=en


I used the techniqies i did with 2K to 2k3 migration.

Just migrate users then groups, then computers. I always turn antivirus off to be safe.

Make sure you migrate to the SBS computer and SBS USER OU.
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dempsedmAuthor Commented:
Cool, this is the same one that I used before for 2k to 2k3.
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plimpiasCommented:
Yep It works great. I've done it a few times in order to replace SBS servers with failing RAID containers and old hardware. Ive also migrated to a temp domain (tempserver), then rebuild the original servera nd migrated back using ADMT.
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dempsedmAuthor Commented:
That's exactly what I'm doing right now.  I have about 31 more tasks to go before I'm migrated to the temp one.  Hooray weekend!
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dempsedmAuthor Commented:
P.S. Now I'm going to see if I can get my money back from sbsmigration.com.  
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dempsedmAuthor Commented:
Hmmm, what happens to a laptop that someone took home with them that is on the network being migrated?  I suppose I could do it manually on Monday, and maybe use the USMT for the profile?
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plimpiasCommented:
Just make sure you do it first thing Monday morning if you can't get it over the weekend.

You can get everything else migrated and then do the last computer on Monday.

Or like you said do it manually using the USMT
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plimpiasCommented:
Remember to use a differnet server name and netbios domain name
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dempsedmAuthor Commented:
I found out that there are more than just one or two laptops home.  One more disappeared last night.  Now I might have 5 that I have to do manually?  This will suck.  I wonder how people got the idea that "we will be working on your computers this weekend" means you should take them home...
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plimpiasCommented:
lol

How is everything else going?
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dempsedmAuthor Commented:
lots of admt errors, but I think this might be normal.  Last time I did this, I don't think I ever got "completed successfully".  It always says "completed with errors" or "completed with warnings".  Is this normal?  

Big question for you guys.  Can I complete the steps up until retiring the old server, i.e. leave the old server and domain online, with the dns forwarders set up and have people up and running on the new domain?  This would let me ADMT the missing laptops tomorrow, then I could decomisson the broken server once I move them over.

If not, is there an easier way to transfer a profile besides having to do the full usmt wizard and store huge gb of data somewhere, etc.  I almost want to say there was some tool to re-associate a profile to an account or something.  Maybe I'm just crazy, or maybe that was to recover a profile that was missing or something.

Happy Sunday,

d
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plimpiasCommented:
Can I complete the steps up until retiring the old server, i.e. leave the old server and domain online, with the dns forwarders set up and have people up and running on the new domain?  This would let me ADMT the missing laptops tomorrow, then I could decomisson the broken server once I move them over

Yeah if you your old server is up and going to be online it won't be a problem for a short term solution.

You can reassociate a profiel with another by going to regedit

HLM/Softwre/microsoft. windows nt/profile list

You will have to look at the SID that you want to map and put in the path.
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dempsedmAuthor Commented:
Hmmm, couldn't find that in there.  I may just leave old server up and do admt on those computer accounts when they come in.
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plimpiasCommented:
Sry i was on a computer that was non windows earlier.

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\ProfileList
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dempsedmAuthor Commented:
Now that we are successfully on the temp server...  Is it possible to use ghost or something to re-deploy the original server now that we aren't working with corrupt data?  I've never really worked with ghost, and certainly not with doing the switch-a-roo on a domain controller.  Damn, now I wish I didn't name the domain yourcompoanytemp and servertemp or whatever.
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plimpiasCommented:
I do not recommend using Gshot. You wil run into more short term and long term prolems and you may regret it for a very very long time.
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