Additional domain controller installation for new 2003 server failing - says to use adprep, but both machines are server 2003.

barnster123
barnster123 used Ask the Experts™
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I've run a small office network using a single Windows Server 2003 (Standard) for several years, it's called Fserver. This server has been performing all network tasks (file, domain controller, DNS, Exchange 2003, SQL etc). It's now creaking a bit.

Have bought a new server to take over several roles from the main server, these include: domain controller, exchange and SQL.

On the new machine, I've installed Server 2003 (64-bit, standard R2) and fully patched it, it's called Gserver. I've started to add roles but have come across a problem when trying to make it an additional domain controller for the existing domain. The idea is that Gserver will act as secondary domain controller for a while, then be upgraded to primary domain controller at a later date.

Running through the 'Active Directory Installation Wizard', it begins the process of configuring the Active Directory. However, it fails with the following error:

'The Active Directory Installation Wizard cannot continue because the forest is not prepared for installing Windows Server 2003. Use the Adprep command-line tool to prepare both the forest and the domain'. 'The version of the Active Directory schema of the source forest is not comaptible with the version of Active Directory on this computer'

Now, both machines are Windows server 2003 - so where does this problem come from?
When it says to run adprep.exe - on which machine, old or new?

Any help appreciated

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Most Valuable Expert 2018
Distinguished Expert 2018
Commented:
Since your new server is R2, you need to run an additional adprep /forestprep (on your current DC) in the folder \cmpnents\R2\adprep on the second R2 CD:
Extending Your Active Directory Schema for New Features in Windows Server 2003 R2
http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=5B73CF03-84DD-480F-98F9-526EC09E9BA8&displaylang=en
Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process Advisor
Most Valuable Expert 2013

Commented:
But another point - you should not be running Exchange on a DC.  Given the choice, I'd probably SKIP the second DC rather than run Exchange on it.  The one exception is if you used Small Business Server.
odba is bang on the money, its a fairly simple process,
Your new 2003 r2 server runs a new version of the AD Schema which the older version of 2003 does not have access too as it is not built into the older version,
so in a nutshell you run the above link odba has given you on your existing 2003 dc
ie put the R2 CD into your existing 2003 dc and follow the the above links instructions on your existing 2003 dc, this then brings your AD schema upto date so you can run the existing 2003 server DC alongside your soon to be promoted 2003 r2 dc.
Once you have done this you simply promote the new 2003 r2 server into a dc with no error.
Hope this gives you an quick overall picture of why and what you do this for.
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Author

Commented:
Many thanks. Not being especially knowledeable - is running adprep /forestprep on the exsting DC a risky business? Could it break things?
Any thing can be risky if you dont do your prep work.
But in fairness this is a fairly standard process.
I did a load of ours last year without any issues.
If your unsure why not grab a couple of PCs make one a dc with 2003 standard then build the other with 2003 r2, then run through the adprep on the standard,
obviously these 2 would not be on your domain the would be seperate just hooked upto each other via a switch etc,

Author

Commented:
leew - why should a DC server not run exchange?
Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process Advisor
Most Valuable Expert 2013

Commented:
Most Valuable Expert 2018
Distinguished Expert 2018

Commented:
Speaking of Exchange and DCs: Note that once you've installed Exchange on a machine, you can NOT promote/demote this machine anymore without breaking Exchange!
So you can install Exchange on a member server; but you can then *not* subsequently promote that machine to a DC.
You can install Exchange on a DC; but you can then *not* subsequently demote that machine to a member server.

Author

Commented:
hmmm, is it possible to install exchange on a secondary DC, then promote it to primary dc without breaking exchange?
Most Valuable Expert 2018
Distinguished Expert 2018

Commented:
Yes, you should still be able to move the roles, you just can't promote/demote a machine anymore once Exchange is installed.

Author

Commented:
Many thanks all.

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