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2003 Domain rename with Exchange 2003, 2007 and Server 2008 DC's

Posted on 2008-10-30
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Last Modified: 2012-05-05
Hello,

Our client need to rename their domain.  We are in the middle of moving them from a 2003 domain with exchange 2003 to a 2008 domain with exchange 2007.  We didn't find out the wanted to rename the domain until we built 2 new DC's a new exchagne, 4 citrix servers, etc... with the old domain name.

So instead of rebuilding the 2008 domain we are planning to use the tools to rename a 2003 domain before we move the roles to the 2008 server and down the 2003 domain.

Any opinions about this based on experience with domain rename would be helpful.

Thanks,
Bonnie
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Question by:Bonnie_K
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dfxdeimos earned 250 total points
ID: 22844629
Here is a good read for you:

http://www.shariqsheikh.com/blog/index.php/200804/how-to-rename-a-windows-server-2008-domain/

I would set up a 2008 Domain with an Exchange 2007 server in a lab (just two servers or VMs) and do a test before you execute it on your production network. It should work just fine though if you follow the steps.
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by:tigermatt
tigermatt earned 250 total points
ID: 22844945

I really would not recommend it. The fact you have Exchange in the equation means that there is little chance of the procedure succeeding. I would tell your customer the domain needs to be rebuilt.

-tigermatt
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by:dfxdeimos
ID: 22845553
I disagree.

They were comfortable enough with the RENDOM utility that they included it with Windows. It is now a supported operation ("unsupported" in Server 2000 & 2003).

Having an Exchange server in the organization shouldn't affect the chances of success in this instance.
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by:tigermatt
ID: 22845905

I still wouldn't do it. I have seen too many business networks (running on both 2003 and 2008) crippled as a result of a rename, with no network left to retrieve data from Exchange, User Accounts etc. It often works 25 times in a lab, but put it on a production system and it doesn't work.

Of course, if the author wants to proceed, that is their opinion, but from my own experience I would never recommend this.

-tigermatt
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by:dfxdeimos
ID: 22845972
It goes without saying that you would get full backups of all your critical servers before you attempt an operation like this (you should have them already though =] ).

I have done this a few times in production 2003 environments with Exchange 2003 without issues. They were single site domains with between 3 and 20 servers and 25 and 250 clients.

So yeah... test it in a lab, do it on a weekend, and have a recovery plan if you decide to do it.
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