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How do I migrate SBS2003 users after a crash?

Posted on 2009-04-07
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Last Modified: 2012-05-06
Hello,

My company's server got fried last week (the power supply "blew" up), and I'm in the process of building a new one.

I've searched the web but can't find a way to migrate the user accounts from files. Does anyone know if it is possible to do that? Keep in mind my machine cannot boot up, but I do have data backups of the files (including system files).

I don't need anything other than the users (no groups, etc.).

If I can't do that, if I get my new server to boot from the old hard drives, is there a way to save the users to a file I can import? (since I can't have both machines running at the same time)

Thanks in advance!
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Question by:HalfBrian
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Lee W, MVP earned 250 total points
ID: 24094606
Lots of questions and recommendations.

1.  What do you mean the power supply "blew" up?  If the power supply fried, did you try to replace JUST the power supply?  
2.  Isn't the server under warranty?  Any CRITICAL server should be under a 24x7x365 warranty with 4 hour response (if available in your area).  
3.  If you can't keep a 365x24x7 warranty on the server, you need to buy SPARES.  Ebay is great for that.
4.  Why are the user accounts so important but the group accounts NOT?
5.  This being SBS, you have, at most 75 users - probably less.  It's probably easier to just recreate the users.
6.  You may be able to PURCHASE UMove from UTools - this may be able to do what you want/need: http://utools.com/UMove.asp
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by:HalfBrian
ID: 24099670
1-3) The company basically doesn't have an IT budget, so I was the cost-saving measure.  (yes, I don't have much server experience)
4) Because I only really had users in two groups, Admin and Regular Users.
5) Yes, that would be easy, I was just seeing if I could transfer the users so I wouldn't have to re-do file permissions as well.
6) Thanks for that, it looks like a great tool.

From the UMove website, I found that the AD database is stored at %SystemRoot%\ntds\NTDS.DIT and through that I found this site: http://www.windowsnetworking.com/kbase/WindowsTips/Windows2000/AdminTips/ActiveDirectory/ActiveDirectorydatabasefileNTDS.DIT.html

I could probably do that pretty easily... thoughts?

And thanks for your prompt response leew.
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Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 24101342
1.  Power Supplies are cheap.
2.  How much money has the company LOST because the server has been down?  
3.  Spares on ebay (especially for old servers).
4.  Ok
5.  In light of zero budget, this is probably your best bet because:
6.  Umove is not free.  And I would be VERY surprised due to it's complexity if you could just copy and paste the AD database from one install to another.
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by:HalfBrian
ID: 24101408
1) Sorry, I forgot to mention I bought a new power supply, and that didn't do the trick.  And the reason I'm so sure it's totally dead is because my client saw smoke coming from the "lower part of the computer" (he pointed somewhere around the Northbridge) and when I got the new power supply to power up the fans and stuff, I smelled that electrical-component burning smell.
2) Not much actually, it's not really mission-critical.  Plus, they're a non-profit so they don't really make money (from transactions, etc.)
3) Good idea.

Thanks a lot, I think this question has been properly answered, but I'm going to wait until tonight to award points just in case someone has something else major.
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Author Closing Comment

by:HalfBrian
ID: 31567894
Thanks a lot!
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