2000 to 2003 Server upgrade from hell

Posted on 2010-01-06
Last Modified: 2013-12-05
I am having an issue upgrading a server from Windows 2000 Server to Windows 2003 Server.  The issue is that when trying the upgrade we get as far as installing devices then it blue screens to a "driver mismanages PTE" error.  Okay then we tried to do a fresh install and after the reboot before setup begins we get another blue screen "unmountable boot drive" error.  The server has a 3 - 160 GB raid 5 stripe configuration.  All updates are in place and drivers have been updated.  We have been fighting this for 3 days and I don't know what else to do.  I need suggestions.  
Question by:gtdidea
    LVL 46

    Expert Comment

    Well, after 3 days you might want to consider just using your favorite virtual machine engine and just get it to work  that way.  This takes the hardware/driver issues out of the equation and then you can start doing work.  Then as time permits you can dig deeper, or even migrate the new virtual Win2K3 into a physical Win2K3 machine that has now been cleaned up.

    Author Comment

    That thought had crossed my mind, but I am not too versed in virtual servers, what would you suggest?  I also looked up Windows virtual server 2005 and it does not support server 2000 so that won't work.
    LVL 46

    Accepted Solution

    Sun's virtualbox is free, and opensource, and works quite well.  VMWare is a premium product, enterprise class, and is a solid foundation to deploy virtualization on a large scale, and there are some nice add-ones that you can purchase which will help with backup/restores.

    Parallels has a 30 day free download.  I use that product myself, and my intel-based mac has virtual machines for Win2K, Win7, Vista64, Solaris & LINUX that I run as necessary.  

    My Win2000 server runs some old accounting software which wasn't supported on Win2K3 (without going through a painful upgrade), so I just ended up converting it to a virtual machine and running it as necessary.  It is at least 3 times faster running as a virtual machine on more modern hardware then it was running in a 2U enclosure.  The win2K box also had an adaptec raid controller and older graphics card which wouldn't work on more modern operating systems, so I just virtualized the system and after maybe 5 minutes of my time and an hour on the clock, it was running.

    Great thing about virtual machines, backup is easy, as you just copy the single large data file, and you NEVER have to worry about hardware drivers again, and never have to worry about being forced to add patches or upgrade the O/S.  Heck, just go back to win2K on a virtual machine and if it lasted this 10 years for you, then chances are good it will last another 10 years.  As you upgrade hardware, just copy over the subdirectory that contains the machine and you are up and going immediately.  It didn't even ask for a license key update so it was VERY painless.

    Author Comment

    Can I install 2003 server as a virtual machine and make it the domain controller as a virtual server?  and how does that work?  When the computer boots it will boot to Windows 2000 server.  Do you put in a script to automatically load the virtual server as well?
    LVL 8

    Expert Comment

    My opinion is since you don't want to use VM check if your hardware is compatible with Windows 2003 requirements if not proceed to the Virtual Environment solution !

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