Win 2008 R2 transition

I’m looking for best ideas on negotiating from Server 2003 R2 to Windows Server 2008 R2.  I would like to actually rebuild from ground up, rather than migrate,  as the domain setup was started incorrectly years ago as a .org instead of .local, but what do you think is the best way to approach this?
We have 6 Domain Servers, 2 in each location, 1 Exchange Server 2003, 1 Terminal Server, 1 SQL Server

Obviously, we don’t want to lose any information on the Exchange server or Profiles and want as little downtime as possible for the network.

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Darius GhassemCommented:
Then you need to migrate and stay in the same domain. Going to a new domain can be complicated and time consuming.

Here is the thing you are just changing your internal domain name who cares what it is called or if it has .local or .org it is not causing any problems then leave it. Don't cause problems just cause.
B HCommented:
darius is right - it's better to just leave it as dot org...  in your dns forward lookup zones you can specify things however you want... like www to the external host, etc, and nobody is the wiser.

Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
I'm actually in the process of doing the same thing.  Utilizing Exchange 2010 and a new domain.  My plan is this:

1.  Create the basic Domain (done for me)
2.  Create a Trust (done for me; not going to work if either domain is an SBS domain)
3.  Start setting up various services that you want, including Exchange on the new systems (I'm setting up MOST systems virtually)
4.  Setup Exchange to accept mail for different domain (for example, if you're typical address is, then setup (hopefully you have that too) as your domain Exchange mail domain for the new server.  This is primarily to test and verify mail configuration).
5.  Migrate all data and user folders to the new domain (this will require multiple steps because, among other things, you can't do this all at once.  I intend to restore a full backup sans security to my new domain, reset permissions as I want them, and then as I do the final move, I'll expect to do a differential backup or a robocopy based on file date to get the final data I want migrated migrated).
6.  Once all is otherwise working, add my normal mail domain(s) to the new exchange server - they should work fine as we've tested with the other domain - and shutdown Exchange on the old domain, at least in so far as not permitting people to connect to it.  I'll then export the mailboxes via ExMerge and import them into the new exchange server and reconfigure the user's e-mail.  I fully expect some hiccups along the way, but I'm not expecting it to be too painful.

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LazarusAuthor Commented:
Leew,  I have .com, .org,  and .net All mail is already pickup for .net and .org What would I do in this situation?
I'm still siding with side by side migration as I want to change some interanal things withing the network, so doing it they way you are now is what I was also sort of aiming for. But, it's breaking new ground and I'm edgy on the attempt.
Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:


TECHNICALLY, you can get any domain you want.... but it seemed more logical/appropriate to use a variant of my normal domain.

Frankly, I've been planning/implementing this for 5 months now and making baby steps each week.  As is (unfortunately) usual for most IT consultants I know, working on ones' own network takes a backseat to clients networks.  I JUST confirmed my Exchange 2010 box is running as expected minutes ago and now I'm setting up RAS on the new domain so I can leave and work remotely.
LazarusAuthor Commented:
I'm not sure I follow your thought there with the email. I currently retreive email for .org, .net and .com. Are you saying to split one off to the other email server or to get a new one to use on that, like .info to strat it up then migrate the others over upon succeful completeion of the new server?
Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
What I'm saying is, get the Exchange server working and confirmed working.  The only way you can do that is to use a live domain.  TECHNICALLY, you can get any domain you want.... but it seemed more logical/appropriate to use a variant of my normal domain when I set things up.

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LazarusAuthor Commented:
Yes, that is what I was thinking you were saying, but was not sure. This change out follows my thinking and will fix some longtime issues with this network. So I will proceed this way. Thank you for your discussion on this.
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Windows Server 2008

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