can SBS 2003 connect to Server 2008 Standard R2

Posted on 2010-09-10
Last Modified: 2012-05-10
I have a new Server 2008 Standard R2 that will be running as a single Application and Exchange Server.  
It is replaceing a SBS 2003 server.
Does SBS 2003 have any restrictions when trying to connect to the 2008 domain?

I only want the SBS 2003 online to hold a backup of our Quickbooks data, so if the 2008 Server goes down, I will be able to access my data.

I only have 10 users.
Question by:bmsjeff
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LVL 95

Accepted Solution

Lee W, MVP earned 500 total points
ID: 33650368
If you only have 10 users and you are using Exchange, why didn't you get SBS 2008?

SBS MUST be the FSMO master of the domain it is in.  If it isn't it will start shutting down periodically.  SBS does NOT support trusts with other domains, so if you "started over" then you won't be able to easily or seemlessly integrate the two.

Expert Comment

ID: 33650483
You will need to migrate fully away from the SBS 2003 box. You will need to join the new server to the domain, run dcpromo on it, migrate the FSMO roles,  install Exchange and migrate the mailboxes and public folders. Once you are done with that, you can uninstall the Exchange component on the SBS 2003 machine (this removes the 2003 server from the Exchange org), then demote and disjoin the old server. If they are left coexisting with the FSMO roles transferred for more than a 7 days, you should expect the SBS to shut down randomly, as they don't want you to do what you are trying to do long term.

This has some good information in it:
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Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 33650563
Actually, it's 21 days if you the SBS patched up to date.  But that's only if you transfer the FSMO roles.  If the new server is NOT SBS, then you don't have to do that so long as you the SBS server as the FSMO master DC.
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Do you wish that you could place an email signature under a reply? Well, unfortunately, you can't. That great Exchange/Office 365 signature you've created will just appear at the bottom of an email chain. What a pain! Is there really no way to solve this? Well, there might be...

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Author Comment

ID: 33650647
I want the 2008 machine to be the DC.  I just want the SBS 2003 Server to "lay in wait"
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Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 33650677
First, why just ONE DC?  Why not two?

As I stated:
SBS MUST be the FSMO master of the domain it is in.  If it isn't it will start shutting down periodically.  
There is no option in this.  This is how it is.  The only option is to buy the transition pack (I don't think it's even sold anymore) and remove the restriction.  And the transition pack would cost you at least as much as a new server license.

And again, why didn't you go to SBS 2008 to save some money and keep features like the Remote Web Workplace?
LVL 14

Author Comment

ID: 33650711
The server was purchased already with 2008 Standard.  

Currently, none of the stations are connecting to the domain.  They are all Workgroup PC's.
They are not using Exchange currently.
It is basically a file server.
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Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 33650737 someone overspent significantly.  Since buying an Exchange license will likely cost as much as buying an SBS 2008 license  and they already spent money on the non-transferrable OEM license for Windows.  Did the 2008 server come with 64 bit Windows or 32 bit?  If 32, you cannot run Exchange.  You will NEED to replace the server operating system.

Given the picture as it is emerging from your comments, I would strongly recommend hiring a consultant to get things done properly lest your company continue to overspend needlessly on licensing and set things up inappropriately in such a way that productivity enhancements aren't utilized (higher productivity generally means higher revenue).  


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