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Adding Windows 2008 Server to 2003 Server Domain

Hi Experts!

I have an old Windows 2003 Server (DC) running a proprietary old software as well as being used as a file server for a 20 workstation office network.

I'm intending to add a new Windows 2008 server, and use it as backup DC/DNS, and move the File Server role to it as well so that the old server is only running that old proprietary software (since it's taking up a lot of resources).

How would I add the Server 2008 as a backup domain controller to the old 2003 server? I've read that I need to use adprep command on 2003 server, but I'm afraid that it may break something...

Does new Win2008 server need to be added to the Domain before it can become a backup Domain Controller? Currently it's in the Workgroup, I installed ADDS services, and tried to run dcpromo, but it was saying that it couldn't find the DC - even though I entered its IP in DNS and they're connected to the same switch.

Please help. Thanks in advance!

4 Solutions
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Yes, the Win2k8 server must be a domain member. (add it to the domain).

and then run DCPROMO.
You must run adprep before you can dcpromo a 2008 server into a 2003 domain.
Kaptain1Author Commented:
Is "adprep" safe to run? I'm afraid that it messes up something on my Win2003 server... the server runs an old software production which I don't have support/install CD for :-/ so I have to be very careful not to break anything.

Thanks hancocka, i'll add the Win2008 server to Domain first...
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There is always going to be some risk involved (even if it is small) that is why you need to be sure to get a good backup before going forward. I recently completed the same scenario as you with very few issues. You are not going to be able to have the new server as a backup dc/dns until you do run adprep
Whoops! I guess the article I listed above would apply if you were running a SBS network but you probably are not. Sorry it's been a long day. The process is pretty much the same as listed in the article above but there could be a couple of deviations
Mike KlineCommented:
Take a look at this question I helped with, step by step in those links


I'll say the same thing I said there, have you thought about going to 2008 R2 instead of 2008

You can always test in a lab but adprep is a safe process.



Since you have mentioned that the server is in the "Workgroup", can you add the 2003 DC entry in the host file of Windows 2008 and then run the "adprep" command and it is not necessary to add it to the domain (Member Server) Hope you will have not an issue.

If you still face an issue please post the same here.

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