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Simple AD question about Windows 2003/2008

Posted on 2011-03-24
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Last Modified: 2012-06-21
Hi,
I'm pretty sure I know the answer to this but I wanted to check first as I'm not an expert on AD.

I have two windows server 2003 machines in the same domain. They are both domain controllers (primary and backup).  The primary 2003 machine is running Exchange 2003.
I am going to be upgrading to Exchange 2010, using instructions I found in an excellent article here on EE.

One of the first steps in the procedure is to connect the Windows 2008 machine to the 2003 domain and make it a member server and then a DC.
Since I already have Primary DC and a backup DC (Server 2003 machines) is it OK if I connect a Windows 2008 machine and make it a DC also? Or should I remove the backup 2003 DC machine and THEN add in my 2008 machine as the backup DC?

The end result of all this will be that both 2003 machines will be going away and I will have two 2008 machines (Primary DC, with Exchange 2010 and backup DC with Exchange 2010 [I know it's not a best practice])

One more note, the 2003 machines also have DNS on them.

Thanks!

Mike
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Question by:nachtmsk
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Expert Comment

by:Mike Kline
ID: 35207129
There is no concept of primary/backup in AD.  They are both full writable copies.

So yes you can connect a 2008 machine and make that a DC.   You will have to first update the schema

I have some steps here   http://www.experts-exchange.com/OS/Microsoft_Operating_Systems/Server/Windows_Server_2008/Q_26358376.html

I'd also go to 2008 R2 at this point.

Thanks

Mike
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Saoi earned 500 total points
ID: 35207144
Hi,

Yes, the simple answer is that you can add as many Domain Controllers as you like, they just become additional "backup" domain controllers. Once you've done your forest and domain preparations (I'm assuming the how-to covers them) you can install the Domain Controller on 2008 (I'd also install the DNS role, as you will be depreciating the old 2003 DNS servers).

Sam
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Expert Comment

by:Darius Ghassem
ID: 35207292
Like others have said there is no problem you can have multiple Domain Controllers this is not a problem.

Here are some extra steps to take a look at as well.

http://www.experts-exchange.com/OS/Microsoft_Operating_Systems/Server/Windows_Server_2008/Q_23665224.html

Article about changes in adprep when moving to Windows 2008 Server R2.

http://www.experts-exchange.com/OS/Microsoft_Operating_Systems/Server/Windows_Server_2008/A_3644-Windows-2008-Server-R2-adprep-adprep32.html
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Expert Comment

by:binary_1001010
ID: 35209895
PDC/BDC is a term for NT4. You dont have to join a server to domain first you promote it to DC. you can promote it from stand alone.

and please take note, if you are going to decom your 2k3, you must seize your FSMO roles.
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