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FIle Print Server

Posted on 2011-05-05
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2012-05-11
I have a client running Server 2003 R2 and would like to add a second server to be just a File server for Public Share. Their existing server houses an Accounting Program that seems to take a lot of the resources so this is one solution that may fit. There are approx 30 users that right now access the accounting program and a "Public" drive with just word, excel, pdf documents.

How difficult is it to add a second server to be just a file server and if the first one is running 2003 and the second one SBS 2008, is that an issue?

Any feedback would be appreciated
Question by:debcard
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Accepted Solution

Cliff Galiher earned 500 total points
ID: 35703507
If all you need is a fileserver then SBS is serious overkill. SBS is designed to be an integrated business solution providing client machine management, email communications, collaboration, and other services. If you won't be using those other services, it is actually difficult to get SBS to run the way you want because of its integrated nature. You'd be better off buying a Windows Server 2008 R2 Standard edition license and using that as a fileserver.


Assisted Solution

siht earned 500 total points
ID: 35703546
Is your current server a Domain Controller? If it is you cannot add an SBS 2008 server to your current Domain. SBS must be the Domain Controller, be the root of the Active Directory Forest and hold all of the FSMO roles.

If your current Server 2003 install is a DC then you are looking at a migration, the steps involved are detailed here:


Alternatively if your Domain is very small (5 -10 users) or you do not trust the state of your current Active Directory then you could just demote your current DC, set up SBS 2008 (with an all new AD) and then join your server 2003 as a member server. If you do this you will need to re do all file shares, user accounts and permissions.

If you are not currently running a Domain then you can set up SBS and add your current server as a member server. SBS will be fine as a file server but it will also be running AD, Exchange, Sharepoint and WSUS.

Also be aware that SBS 2011 has been released.


Author Comment

ID: 35703602
Thank you for your input.

The current server is a Domain Controller.

So what if I just did Server 2008 not SBS? Personally I don't need SBS

The current state of Active Directory is good and I understand there is some work to do. I am trying to do this the most cost effective way for my client.

I installed this server about 3 years ago and we just want it now to have the Accounting program and the data for the accounting program on it. Most users access shared public files and randomly go into the accounting, aside from the accounting dept that is in it all day, every day
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Author Comment

ID: 35703617
Thanks Cliff, I was just thinking the same thing.

For some reason my guy quoted me on SBS and I think you are right, overkill

Expert Comment

ID: 35703636
In that case then you will be fine with Server 2008 R2 Standard, as Cliff mentioned.
You'll need to install it, join it to the Domain as a member server and configure the File Server Role.

SBS is great, if you need it. In this case probably not.

Author Comment

ID: 35703657
Great, thanks for the input from both of you, sounds like an easy edition to the network

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