Upgrade domian controllers currently Server 2003 (x86) to 2008 r2 (x86)

Posted on 2011-10-24
Last Modified: 2012-05-12

I don't expect anyone to answer thsi in great length as there is plenty of info out there BUT I would like advice on which way to appraoch this!

I have 3 sites and 3 x DC's all on physical x86 architecture and Windows 2003 Enterprise.

I want to Upgrade them to Windows server 2008R2.

My problem is 2008R2 is ONLY 64bit.

I'm GUESSING i would do one of the following:

- buy 3 new physical servers and install a fresh 2008r2 and then somehow move all the roles across and decomission old DC's
- add 3 new 2008r2 DC's and trust/sync them up and then shut off od ones?
- Do some virtualisation, but is having DC's as VM's practical/best practise?

Does anyone have a good step-by-step link/guide?

Any feedback would be greatfuly received or any advice or gotchas from someone who has done this very thing?
Question by:CWCAVIT
    LVL 59

    Accepted Solution

    Here is a full guide

    Here is an article on adprep32

    Best option would be to purchase new hardware that supports Windows 2008 Server R2 to install

    You can have DCs as virtual machines but recommended to have at least one physical DC.
    LVL 39

    Assisted Solution

    by:Krzysztof Pytko
    Yes, there is no x32 of Windows Server 2008 R2
    I would recommend adding the new 2008 R2 DC into existing forest. You may check how to do that on my blog

    For adding the first 2008 R2 DC

    to add any other DCs

    LVL 33

    Assisted Solution

    You can follow your initial plan:
    1) Buy servers
    2) Install 2k8R2
    3) Promote to DCs
    4) Move roles as approprirate
    5) Demote old DCs

    DC can and have been virtualized.  There's no specific penalty for this.  I'm sure instructions exist, but you'd need to indicate what you want instructions for.
    LVL 1

    Assisted Solution

    Build and Install 2008R2 server, run dcpromo and follow the wizard, add DNS/DHCP role as required:
    Transfer FSMO roles:
    Demote 2003 DCs (dcpromo again)

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