sbs2003 to sbs2011 migration
Posted on 2012-04-03
What would be the best/safest approach for migrating sbs2003 (DNS, AD, Exchange Services) to New sbs2011 environment? Also, is there a easy-to-read guide available for this situation?
1) A 6 year old sbs2003 R2 Standard Server running the following crucial services:
- Active directory, DNS, MS Exchange (10 active email users.)
* Hard-drives have been running critically-low on space for several months now, and instead of upgrading components on the old-server that was originally managed by another 3rd IT Company, decision from higher-ups has been made to simply buy a new server and migrate everything that's currently in-place, (listed above, to the best of my knowledge.)
** There's no secondary server running to fall back on, if this server suddenly decides to crash, this small company is screwed, and so am I.
-- I understand there will obviously be downtime throughout this process, but i wish to obviously take the route with the least amount of downtime, perhaps 1-3hrs for several days or more.
(I only have experience with configuring & joining a WinServer 2008 to a WinServer 2003 environment -- raising functional level from win2000 on source server, then transferring roles from source server to win2008 server with it's role as a File-Server running DNS & active directory; I have extremely limited understanding of MS Exchange and how it works as far as Backing-Up/ Migrating/ and configuring mailbox's.)
2) New SBS2011 server has arrived, there's an initial Wizard that was attempting to automate everything (such as transferring roles, and eventually to decommission the the win2003 server after 30-days or so,) but I quickly cancelled the Wizard, to avoid disrupting the current SBS2003 environment, since again, I fear of making a change, and destroying Email and such on the sbs2003 server, which I can't risk.
I imagine from what I've seen on the internet and on MS's website, create answer-file, automate everything (supposedly), but I have to take into account, if i start this process, and mess up, the can I fall back on the sbs2003 to run the Email incase of sbs2011 configuration failure?
Or Should I configure sbs2011 from ground-up, new AD, New MS exchange, new DNS etc, and then attempt to transfer the EMAIL from exchange on sbs2003 on sbs2011? ( I like this approach better, but is this feasible?)
Please, any help of suggestions will be greatly appreciated.