Create A New SBS 2011 Domain And Migrate Selected AD/Exchange Data?

Posted on 2013-06-04
Last Modified: 2014-03-31

I recently took over a SBS 2011 domain environment which seems to be a total mess.

It has the following domain controllers in AD:


Server1 is found in active directory as a domain controller but is no longer physically available and I'm sure hasn't been online in ages. It appears to have been a SBS 2003 server.

Server2 is a windows 2003 standard server with nothing important aside from a SQL application that I can easily migrate.

MainServer is where everything is located, it is a SBS 2011 server with sharepoint and Exchange serving around 20 users.

The 2 servers are on one physical box running under a EXI 5.1 hypervisor.

I am having all kinds of issues, windows backup unable to run, sharepoint not working, extremely slow load times (on a xeon server with 6 cores and 32GB of ram), service and driver issues on boot, and disk corruption issues on server2 (MainServer is fine oddly even though they are on the same physical drive).

Instead of trying to fix issue by issue and hope everything works out I would like to get a new server, install SBS 2011, and only restore certain AD objects and exchange mailboxes that I need. I can't kill the entire domain and start from scratch as there are 20+ workstations hooked up to it and that would be an extremely difficult task I would like to avoid.

I was able to install backup exec 2012 and do full backups of both servers including exchange and system states with active directory data. SDR also seems to work fine which lets me do a bare metal restore without issues. Is it possible to create just one server with the same domain and same name as MainServer then only restore the objects that I need using backup exec? These objects would be the computer accounts, user accounts, and exchange mailboxes that actually exist in the environment (I want to remove ones that are no longer needed but still in AD). Will the existing users, computers, and mailboxes recognize  this domain and domain controller as if nothing ever happened? I can do a swap over the weekend and if possible I would like to do it as fast as possible, I don't trust this environment, it looks like it's ready to crash and burn at any point.

Help or advice would be greatly appreciated.
Question by:Pawel_Kowalski
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LVL 18

Expert Comment

by:Sarang Tinguria
ID: 39220932
I would suggest to go through below URL

Author Comment

ID: 39220990
Thanks for that. But if at all possible I would like to completely get rid of the existing environment and create a new one, only restoring what I need. That link seems to want to keep both environments up and running until a migration takes place which migrates everything including servers that are either no longer there or that I don't need. Is what I'm trying to do possible at all? Or is the only option to follow the migration procedures?
LVL 35

Accepted Solution

Cris Hanna earned 500 total points
ID: 39222232
If you create a new domain with a new SBS server install (and that's what it will create...even if you name it the same), you can' the best of my knowledge, selectively restore pieces from another AD.

This sounds like a botched migration from SBS 2003 to SBS 2011.   If you want some excellent help in getting this cleaned up, I consider reaching out to or   Both of these services are staffed by Microsoft SBS and other MVP's who can work with you to get you to a better place.  I have know involvement in either group other than they are fellow MVPs.

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