SBS to Server 2012 Standard

I have a client with SBS 2008. We are replacing the server and are switching to Server 2012 standard. Is it possible to add the new server to the SBS domain shut down the SBS server and promote the new 2012 server to be the PDC with all of the primary roles running on it?
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Cliff GaliherCommented:
Not in the order you listed. But yes, you can join a 2012 Server to an SBS 2008 domain. Promote it. Uninstall exchange from SBS (to clean up AD objects). Transfer FSMO roles. Demote SBS. Format or recycle the server.

As always, make plenty of backups throughout the migration. Follow Microsoft's migration guidance throughout the process. Test regularly. And have a detailed plan going in.
hanniemcleanAuthor Commented:
I could be wrong but doesn't an sbs server have to be the pdc?
Cliff GaliherCommented:
Since it is the second time you have used that term....there is no such thing as a PDC anymore. Hasn't been since 2000. One of the FSMO roles is the PDC Emulator, which is exactly what it sounds like. It emulates PDC functionality for pre-2000 machines and software.

Which is important because SBS must hold ALL of the FSMO roles, not just the PDC Emulator role.

However that doesn't change my advice. When you transfer the FSMO roles (which is not blocked), you break SBS licensing. This is ALLOWED during a migration. SBS will log events and will enter a countdown. When the grace period expires (7 days by default) it shuts down. And if you restart it, it will continue to shut down regularly.

That 7 day grace period is by design exactly to allow migrations like yours. It is legal and allowed. Which is also why my final steps were demote AND REFORMAT. You cannot continue to run SBS as a member Server long term.

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