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Windows 2003 R2 Repair Reinstall

Posted on 2014-02-18
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Last Modified: 2016-11-23
I have a Dell T100 Server with Windows 2003 R2 server OS. I want to repair the operating system by booting on the windows CD and doing a Repair to reload damaged files. The server  was shipped by request with 2003 R2 which was too old then so the CD and license with it is for 2008 R2 server.
I tried to order a disk from Dell and then Microsoft but they cannot provide because the OS is too old and not supported. They apparently don't have any stock of these.
I have a 2003 R2 server disk from another customer of mine. Can I run the repair using that disk and then should the Product Key on the sticker on the repaired computer work? Failing that can I use the other customers Product Key to repair the OS? They are both valid installations and I just need to repair the OS.
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Question by:Grant Dunsmore
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Andrej Pirman earned 500 total points
ID: 39869062
Yes, you can do any of proposed repair scenarios, as long as repair disc is of the same version as installed OS on server. Many times customers try to repair using original discs, but they forgot they upgraded the system to SP1, SP2 or something on the go, so original discs cannot be used for repair anymore in this case.
Product key does not matter for repair process. It might not be legal, but it will work. You can change your product key later on, when you have working system.

Just keep in mind to BACKUP everything first! I usually do full disk image and additional backup of important files. Just in case.
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Author Closing Comment

by:Grant Dunsmore
ID: 39879867
Thank you for the info. I will clone the original server hard drive first and then try the repair.
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