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Migrate Windows 2003 Server to new domain

Posted on 2014-03-11
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Last Modified: 2014-03-17
Hi there,

We have a Windows 2003 Server VM that we need to migrate to a new domain.  We need to do this because our company was purchased and the new company has their own domain.  Since it's a VM we want to make a snapshot first before we move it to the new domain in case there are problems after it is moved.  But since it is being removed from the old domain, the computer account will be disabled and removed automatically by AD.  If we need to revert to the old snapshop, how can we ensure that the 2003 VM will work with the old domain without having to re-add it to the old domain.  Anyway we can simply create a new computer account in AD and have the 2003 server recognize itself in AD again, if we have to revert?

Thanks,
- Christian
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Question by:Christian Palacios
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Expert Comment

by:Peter Hutchison
ID: 39922183
If you take a computer out of the old domain, it will disable rather than delete the old computer account. So, as long as you do not delete it, you could potentially re-add it back in, if you needed it.
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N-W earned 500 total points
ID: 39922328
What I would do is:
1) Take snapshot
2) Disconnect the VM from any networks
3) Change the server from domain to workgroup
4) Reconnect the VM to network and join new domain

With this method, the old domain doesn't know that the server has changed domain and the computer account remains untouched. If you need to roll back, just revert to the old snapshot and everything remains the same as it was before.
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Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 39922512
Why is it a problem to disconnect from the domain and reconnect it to the domain if you had to?  Reset the computer account in AD and rejoin.  Simple.
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Author Comment

by:Christian Palacios
ID: 39926691
Thank you N-W.  Just a quick question, have you tried your suggestion before?  It sounds like it will work just fine, but I'm just curious if it's been done before.

Thanks!
- Christian
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Expert Comment

by:N-W
ID: 39927833
Yes, I've used it many times before and have never had a problem.
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Author Closing Comment

by:Christian Palacios
ID: 39934953
Thanks, this worked great!!
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