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Redirected User Profiles on New Server

Posted on 2014-04-04
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Last Modified: 2014-04-09
We are decommissioning the file server that holds our user profiles (profile, desktop, my documents, app data) and moving them to a new machine.

I am hoping that this is going to be as simple as running a backup on the profiles, copying them over, turning the old server off, restoring the profiles on the new machine along with the shares, renaming the new machine to the name of the old machine and changing the fixed IP of the new machine to that of the old.

Could it be that easy?
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Question by:JP_TechGroup
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LVL 79

Assisted Solution

by:arnold
arnold earned 668 total points
ID: 39979560
Are you using domain based share for the redirected folders? if you do, the change is seamless.
 
Double check the redirect GPO to make sure its settings is to copy the data back when the GPO no longer applies.
allow for a few days for the GPO changes if any to propagate.

Create a new GPO, but do not apply it that redirects the same folders to the new location.
make sure you backup the shares where the redirects are.
unlink the current GPO from applying to a USER and apply the new one to apply to the user.
After three or four logins, the USER's folder should redirected to the new server.

the difficulty deals with user A login on one system when the copy back starts, then the user logs in on another.

do you also have roaming profiles?
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LVL 37

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by:bbao
bbao earned 664 total points
ID: 39979580
basically, it seems you have already known what to do. it can be easy and smooth if every single detail has been considered in advance.

a few more things to be considered.

1. preparing. not all files need to be copied during the siwtching period as it might be a time consuming task to copy files in TB size. you do hope the switching period could be as short as possible. commonly, most shared files should be read only, and can be safely copied to the new server before switching. only leave the personal files to be copied while switching. the whole folder structure should be prepared before switching, too.

2. timing. the file sharing services should be switched from the old server to the newly installed one during off hours. it is not only for the users and client computers that need to access the their profiles over network, but also the back-end servers inclduing domain controllers. the two file servers will be sharing the same server name, IP address, but they can't share the same computer SID for the DCs, therefore the old server should be first renamed from the AD and assigned with another IP address, then the new sever needs to be manually added in the AD after giving the previously used name and IP.

3. restoring. the old server should be still in the AD before fully decommissioned. with newly assigned name and IP, it can be accessible by the new server just in case of any files to be restored.

4. permissions. files should be copied with permissions. use some bulk copy utilities such as XCOPY to do this.

hope this helps.
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LVL 25

Accepted Solution

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Coralon earned 668 total points
ID: 39979630
Yes, it is pretty much that easy.  

The real key is making sure you copy everything correctly.  In this type of migration, I will normally use robocopy.  The idea is to copy everything, including symbolic links..

Coralon
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Author Closing Comment

by:JP_TechGroup
ID: 39988846
Points all around... Robocopy is a god send!
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