I have to upgrade a 2003 32 bit server to server 2008 R2 do I have to start from scratch?

Server 2003 will no longer be supported requires my upgrading from 2003 32 bit to server 2008 r2 64 bit. Does the cross architecture require a complete reinstall. I think this is the case and would like verification.
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Thomas GrassiSystems AdministratorCommented:
Is this Server a Domain Controller DC?

I would use a new box and build the 2008 Server and run parallel to make sure you have everything

Especially if this Windows 2003 server is a DC set up the 2008 server as a DC and transfer all the Roles to the 2008 server
elsajaneAuthor Commented:
No it is an application server
Kamran MallikIT Technical EngineerCommented:
I would agree with trgrassijr55. This is the best way to do this. Once you have built your server 2008 as a DC and transferred the role, you can then run 'dcpromo' to demote server 2003 and decommission.
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Thomas GrassiSystems AdministratorCommented:
Even if it is an application server I would use a new box.

Then install the applications on the 2008 server to test them out

With 2008 you will be running 64 bit server which may lead to application problems. Best to test first.
Joshua GrantomSenior Systems AdministratorCommented:
To verify the original question,


There is no direct upgrade path from Server 2003 32-bit to Server 2008 R2. You will need to build a new machine for Server 2008 R2 then re-install all of the applications that are running on the Server 2003 box.

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elsajaneAuthor Commented:
correction this is a file server only
Kamran MallikIT Technical EngineerCommented:
If it is an application server then yes you can go ahead and upgrade. However, I would read the following doc before upgrading:


Let me know if this is OK.
More than likely your old server will not support 64-bit.  I found that to be the case here and have already scrapped four 2003 32-bit servers.
Joshua GrantomSenior Systems AdministratorCommented:

you cannot upgrade from 32-bit to 64-bit

Server 2008 R2 is a 64 bit only OS
Kamran MallikIT Technical EngineerCommented:
Sorry didn't see comment about it being 64bit
Thomas GrassiSystems AdministratorCommented:
I think you gave the point to the wrong guy here
Joshua GrantomSenior Systems AdministratorCommented:

They were asking for verification if an upgrade from Server 2003 32-bit to Server 2008 R2 was possible, I gave him a direct answer to the question.
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Windows Server 2003

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