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File Server Migration Toolkit

Posted on 2014-11-23
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Last Modified: 2015-01-14
Hi guys,
Hope you are well and can assist.
In our environment, we are spinning up replacement File and Print Servers.
The existing servers are running either Windows 2003 or 2008.
We intend on replacing them with 2012 R2 server.
As such, we are investigating data transfer and file and print server migration options, of which the "File Server Migration Toolkit" has cropped up.
Guys, have anyone of you:
- used it?
- does it cater for use for a migration from 2003 to 2012?
- your experiences (is it worth using)
- is it better over a robocopy procedure?
- anything else relevant.

Thanks guys.
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Question by:Simon336697
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hsclater earned 2000 total points
ID: 40461895
Hi there

The tool is fine for smaller deployments, and simplifies the process. But you still need to understand what it is doing, and what the implications are. I have done file migrations for Enterprises with >50TB of data, consolidation multiple servers to a single DFS root, there is no way we could have used this tool. We used Robocopy with powershell scripts to migrate all the data, running scheduled jobs over the weekend, and multiple times in order to do the initial copy and then keep it up to date.

One of the main issues is when you are changing the paths, as many users may have shortcuts which refer to a server name, even though they should have been using a mapped drive. So whilst changing a drive mapping to point to a new share might seem low risk, you can bet you will break something somewhere. That is where a well planned DFS installation comes in, take the opportunity to move to domain based DFS if you are not using it already, it will be the next time so much easier - you then just update the DFS link once the data has moved. In fact the way we normally do this, is plan and implement DFS first. So create your DFS structure and then slowly move all the shares and drives over to DFS paths. Then when you migrate the data, you just update the link and all users flip over the the new location.

Make very sure to make the source as read only when you migrate, to avoid any possibilty of users writing changes to 2 locations.

Also see the following for printer migration.
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/jj134150.aspx
Use the printer migration wizard or printbrm.exe.
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by:Simon336697
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Thanks so much. Sorry about the delay.
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