How to migrate DHCP server database from server 2003 to server 2012 VIA only the GUI


I need to migrate an existing DHCP service away from and off of an older 2003 server to server 2012.  I want to extract the database and import it into the new server once I have installed the role.  

I am thinking this is as easy as going into the DHCP server console on the 2003 server and then clicking backup.  Then copy the back up file to the new server, installing the DHCP role and hopefully there will be an import function in the 2012 server version that can read the 2003 database format.  Is this the case?

Everything I've seen online seems to show people using command line.  I dont want to use command line wherever possible, especially if there is a simple GUI way of doing this, which there seems to be.  Is there a reason people are using command line and there seems to be no examples (that I have found) of people using the GUI for the entire process?  Like is the GUI way known to be buggy or broken in some way?

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David Johnson, CD, MVPOwnerCommented:
the gui isn't as all inclusive as the command line especially since you are going from one architecture to another.  use the command line
Netsh dhcp server dump > text_dhcp_config.txt
Edit the file change the IP reflected for the server.

Then rerun portions dealing with setting up the scope, reservation, scope options ...
CnicNVAuthor Commented:
How is it not as inclusive as the command line?  What portions of the DHCP database does the GUI omit?

Making Bulk Changes to Active Directory

Watch this video to see how easy it is to make mass changes to Active Directory from an external text file without using complicated scripts.

Steve KnightIT ConsultancyCommented:
I'm with arnold, that is really easy way and best, dumps all dhcp config to a text file, that's your backup aswell as the old server anyway etc.  Open that in Notepad and edit anything you want, then you run that on your new machine with

netsh exec textfilename.txt

Works really well.  If you have multiple subnets / vlans will need to change your router/switches to send to the new DHCP server etc.

The use of netsh dhcp server dump outputs the commands in plain text to get the dhcp configured

I am unclear which DHCP database you are backing up, the allocated IPs?

backup/restore only works if you maintain the same name/ip on the new server that matches the old.
with DHCP it is unnecessary and makes a simple transition more complicated than it needs to be.
You can have as many DHCP servers authorized to run as you want as long as each only allocates a unique set of IPs.

Step 0) If you must only use the GUI, first thing to do in preparation for the introduction of a new DHCP server, is to add an exclusion range of IPs the duration of the configured Lease time before as well as reducing the lease time if too long. i. a 7 day lease, you would add the exclusion block 7 days before the activation of the new DHCP server. Nothing preventing you within those 7 days to prep the new server.
1) Add DHCP role.
2) Authorize the DHCP server in the AD
3) add the entire scope of IPs but without enabling the scope.
4) add the exclusions to match the static block, exclusion of IP ranges allocated by the existing DHCP server such that the only IPs this server will be able to allocated is the IP range you added to the existing DHCP server Prior to beginning this process in step 0.
5) enough time having passed (leased IPs on existing server no longer include the excluded block from Step 0), you can activate the scope on the new DHCP server.

At this point you are all set, you can transition at will to the new.

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CnicNVAuthor Commented:
Ok thanks, I will try this out.
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Windows Server 2003

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