Exch / AD setup question

I have inherited a very small (<50 users) active directory setup with the domain like example.local

There is only one domain controller which is also a HyperV Host (2008R2).

I want to move the domain controller to a VM on that host and also change the domain to internal.example.com

Exchange has not been installed yet but will be soon.

Nothing but an address book and group policy is really being done with AD.

There is one SQL server on a joined server (another physical machine) but it doesn't rely on AD.  

My question is which would be the least work and least likely to cause problems?

1) Create the new VM DC with the new domain internal.example.com and migrate
2) Create the new VM DC with the old name example.local and then demote the existing DC on this HyperV host and then rename the domain

or if there is a better 3rd option.
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Will SzymkowskiSenior Solution ArchitectCommented:
If you do not have Exchange in your environment already then this is a good thing. Exchange 2007 and up does not support a domain rename. As long as your Forest Functional Level is 2003 you can rename your domain FQDN.

I would perform the steps below...
- create a new VM (DC) you would now have 2 DC's Host and VM
- transfer the fsmo foles to the VM DC
- demote Host DC
- create another VM DC so you have an additional DC for redundancy
- rename your internal FQDN domain
- install Exchange Server

Make sure that before you perform the domain name change that nothing else is dependent on the current example.local domain.

There is no need to migrate to another Forest Root domain because Exchange is not present in your environment.

Domain Rename


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