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Migration from NT4 to Windows 2000

By PSX ·
I am running an NT4 Domain (1PDC, 1BDC) with Exchange 5.5 and MS SQL server 7.0. I am planning a migration to Windows 2000. My SQL server is on the NT4 PDC. The network contains less than 50 users therefore I am focusing on upgrading to SBS 2000. My current migration plan is as follows:

1) Purchase and install SBS 2000 (includes SQL Server 2000 & Exchange Server 2000) onto a new box. Install SQL Server 2000, leaving Exchange 2000 out of the installation (I have a separate server running Exchange 5.5. I plan to use AD with 5.5 for about 6 months. After this period, the Exchange Server will be upgraded with a separate Exchange 2000 license).
2) Introduce the new AD Server with SQL 7 into the existing NT domain.
3) Demote the NT PDC and promote the Win2K AD Server to become the "PDC"
4) Migrate existing data from SQL Server 7 to SQL server 2000 and redirect all database requests to the new server
5) When everything is okay, take out the old PDC. Eventually upgrade the NT BDC to another domain server within the new AD Tree.

My questions:
Q1) Since SBS 2000 does not allow the instllation of its components onto different machine, I will have to buy a new Exchange 2000 as well as the required amount of CALs. Can I upgrade my current Exchange 5.5 CALs to Exchange 2000 CALs?

Q2) What will happen to my BDC when the new AD server is introduced into the current NT domain? What role will this BDC serve? As another server in the domain?

Q3) Exchange 5.5 working in an AD domain: How well does this work? Will it work at all?
Q3b) There is an Active Directory Connector that Win2K Server uses to extract directory data from Exchange 5.5. Does this work the other way?

Q4) Is it possible to directly upgrade my current NT4 PDC to a 2000 SBS server without buying and extra box? Is it feasible?

Q5) What about SBS 2003? Pricing is 3x as much for SBS 2003 Standard Edition (no SQL 2000 Server). The CALs are so expensive (abou $2000 per 20-pack).

Any help would be

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by shawn In reply to Migration from NT4 to Win ...

To answer your questions:

Q1) You should have no issues in upgrading your current Exchange 5.5 CALs to Exchange 2000 CALs.

Q2) See note below.

Q3) Exchange 5.5 does work OK in an AD domain - the last place I worked, we had it running with Exchange 5.5 for 9+ months, until the funds for the Exchange upgrade were approved. This org had 12 sites and somewhere around 1500 users in Exchange, and worked well until the Exchange 2000 implementation.
Q3b) No the information flow is one way. You will get information sharing once you upgrade Exchange 5.5 to Exhange 2000.

Q4)This is a depends question: depends on how heavily used your PDC currently is, how "beefy" the hardware is, the timeframe for your upgrade (ie. overnight, over a weekend, etc.), etc. etc.

Q5) The problem you might run into here is availablity of any of the 2000 family in the next little while. Vendors are currently "burining off" inventory because Microsoft is no longer shipping anything from the 2000 family, focusing on 2003 instead.

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by shawn In reply to

As a Note: your implementation plan has one point that will not work. You cannot have a Windows 2000 domain controller participate in a Windows NT-based domain. Windows 2000 will exist in Windows NT domains only as member servers, not as domain controllers. When you run dcpromo on a Windows 2000 server to turn it into a domain controller, you are not given the option of joining an existing Windows NT domain. You might have better luck with looking at a migration strategy, migrating your PDC. Check out the Microsoft site for tons of great info and help with performing migrations.


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by PSX In reply to

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by PSX In reply to Migration from NT4 to Win ...

Thanks. I've increased the point value but would like to keep this question open as I still need help with this project.

I was considering migrating my entire domain (with all servers) over to Win2K or 2K3 in one upgrade process but that was too much work and too many services to migrate (not to mention the headaches that would result) so I decided to break everythign up and tackle the upgrade tasks one by one. Here are the steps:

1) I get a new server running Win2K3 Server. Make it the PDC on its own AD domain (I'm running an SBS 4.5 domain and SBS doesn't allow me to *attach* another domain to it).
2) Establish a two-way trust relationship between the new domain and the existing domain (hopefully this is possible).
3) Slowly move domain clients and servers over to the new AD domain (over a period of 1 to 2 months).
4) Install a new server to host SQL 2000 on the new domain. Migrate all existing databases and SQL-related resources over to the new domain.
5) Redirect all existing application servers (that connects to the old SQL server) to the new SQL server.
6) Export all existing email resources (mailboxes, rules, public folders) to flat files. Reformat HD on the existing Exchange 5.5 server and install Exchange 2003. Join this new server to the new AD domain. Restore all data from flat files.

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by PSX In reply to Migration from NT4 to Win ...

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