By Wizard-09 ·
Whats the best thing that i can do here ?

PDC It's not booting. Goes through some of the POST then stop after detecting the SCSI devices. It's way louder than normal too and so old it's tough to trouble shoot. I'm having to take it apart at present.

Both UPS devices up here are presenting with battery problems so it's likely been a power spike that brought down the server. It affected the Terminal server as well but that came up itself.

If we can't get this fixed we may have to look at an emergency way of promoting an existing server to a domain controller. It's an NT4 domain, but we wouldn't be able to migrate the existing information. I'd not be wanting to create a new domain and have to go around adding all the computers to it if I could avoid it. Even if I can get this back up and running it will definitely be a case of phasing that PDC out and upgrading the domain to something else. There's a spare 2003 server computer here so whats the best way we can do this.

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All Answers

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by christianshiflet In reply to PDC

First, I am sorry to hear this as DC issues are no fun. You mentioned that the server won't boot. Are you running any form of RAID on the PDC and do you have a working backup of the PDC including System State? I am also assuming that you don't have a backup DC running at this time.

The first thing I would try would be an in place upgrade, or a repair install, of the original OS. Atleast by beginning this process you will find out if the computer can boot from disk and if it correctly identifies the hard drives and partitions. Repair installs shouldn't destroy the domain but it may make a few applications unusable.

Let me know a few more details and I will try to help with any information I can.

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by Wizard-09 In reply to Re: PDC

Its backup and running again, i don't want this to happen again so i want to upgrade the PDC to 2003 its currenly nt4 but i don't want to recreate all the odjects like computers and users and the like, so question is it might be a silly on can i join a 2003 server to the domain run it as a 2nd DC then use the ADMT to move the odject and the like?

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Re: Up

by christianshiflet In reply to Up

You should be able to add a Win2k3 server to the domain as a member server, run DCPROMO to upgrade it to a 2nd DC, and finally run DCPROMO again to make it the PDC, which should automatically demote the NT4 server to a secondary, or backup, DC. From there check out to seize the FSMO roles from the original server. You shouldn't need to use ADMT since you aren't migrating one domain to another, but upgrading an existing, and thankfully now functional, domain.

Also, be sure to leave the Domain Functional Level as Mixed Mode until you have fully removed the old DC from the domain. Let me know if this helps or you have any questions.


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by Wizard-09 In reply to Re: Up

So once i do that and have the BDC up and running will it copy all the users from the nt domain controller and place a copy on the 2003 BDC or do i have to add the account and computers again?


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by christianshiflet In reply to Thanks

All domain information in Active Directory including users, computers, GPOs, and such will be copied to the new domain controller during the DCPROMO process. You do have the option to skip that step and wait for the next scheduled replication but if you have a fairly small domain I would let it complete so you can continue making any further changes. You will also likely have to reboot the server between many of these steps so doing all of this when that is a possibility would be preferred.

Let me know if you have any questions. Thanks.

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by Wizard-09 In reply to BDC

This is a nt4 domain it dont run on AD, so how can it copy users and the like?

I have posted a new question called 2003 maybe take a look at that and see if it looks right?


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Re: But

by christianshiflet In reply to But

I KNEW I was forgetting something! You are correct in that you will want to use the ADMT to migrate the user accounts to the new 2003 server after using DCPROMO to make it a domain controller under your new domain name. A possibly easier solution might be to run an inplace upgrade on your current PDC to get AD running on it first under your new domain name. Once your new DC is up and made into the PDC, simply demote the old server to BDC, then to a member, than remove it entirely.

Either way should work but the inplace upgrade would require more downtime, most likely. It may, however, be a smoother transition. Like I said, though, either one should migrate all of your users to the new, AD domain. Sorry for missing that until now. Hope that helps.

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Upgrade Plan

by Wizard-09 In reply to PDC

This is the upgrade plan, how does it look to you does it look ok.

1. Ensure that we have a fully backed up copy of the PDC. (As a DRP)

2. Install the latest service pack(s) for the NT4 domain (Service Pack 5 / 6)

3. The update of service packs are required in order to upgrade the PDC.

4. Add the new 2003 server to the NT4 domain as a server.

5. Run DCPROMO on the newly installed 2003 server and make it a BDC.

6. Install 2003 on the NT4 PDC (This will also copy the SAM file/accounts)

7. Once we have the old PDC running 2003 replicate AD to the BDC.

8. Run DCPROMO on the BDC to now make it the DC.

9. Copy the FSMO to 2003 DC.

10. Hope and pray that it all goes to plan.

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Re: Upgrade plan

by christianshiflet In reply to Upgrade Plan

I take full responsibility for making this more confusing than it should be. I would not add the 2003 server to your existing domain until after you have upgraded your NT4 server to 2003/AD. So, my process would go:

1. Install SP5 & SP6 on the NT4 server
2. Ensure a good backup of the NT4 PDC (steps 1 & 2 can be swapped if you prefer, either order has its benefits)
3. Upgrade the NT4 server to 2003 using the inplace upgrade process
4. Add new 2003 server to the new AD domain as a member server
5. DCPROMO the new 2003 server to a secondary DC (replication should occur during this step)
6. DCPROMO again to make the new 2003 server the PDC, automatically demoting the old server to a secondary DC
7. Move all FSMO roles (5 total, I believe) to the new 2003 server
8. DCPROMO the old server to a member server (or leave it up as a backup for AD & DNS in the event you have to do maintenance on the new server some day)
9. Dance a jig

Of course, you should always verify things between steps to make sure that things are going as planned or what you expected to happen, actually happened. As for hoping and praying that everything goes as planned...

In all honesty, the time you are taking to research and ask questions now instead of during the process is the best thing you can do. Let me know if I can help or you have any questions. Thanks.

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by Wizard-09 In reply to Re: Upgrade plan

I was thinking the same upgrade the PDC 1st to 2003 AD then add the other 2003 as a BDC thanks for taking the time to help we work this out i will update you once its all completed to let you no how it went

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