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Win 2000 Server and a PDC

By katn ·
We are running a NT server enviroment. 2 of our apps are iffy on 2000. We want to add a 2000 server as a domain controler and demote our NT 4 PDC to a BDC so we can take our time changing over. The 2000 server is a new machine. Can we add it as a DC after we demote our PDC to a BDC?

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by bwheel In reply to Win 2000 Server and a PDC

I don't think so, at least not without playing tricks. Here there are two options, rebuild an entire domain (usually quite a project) or my prefered one in this case is to build the New server as an NT4 BDC, then promote it to be the PDC. You can then upgrade the PDC (now the new machine), and it will become a new domain controller.

You will want to read these documents very carefully before deciding what is best for you.
(Domain Upgrades & Active Directory)
http://www.microsoft.com/windows2000/techinfo/planning/pds-cduadtoc.asp

I would suggest starting with this article, as it will outline the steps to upgrading the domain controller. (Upgrading a Windows NT Domain to Windows 2000 Active Directory):
http://www.microsoft.com/windows2000/techinfo/planning/incremental/upgradent.asp

Also though I have never used it, the Active Directory Migration Tool could need to be used to reorganize your Domain structure, if say you had a number of Domain Trusts in your organization.

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by katn In reply to

just as I thought.

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by timwalsh In reply to Win 2000 Server and a PDC

Unbreakable rules concerning Active Directory (AD):
1. A Win2K Domain Controller (DC) CANNOT exist in an NT4 domain.
2. An NT4 PDC CANNOT exist in a Win2K AD domain (but a BDC can).
3. To migrate an NT4 domain to a Win2K AD domain, you MUST install Win2K and AD on the NT4 PDC (will not work on a BDC).

If you break these rules, you will likely end up with a non-functional AD domain and a corrupted NT4 domain.

Having said all that it sounds like your problem is that your "iffy" apps are running on your PDC.

If this is the case, there is a way around your dilemma:
1. On your new machine, wipe the drive and install NT4 as a BDC.
2. Synchronize the new BDC with the current PDC.
3. Promote this BDC to PDC (which will demote your current PDC to BDC).
4. Follow the standard process for migrating NT4 to Win2K and AD using this new PDC.

This will allow your current PDC to continue to run your apps on NT as well as providing a backup to the DC for your domain.

NOTE: An NT4 BDC in a mixed-mode AD domain will only provide user authentication in the event the AD DC fails. The NT4 BDC cannot provide any AD-specific functions.

Hope this helps.

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by katn In reply to Win 2000 Server and a PDC

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