I want to move all the domain information from a windows 2000 server to a windows 2003 server (they are separate machines) and then promote the windows 2003 server as the primary domain controller. Is there an easy way for this?

If possible make windows 2000 server as the backup domain controller.


Last time I did a migration, I used this guide to make sure I won't forget anything.

How to Migrate Windows server 2000 to Windows server 2003 Step By Step Tutorial

A Windows 2000 server domain controller running on old hardware has to be replaced with a new hardware running Windows 2003 Server as the Domain Controller. This tutorial will explain how to migrate win server 2000 to win server 2003 includes Domain Controller, DNS, DHCP, File server, Rename new win server 2003 same as your old win server 2000.

You can also check this :

Common Mistakes When Upgrading a Windows 2000 Domain To a Windows 2003 Domain

  • that's really complete I'm half way there now following that and article pointed out by sam, both were helpful – saint Jul 25 '09 at 8:21

To add a 2003 server as a domain controller in a 2000 Forest you need to run ADPrep to prepare the domain for 2003. There is a good article here on the steps to do this.

Once you have done this you can run dcpromo on the 2003 server to promote it to a domain controller.

As of 2000 and newer there is not such thing as a backup domain controllers, they are all multi-master, however there are a number of FSMO roles that must reside on on server or another, and you may wish to move these to your 2003 server, or split them between the two. This article describes each role, and how to move them to another server.

Once that is done you will then have 2 Domain Controllers in your domain.

  • I'm actually doing it right now, so will do it and mark your answer. thnks – saint Jul 24 '09 at 11:28

Not done it for a while, but there is a tool you need to run on the domain first to update the schema (i cant remember its name), then you can run a 2003 server and a 2000 in your domain in what is know as 'mixed mode'.

I think you can transfer most of the roles between the 2 while in mixed mode, once you have gotten rid of all your 2000 boxes you can then make your domain a native 2003 domain.

Since windows 2000 there's not really been a 'backup domain controller' concept, as 2000 server and above domains are multi master

A quick look on technet should point you in the direction of the tools and procedures

  • have been reading through technet, got a bit confused that's why I thought I'd ask here. I thought there would be an official guide of some what for this. Oh well, will check and find that. thanks – saint Jul 24 '09 at 10:44

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