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Re-Installing Windows 2003 on a single DC

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  • Re-Installing Windows 2003 on a single DC

    Hi all,

    I have the following configuration:
    Single domain controller with Windows 2003 Server Enterprise R2 SP2
    MS Exchange 2003
    45 Users in active directory.

    Recently i am facing several problems with DNS and decided to re-install every thing from scratch.

    I did a system state back up and Exchange backup using ntbackub.

    Now,

    1- Can I backup Active Directory only without the system state?

    2- Can I backup my user accounts information so that i would restore them after re-installation?

    3- If I re-install and restore users, will they be logging to their accounts seamlessly or am i gonna get problems and end-up re-assigning every user from start?

    4- What about Exchange 2003? will i be able to restore the mail boxes back with know hassle?

    5- Will I succeed re-installing W2k3 and restoring users to their working state the next day or you think i rather add another domain controller?


    Thanks to all.

  • #2
    Re: Re-Installing Windows 2003 on a single DC

    If you havent already nuked your installation, use EXMERGE to export all the Exchange data to PSTs as a reserve backup

    1) AD is only backed up as part of system state
    2) You can export all user account information with CSVDE
    3) Re-creating users will generate new SIDs so old profiles will be invalid. If you manage to reinstall AD you should find the accounts stay alright.
    4) Exchange on a DC is a very bad idea -- restoring it with a rebuild of the DC will probably only make it worse. Check out the \disasterrecovery switch IF you get AD up and running properly
    5) Crystal ball is off, so I have no idea if it will work OK

    What is the DNS problem and what have you done to fix it?
    IMHO, stop, think, DONT CHANGE ANYTHING YET!
    Tom Jones
    MCT, MCSE (2000:Security & 2003), MCSA:Security & Messaging, MCDBA, MCDST, MCITP(EA, EMA, SA, EDA, ES, CS), MCTS, MCP, Sec+
    PhD, MSc, FIAP, MIITT
    IT Trainer / Consultant
    Ossian Ltd
    Scotland

    ** Remember to give credit where credit is due and leave reputation points where appropriate **

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    • #3
      Re: Re-Installing Windows 2003 on a single DC

      Ossian, Thank u a million, your advice is highly appreciated.

      One thing though, you mentioned that MS ES on a DC is a bad idea, how would i install it? shall I make a separate server for MS Exchange?

      Thanks again.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Re-Installing Windows 2003 on a single DC

        They recommend having Exchange on a different server yes but I wouldn't say its the end of the world if you do have on your DC. Some companies don't have the money to buy another server and another copy of Windows Server. I mean hell, look at Small Business Server.

        If it was me I would make a Virtual PC of Windows 2003 and move all the information to that server then rebuild the other server and move it back again. Don't forget to replicate the Public Folders. This way your user and computer accounts are guaranteed to work. Exchange mail boxes will work. Outlook clients will reconfigure themselves to the new server.

        Anyway yeah if its a DNS issue I would look at fixing it as the above could be quite a big job.
        Please remember to leave positive reputation points (The Ying Yang Icon) if someone helps you.

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        • #5
          Re: Re-Installing Windows 2003 on a single DC

          Originally posted by liono View Post
          Ossian, Thank u a million, your advice is highly appreciated.

          One thing though, you mentioned that MS ES on a DC is a bad idea, how would i install it? shall I make a separate server for MS Exchange?

          Thanks again.

          Basically, although you can install Exchange on a DC, MS do not recommend it. Whatever you do, do NOT use DCPROMO to "un-DC" it as this will badly break Exchange.

          The best is Exchange on its own box, separate from the DC

          SBS is, of course, different, being tweaked to allow Exchange to work with all the other functionality.

          Tom
          Tom Jones
          MCT, MCSE (2000:Security & 2003), MCSA:Security & Messaging, MCDBA, MCDST, MCITP(EA, EMA, SA, EDA, ES, CS), MCTS, MCP, Sec+
          PhD, MSc, FIAP, MIITT
          IT Trainer / Consultant
          Ossian Ltd
          Scotland

          ** Remember to give credit where credit is due and leave reputation points where appropriate **

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Re-Installing Windows 2003 on a single DC

            Thank u all guys, your comments are very useful to me.

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