Advice on migration from SBS 2003 to Windows server 2012 R2 Essentials

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    Hi all,

    I need some advice about migrating to Win Server 2012 R2 Essentials. I’ve never done something like this before and want to be very sure I’m not doing something stupid or in the wrong order.

    Source server:
    Small Business server 2003 w/ Exchange 2003, DNS, DHCP, 2 NICs, 1st to fixed IP adress from ISP, 2nd to internal network switch.
    The source server has been prepared for migration to the best of my knowledge: functional level raised, health check performed without issues.

    Email has already been moved to Office 365, Exchange on source server is not delivering mail anymore.

    The steps I plan to follow are these:
    1. Add Win server 2012 to existing domain as replica domain controller (
    2. Add DNS and DHCP roles to server 2012, copy DHCP database from 2003 to 2012
    3. Set up print server on 2012
    4. Copy files to 2012
    5. Set up shares on 2012 using group policy
    6. Install necessary 3rd party applications to 2012
    7. Transfer FSMO roles to 2012
    8. Shut down 2003
    9. Connect 1st NIC on 2012 to ISP static ip connection, give it the same ip as on 2003
    10. Connect 2nd NIC to network switch
    11. Authorize DHCP on 2012
    12. Connect client computers

    Regarding the last step of connecting client computers, I read in the MS guidelines: “Before you can join a client computer to the new Windows Server 2012 R2 Essentials server, you must disconnect it from the Source Server by uninstalling the Windows Server Connector software on the client computer.”
    But I can’t find any such software on our Windows 7 clients. How do I disconnect the cliet computers from SBS 2003 and join them to the new server without losing the local user profiles? Is is enough to use Internet Explorer with the address http:///Connect?

    Are there any obvious mistakes in my plan and steps?
    I would be very grateful for any advice!


    Hahhaha! Ooooops….just created a similar thread but from SBS2008 not 2003

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