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Active Directory, Second Edition by Alistair G. Lowe-Norris, Robbie Allen

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Upgrade Process

The upgrade process to Windows Server 2003 should be straightforward for most deployments. No forest restructuring is required, no user profile or workstation changes are necessary assuming you are running the latest service pack and hotfixes, and there should be no need for political turf battles over namespace usage and ownership like there might have been with Windows 2000.

We are going to outline five high-level steps that you should follow to upgrade to Windows Server 2003. They include performing an inventory of your domain controllers and clients to determine if there will be any compatibility showstoppers. You are then ready to do a trial run and perform extensive testing to see what impact the upgrade may have on functionality. Next, you have to prepare your forest and domains with ADPrep, which we’ve already discussed in some depth. Finally, you’ll upgrade your domain controllers to Windows Server 2003. In Section 14.6, we will describe what to do after you’ve upgraded your domain controllers as far as monitoring, raising functional levels, and taking advantage of new features goes.

Inventory Domain Controllers

A good first step before you start the upgrade process is to do a complete inventory of all of the hardware and software that is on your domain controllers. You’ll then want to contact your vendors to determine whether they’ve already done compatibility testing and can verify support for Windows Server 2003. The last thing you want to do is start the ...

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