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Setup New Server 2016 DC in a Server 2003 Domain

I'm in the process of removing an old physical server that is acting as our AD server running Server 2003 R2 Standard.  Plan is to setup a VMware VM running Server 2016 Standard and setup as a new DC with global catalog and DNS.  I will then transfer all FSMO roles to this new server before I dcpromo the old server and retire.  The domain and forest functional level is currently set to Server 2003.  


Question is if I can proceed as planned and add a new Server 2016 DC to a legacy Server 2003 domain?  Thanks for any input.

Ken Sheppard Ken Sheppard
Published 11/23/2018 16:32
  • Windows Server 2016 Standard
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Mariette Knap

Hello Ken,

As SBS 2003 R2 is based on Windows Server R2 I don't see a problem because I have many of these migrations. Just install 2016 and promote it to a replica as described in Migrate from SBS 2003 R2 Premium to Windows Server 2016 Essentials. Make sure you check for Journal Wrap issues in the FRS log before you introduce the new DC

replied 11/23/2018 16:46
Ken Sheppard

Thanks, Mariette.  I will review your guide.  The domain is healthy and I have already run the necessary domain checks.


This old server also hosts the DFS Namespace and Shares.  I setup a new Dell NAS running Storage Server 2016 and joined the DFS and replicated the shares as new targets.

replied 11/23/2018 16:57
Last Activity 12/11/2018 06:06