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How do we transfer user data from our NT4 PDC/BDC to a new Win2k server? And do we have to replace o

We are replacing our NT 4.0 primary domain controller (PDC) and backup domain controller (BDC) with a Dell server that is pre-loaded with Windows 2000. My questions are:

 

  1. How do we transfer all the user names and passwords to the new Win2k server?

     

  2. Do we have to use Active Directory if both servers are Win2k (same applies to question 3)?

     

  3. We used WINS on our old NT4 servers. Will this have to be replaced with AD and DNS?

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  1. That depends. You could upgrade the NT 4.0 PDC to Windows 2000 and then have the Dell machine join the domain as a domain controller. The Dell machine will then have all of the objects you want on it. Then you will have to move the FSMO (Flexible Single Master Operations) (see KB article Q255504, Using Ntdsutil.exe to seize or transfer FSMO roles to a domain controller). Also make sure that the Dell machine is a Global Catalog server (Active Directory sites).

    If you want to create a whole new domain, you could promote the Dell to be a DC in the new domain. Then establish a trust between the two domains. Then, using the ADMT available from Microsoft, you can transfer all of the user names, etc., from the NT domain to the Windows 2000 Active Directory.

     

  2. Well, if the two servers are the only servers in your whole company you could probably get away with having no domain at all and just maintain local accounts on the servers for the users. But if you need a domain on Win2k, it will need to be Active Directory.

     

  3. Windows 2000 machines don't use WINS except for backward compatibility. So whether you can get rid of WINS altogether depends on if you have other NT 4.0 servers or if the client machines are not Windows 2000 or XP. DNS will be a requirement for Active Directory.

This was first published in October 2002

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