How to Transfer DHCP DNS and an Active Directory to a New Server


Migrating Active Directory and its associated domain-name system and dynamic host-configuration protocol servers from old to new hardware is a complicated process that can take several hours to execute. Windows Server 2008 provides a program called dcpromo to facilitate the migration process. Dcpromo creates a new domain controller in the forest and replicates the settings of the old domain controller. After running dcpromo, you must manually transfer the DNS and DHCP configuration data.

  • Click "Start," then "Run." Type "dcpromo.exe" into the dialog box and then press "Enter" to run the Active Directory Domain Services Installation Wizard.

  • Check "Use Advanced Mode Installation" and then click "Next." Click "Next" again.

  • Click "Existing Forest" on the Choose a Deployment Configuration screen, then "Add a Domain Controller to an Existing Domain."

  • Enter the domain name associated with the appropriate server. Click "My Current Logged on Credentials," or click "Alternate Credentials" and enter the administrative login for the account. Click "Set." Click "Next."

  • Enter login details for a member of the enterprise administrators or domain administrators group. Click "Next."

  • Select the destination domain and click "Next." Select a site for the new domain controller and click "Next."

  • Check "DNS Server" and then click "Next." Click "Replicate Data Over the Network from an Existing Domain Controller." Click "Next."

  • Click "Use This Specific Domain Controller" and then select the source server. Click "Next."

  • Enter the destination folders for the database, log and SYSVOL files, or use the default folders. Click "Next."

  • Create a password for the administrative account to be used when starting the domain controller from Directory Services Restore Mode and click "Next." Review your selections and click "Next" again.

  • Click "Finish" to migrate the domain controller to the destination server.

  • Sign onto the source server. Open Command Prompt and run "dnscmd /EnlistDirectoryPartition" to determine which partitions are running on the source and target servers.

  • Input the following commands into Command Prompt to prepare DNS migration:

    net stop "DNS SERVER"
    dnscmd /EnlistDirectoryPartition
    reg export HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\DNS\Paraments C:\Windows\System32\DNS\service.REG
    reg export "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\DNS Server" C:\Windows\System32\DNS\software.REG
    xcopy c:\windows\system32\dns <target> /s
    net start "DNS SERVER"

    Replace "<target>" with the full file path linking to the network share or removable storage device. Press "Enter" after each command.

  • Sign onto destination server. Open Command Prompt and run the following command:

    net stop "DNS SERVER"

  • Transfer the files from the network share or removable storage device to c:\windows\system32\DNS. Double-click the REG files to register the data stored to each file.

  • Return to Command Prompt and run the following on the source server:

    net start "DNS SERVER"

  • Open Windows PowerShell and input the following commands, pressing "Enter" after each:

    Stop-Service DHCPserver
    Add-PSSnapin Microsoft.Windows.ServerManager.Migration

  • Run the command "Export-SmigServerSetting" without quotes to populate the DHCP server data and create a svrmig.mig file.

  • Run "Export-SmigServerSetting -featureID DHCP -User All -Group -IPConfig -path <storage> -Verbose" -- without quotes -- in PowerShell. Replace "<storage>" with the file path linking to a network share or removable storage device.

  • Input the following to remove DHCP authorization from the source server:

    netsh DHCP delete server <fqdn> <address>

    Replace "<fqdn>" with the fully qualified domain name associated with the source server, and "<address>" with the server IP address.

  • Open PowerShell on the destination server and run the following command:

    -featureid DHCP -User All -Group -IPConfig <type>
    -SourcePhysicalAddress <source adapter 1>,<source adapter 2>
    -TargetPhysicalAddress <destination adapter 1>,<destination adapter 2>
    -Force -path <storage> -Verbose

  • Replace "<type>" with All, Global or NIC. Global imports Windows IP settings, NIC imports IP settings for specific network adapters, All imports IP settings for both network adapter and Windows IP settings. Replace "<source adapter 1>" with the media access address associated with the first source network adapter; replace <destination adapter 1>" with the media access address associated with the first destination adapter. Commas separate each subsequent adapter.

  • Input the following commands after migrating the IP configurations:

    Start-Service DHCPServer
    netsh DHCP add server <fqdn> <address>

    Replace "<fqdn>" with the hostname of the destination server, and "<address>" with the server IP.

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