Practically Painless NT to Windows Server 2003 Migration: Implementation and Beyond - Page 3

 By Hallett German
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Post-Implementation Considerations

Once you have navigated the unsettled waters of the migration, you are not quite done yet. Inevitably, some things will go awry during the implementation “shakeout” period when you and your users are getting used to the new scheme and systems. If you adhere to the following pointers, you will minimize the unavoidable disruptions.

  • Determine early on a baseline of what is considered “normal operations.” This will help you when outages and possible security intrusions occur
  • Start a knowledge base of typical problems that manifest
  • Continuously scan your event logs and evaluate your monitoring effectiveness. This is especially important for replication. You may well be able to eliminate potential problems before they happen
  • Use the Resource Toolkit utility repadmin to monitor replication health. Some of the options include:
    • showreps, which shows replication for a particular domain controller
    • bind, which shows supported replication options
    • propcheck, which shows if a server is current for a particular directory record
  • Never stop your continuous improvement efforts:
    • Evaluate the addition of software capabilities in terms of whether they make business and operational sense
    • Keep network, group, and other related documentation up to date
    • Review security policies on a regular basis
    • Evaluate emerging Internet standards and lobby Microsoft if you want to see these standards incorporated into their products


As you can see, Windows NT to 2003 migrations are serious business, but they are not impossible. If you take the time to do thorough research and planning, you will be fully prepared for the inevitable mishaps. By taking full advantage of the myriad of Microsoft and third-party tools available, you can truly make your migration project as smooth and painless as our intrepid Jennie York.

Additional Resources

Active Directory
Official Microsoft Active Directory Site
Lots of great information and software utilities.

Active Directory Operations Guide
“In the trenches” advice to get you started administering Active Directory. There are many other planning and deploying guides on the Microsoft AD web site as well.

Windows Step-by-Step Guides
Step-by-step guides for performing many Active Directory operations.

Active Directory Sizer Tool
Download and overview of the tool.

Active Directory Sizer Tool Demo
Additional links for the Active Directory Sizer tool, including a demo for Windows Server 2003.

Migration Suite Vendors

Windows Server 2003/Migration
Windows Server 2003 Resources including Active Directory
ADMT web site and third party migration tools
Microsoft Knowledge Base - ADMT Article


news://microsoft.public.security – Security issues across Microsoft products.
news://microsoft.public.win2000.active_directory – General and technical Active Directory questions.
news://microsoft.public.win2000.setup_deployment – Deployment and implementation questions. Just starting to include Windows Server 2003 information.

Beth Cohen is president of Luth Computer Specialists, Inc., a consulting practice specializing in IT infrastructure for smaller companies. She has been in the trenches supporting company IT infrastructure for over 20 years in a number of different fields including architecture, construction, engineering, software, telecommunications, and research. She is currently consulting, teaching college IT courses, and writing a book about IT for the small enterprise.

Hallett German is an IT consultant who will soon launch Alessea Consulting, a company focusing on network identity and electronic directories/messaging consulting. He has twenty years experience in a variety of IT positions and in implementing stable infrastructures. He is the founder of the Northeast SAS Users Group and former President of the REXX Language Association. Hal is the author of three books on scripting languages. He is always on the lookout for challenging opportunities that will expand his directory, networking, and security skills.

» See All Articles by Columnists Beth Cohen and Hallett German

This article was originally published on Sep 10, 2003
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