Microsoft Servers, Microsoft Windows Server 2012, Microsoft Windows server 2016

Migrate active directory FSMO from windows server 2012 R2 to windows server 2016

Windows server 2016 was released for public (GA) on mid oct 2016. Its exciting time as businesses are already working on migrating their services in to new windows server 2016 infrastructures. In this post, I am going to explain how you can migrate from active directory running on windows server 2012 R2 to windows server 2016 active directory. The same steps are valid for migrating from windows server 2012, windows server 2008 R2 and windows server 2008.

In my demo setup, I have a windows server 2012 R2 domain controller as PDC. I setup windows server 2016 and already added to the existing domain.
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Current domain and forest functional level of the domain is windows server 2012 R2.
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So, let’s start with the migrate process.
Install Active Directory on windows server 2016

  1. Log in to windows server 2016 as domain administrator or enterprise administrator
  2. Check the IP address details and put the local host IP address as the primary DNS and another AD server as secondary DNS. This is because after AD install, server itself will act as DNS server
  3. Run servermanager.exe form PowerShell to open server manager (there is many ways to open it)
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  4. Then click on Add Roles and Features
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  5. It will open up the wizard, click next to continue
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  6. In next window keep the default and click next
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  7. Roles will be installed on same server, so leave the default selection and click next to continue
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  8. Under the server roles tick on Active Directory Domain Services, then it will prompt with the features needs for the role. Click on add features. Then click next to proceed
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  9. On the features windows keep the default and click next
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  10. In next window, it will give brief description about AD DS, click next to proceed
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  11. Then in next window it will give brief description about configuration and click on install to start the role installation process.
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  12. Once installation completed, click on promote this server to a domain controller option
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  13. It will open up the Active Directory Domain Service configuration wizard, leave the option Add a domain controller to existing domain selected and click next.
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  14. In next window define a DSRM password and click next
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  15. In next window click on next to proceed
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  16. In next windows, it asks from where to replicate domain information. You can select the specific server or leave it default. Once done click next to proceed.
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  17. Then it shows the paths for AD DS database, log files and SYSVOL folder. You can change the paths or leave default. In demo, I will keep default and click next to continue
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  18. In next windows, it will explain about preparation options. Since this is first windows server 2016 AD on the domain it will run forest and domain preparation task as part of the configuration process. Click next to proceed.
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  19. In next window, it will list down the options we selected. Click next to proceed.
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  20. Then it will run prerequisite check, if all good click on install to start the configuration process.
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  21. Once the installation completes it will restart the server.
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I assume by now you have idea what is FSMO roles. If not search my blog and you will find article explaining those roles.
There are 2 ways to move the FSMO roles from one AD server to another. One is using GUI and other one is using command line. I had already written articles about GUI method before so I am going to use PowerShell this time to move FSMO roles. If you like to use GUI mode search my blog and you will find articles on it.

1) Log in to windows server 2016 AD as enterprise administrator
2) Open up the Powershell as administrator. Then type netdom query fsmo. This will list down the FSMO roles and its current owner.
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3) In my demo, the windows server 2012 R2 DC server holds all 5 fsmo roles. Now to move fsmo roles over, type Move-ADDirectoryServerOperationMasterRole -Identity domainname-PDC01 -OperationMasterRole SchemaMaster, DomainNamingMaster, PDCEmulator, RIDMaster, InfrastructureMaster and press enter

In here domainame-PDC01 is the windows server 2016 DC. If FSMO roles are placed on different servers, you can migrate each and every FSMO roles to different servers.
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4) Once its completed, type netdom query fsmo again and you can see now its windows server 2016 DC is the new FSMO roles owner.
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Uninstall AD role from windows server 2012 R2

Now we moved FSMO roles but we still running system on windows 2012 R2 domain and forest functional levels. In order to upgrade it, first we need to decommission AD roles from existing windows server 2012 R2 servers.

1) Log in to windows 2012 R2 domain server as enterprise administrator
2) Open the PowerShell as administrator
3) Then type Uninstall-ADDSDomainController -DemoteOperationMasterRole -RemoveApplicationPartition and press enter. It will ask for local administrator password. provide new password for local administrator and press enter.
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4) Once its completed it will restart the server.

Upgrade the forest and domain functional levels to windows server 2016

Now we have the windows server 2012 R2 domain controllers demoted, next step is to upgrade domain and forest functional levels.

1) Log in to windows server 2016 DC as enterprise administrator
2) Open PowerShell as administrator
3) Then type Set-ADDomainMode –identity domain-name.local -DomainMode Windows2016Domain to upgrade domain functional level to windows server 2016. In here domain-name.local is the domain name.
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4) Then type Set-ADForestMode -Identity rebeladmin.net -ForestMode Windows2016Forest to upgrade forest functional level.
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5) Once done you can run Get-ADDomain | fl Name,DomainMode and Get-ADForest | fl Name,ForestMode to confirm new domain and functional level
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Hope this post was useful..!! Enjoy..!!