Migrating a file server workload from Server 2003 to Server 2012 R2 requires a bit more than simply copying the files from the computer running Server 2003 to the computer running Server 2012 R2. As I mentioned in the last post, you need to keep in mind:
- Share permissions
- File and folder permissions
- File screens
Depending on your configuration and the way that people use files, you may even need to consider things such as auditing, deduplication, file and folder compression, and EFS encryption.
There are at least two methods you can use to copy files and folders from the source computer to the destination computer. You can:
- Use a backup application to back up the source folder structure and then restore the folder structure on the destination computer. This will ensure that you retain the file and folder permissions. Generally speaking, it won’t retain the share permissions.
- Use a utility such as robocopy.exe with the /copyall switch. This will not only copy the files, but also copy attributes, timestamps, security permissions, owner and auditing information. When copying, ensure that the destination volume is formatted with the NTFS file system.
Share permissions are a little more complicated. The export procedure is covered in KB article 125996, which you can read here. http://support.microsoft.com/kb/125996. Basically it involves ensuring that the source folder path and the destination folder path are the same. You then run the following command on the source server to export the share names, paths, and security settings:
reg export HKLM\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\LanmanServer\Shares c:\share-permissions.reg
You then import the permissions using the command:
reg import share-permissions.reg
If you want to minimize confusion and the need to reconfigure share locations in scripts and home directories, you might choose to configure the new Server running 2012 R2 with the same name as the source 2003 server. When doing this, you’ll need to include a step where you rename the source and destination servers so that the 2012 R2 server ends up with the name of the 2003 source server.
You can find out more about migrating file servers from Server 2003 to Server 2012 R2 at the following link: http://blogs.technet.com/b/josebda/archive/2014/11/05/migrating-file-server-from-windows-server-2003-to-windows-server-2012-r2.aspx