Restore Active Directory on SBS 2003 Server

Recently we migrated a customer from SBS 2003 to SBS 2011. During this the setup on the SBS 2011 crashed. The SBS 2011 server was connected to the domain and replicating however the setup crashed setting up IIS. In Microsofts infinit wisdom they didn’t create a method to restart the setup so you have to roll the SBS 2003 active directory using the system state backups you created before starting the migration. These are the steps we used to do that. It is a bit of a mishmash of a couple of different procedures.

  1. Backed up the current system state just in case we needed to roll back to where we were today.
  2. As the 03 server was still working we could log in however we inherited this server from another integrator so didn’t know the Directory Services Restore mode password so first we had to reset that
    1. Open a command prompt
    2. Enter the command ntdsutil and hit enter
    3. At the ntsdsutil: prompt enter set dsrm password
    4. At the Reset DSRM Administrator Password: prompt enter reset password on server null
    5. You will then be prompted to enter the new password and confirm it.
    6. Press q enter then q enter to exit ntdsutil
  3. Next we need to enter Directory Services Restore Mode. This is the same procedure as entering Safe Mode, mash f8 quickly when booting and when prompted instead of selecting Safe Mode Select Directory Services Restore Mode (Windows domain controllers only)
  4. When you get to the login prompt login using the username administrator and the password set previously
  5. Once logged in it just a matter of running the restore
    1. Start > All Programs > Accessories > System > Backup
    2. In the welcome tab select Restore Wizard (Advanced)
    3. Click Next
    4. In the left list box expand File then the backup you wish to restore finally tick the box next to the System State backup
    5. Click Next then Finish
    6. You will be warned that files will be overwritten, accept that and the files will be restored
    7. Once it is done reset the server and it should be good to go.

Further Reading and References