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Author Topic: Moving Server 2008R2 to new hardware while keeping the current configuration  (Read 2589 times)


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  • Fighting Slime all the Time
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Please consider that there is no such thing as a stupid question because this sounds like it qualifies as one . :-[

If someone has ever managed to get something like this to work, I would appreciate just knowing it is possible.  Or Not.  But please, no need to tell me this is not a normal setup as I knew that when I first saw it.  But I am told it has worked like it is since before I got here and I would like to keep it working for as long as I can.

Trying to convince them to do the right thing is not an option.  They don't have the funds for a Dell PowerEdge Server.  I only mention this because I know this is not the way it was meant to be, but this is a small 'Mom & Pop" setup.   They only want to keep what they have working but I do not want to shop on Ebay for used components.

It is running a Server OS only because of a single SQL program that was custom written for them originally on Server 2000.    The OS was upgraded once to 2008-R2 before the company that wrote the software was no longer around
The system has no other roles, does not use AD nor a Domain.

Lately the old system is producing too many hardware faults and I would like to migrate the whole setup to a more "modern" hardware configuration, but this "server" was originally built on what I would consider a normal Desktop computer with a dual core AMD processor, not a real 'Server' system.   But it only has to run that one SQL program and no other server roles.

If it keeps doing the only task it has done reliably and is never used for anything else,  that is all it has to do.  If I could "move"  this whole configuration onto a new Intel I7 with 32GB of RAM it would solve any hardware glitches and probably last longer than the need for it.  They cannot afford to replace it with a "Real Server"  need but I can get a new I-7 System for not much money.   I can also clone the working setup on another drive but I have never done such  with a Server OS and transitioning from an AMD based system to an Intel architecture may not be possible using a cloned installation.

Before I waste a lot of time trying to do the impossible and was wondering if anyone had ever done so successfully.

Stoic Joker

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Just Kidding - Yes I've done this type of thing before.

I used Windows Backup to do a Bare Metal Restore backup, then booted to the Windows install disk to do the recovery. In my case The disk configuration was changing because we were taking their single disk (single) domain controller and moving it to a RAID array. So some finagling had to be done with the boot configuration.

If you have boot issues after doing the restore, the below is from my notes on what was required to get the above box running. Not all of it is required in every situation, but much of it is documented (online) incorrectly.

MS Boot Configuration Data Editor (option 1)
For When Boot Fails Because the OS is Missing!
The following procedure is used to completely rebuild the Windows Vista, 7, 2008 boot configuration when it has either been badly damaged, or when restoring the OS to different hardware with a different disk/partition configuration.
1.   Boot from appropriate OS media.
2.   Select the current Windows installation if available.
3.   Choose Command Prompt and run the below commands (some may be optional):
bootrec.exe /fixmbr
bootrec.exe /fixboot
bootsect.exe /nt60 all /force
attrib -s -h -r C:\boot\BDC
del C:\boot\BCD
bootrec.exe /RebuildBcd
bcdboot.exe C:\Windows /S C: /L en-us

(this is worth checking)
Diskpart can also be used to mark a partition as active from the Windows RE.
SELECT DISK (followed by the number of the disk – most likely 0)
SELECT PARTITION (followed by the partition number – most likely 0)
                         Windows startup recovery should now work (option 2).