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Overview of Upgrading Your Windows 2000 Domains to Windows Server 2003 Domains

By upgrading your network operating system from Microsoft® Windows® 2000 Server to the Microsoft® Windows® Server 2003, Standard Edition; Windows® Server 2003, Enterprise Edition; or Windows® Server 2003, Datacenter Edition operating system, you can maintain your current network and domain configuration while improving the security, scalability, and manageability of your network infrastructure.

Prior to upgrading your Windows 2000 domains, review your business objectives and decide how they relate to your existing Active Directory infrastructure. Although your objectives might not require other significant changes to your existing environment, the operating system upgrade is an opportune time to review your existing Active Directory design, including your Active Directory logical structure, site topology, and domain controller capacity. You might find opportunities for increased efficiencies and cost savings that you can incorporate into your upgrade process.

Additionally, ensure that you test your upgrade process in a lab and pilot program. For more information about lab testing and piloting, see "Planning an Active Directory Deployment Project" in this book.

When the domain upgrade process is complete, all domain controllers will be running Windows Server 2003, and the Active Directory domain and forest will be operating at the Windows Server 2003 functional level. At the Windows Server 2003 forest functional level, you can take advantage of all advanced Active Directory features. For more information about advanced Active Directory features related to Active Directory functional levels, see "Enabling Advanced Windows Server 2003 Active Directory Features" in this book.

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