Simplify Your Environment
After documenting your environment and before proceeding to the migration plan itself, you need to answer the following critical questions:
Even if your existing hardware meets the minimum published requirements for Windows Server 2003, you should still verify migration readiness. Microsoft is notorious for underestimating the hardware configuration requirements. To check your PDCs/BDCs for 2003 readiness, enter the command winnnt32/checkupgradeonly at the console prompt. Note that by default the results are saved to upgrade.txt in the systemroot directory.
Be aware of two important caveats before proceeding. This capability is only available after installing Windows NT Service Pack 5 or later, and the server will not be able to perform its PDC/BDC role during the readiness check.
Use the Windows Application Compatibility Toolkit (currently version 3.0) to evaluate application migration readiness. This handy utility contains three very useful applications.
Microsoft Compatibility Analyzer – An application that will perform a software inventory that is stored in an Access or SQL Server database. It can also sort by various fields such as application, department name, or computer type.To make the migration easier, you may want to consider using the project as an opportunity to consolidate and retire older hardware and legacy applications. If you are contemplating this, keep the following points in mind:
Compatibility Administrator – For custom applications, the analyzer can determine exactly what fixes are needed to upgrade a given application. It will then create software packages with the required patches. It also has the capability to create a custom fix database. Compatibility Database Installer can then be used for custom patch installs.
Windows Application Verifier – In-house developers can use the verifier to probe for potential migration problems with home-grown applications. Since many in-house applications are not as carefully built for portability as commercial software, this can be a real lifesaver. This will be especially useful for those converting older Windows 9x applications.