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Whats raise domain functional level do?

Discussion in 'Windows Server 2003 / 2008 / 2012 Exams' started by beaumontdvd, Feb 18, 2010.

  1. beaumontdvd

    beaumontdvd Kilobyte Poster

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    Hi all, I'm playing about with server 03, and would like to know what raise domain functional level means and what are the benefits of using it ect.

    I used it in AD Domain and trusts and raised it from 2000 to 2003?

    Hope you can advise,

    Dave
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2010
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  2. SimonD

    SimonD Terabyte Poster Moderator

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    It's basically aimed at the differences in versions of Active Directory. You may find that you have various DC's in your company, if they are a mix of 2000 and 2003 then you would be using mixed mode, if you then migrate all the 2000 DC's to 2003 DC's you would promote the AD to 2003 Native, the same thing would happen when you started installing 2008 DC's into a 2003 based domain, you would raise the functional level to 2008 but it would still be working in mixed mode, when you upgraded all DC's to 2008 you would then change it to 2008 Native.
     
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  3. beaumontdvd

    beaumontdvd Kilobyte Poster

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    Oh I understand now, thanks, but say we upgraded three dc's from 2000 to 2003 would you raise the domain functional levels on all three dc's to 2003? Or could you do it on one because I read somehwere that the if theres more than one dc they have copies of AD?

    Also say there was three dcs and I had upgraded two of them from 2003 - 2008 what would I do as when I just changed the domain functional level the highest I could go was 2003? I guess thats because the OS im running is only 2003?



    Regards,
    Dave
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2010
    Certifications: 070-271, 070-272, (MCDST)Level 1,2,3 NVQ
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  4. wagnerk
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    wagnerk aka kitkatninja Moderator

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    Like SimonD already stated, there are different versions of AD. By raising the domain functional level you get to take advantage of new features in AD, for example if you raise the domain functional level from 2000 to 2003 you get to use features like directory-enabled applications, if you raise the domain functional level from 2003 to 2008 you get to implement multiple password policys (on OU's instead of just at domain level). If you raise 2008 to 2008 R2 you get things like the recycle bin for AD.

    However be aware that this is a one way process and just because you are running all servers at a particular version doesn't mean that you have to raise the domain functional level. Certain hardware and software applications depend on a certain version of AD and will not function properly, install or may not even work at all (recent things: Exchange 2007 on Windows 2008 r2 server & domain, up until recently Sophos WS1000 Hardware applicance on Windows 2008 R2 domain, etc...).

    You can see AD improvements for 2003 over 2000 here and 2008 (r2) over 2003 here.

    You'd only do this once per domain, this will be replicated across all domain controllers within that domain.

    Yes, you would have to leave the domain functional functional level at 2003 until all DC's were 2008. Once you raise the domain functional level to 2008, you will not be able to install any more 2003 DC's within that domain, however you can still install member servers that run 2003.

    -Ken
     
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  5. beaumontdvd

    beaumontdvd Kilobyte Poster

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    Thanks a lot mate, I understand that fully now. Thanks!
    Just getting to grips with server 2003 only really been using it just over a week. Theres so many differnt things you can do with it :twisted:.

    Cheers again for going out your way with such a good reply

    Dave
     
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