Remote Desktop Services Migration Overview: Preparing to Migrate

Applies To: Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2008 R2

This topic contains instructions for preparing for the migration of the Remote Desktop Services role services from a Windows Server 2008 or Windows Server 2008 R2 source server to a Windows Server 2008 R2 destination server. It assumes that you are migrating some or all of the role services from a functional deployment of Remote Desktop Services or Terminal Services, including dependencies.

General preparation instructions are included for each of the following role services in Remote Desktop Services.

  • RD Session Host

  • RD Virtualization Host

  • RD Connection Broker

  • RD Web Access

  • RD Licensing

  • RD Gateway

Preparing to migrate the Remote Desktop Services role services

Assign permissions required to migrate Remote Desktop Services

At a minimum, you must be a member of the Administrators group on both the source and destination servers to install, remove, or set up Remote Desktop Services.

Migrate dependencies

Remote Desktop Services role services have dependencies or prerequisites as described in this section.

Prerequisites to be migrated separately

The following Remote Desktop Services deployment prerequisites must be migrated separately:

Prerequisite features already installed

The following Remote Desktop Services role services have prerequisite Windows Server 2008 R2 roles and features. With the exception of NAP, these prerequisites are installed automatically when the role service is installed if they are not already installed on the server.

  • RD Web Access requires Web Server (IIS)

  • RD Virtualization Host requires Hyper-V

  • RD Gateway requires Web Server (IIS), RPC over HTTP Proxy, Network Policy and Access Services (NAP)

Preparing servers for migration

Prepare your source server for migration

To prepare your source server for migration, you need to back it up and gather data.

Back up your source server

Some Remote Desktop Services role services require backup. For example, migrating some Remote Desktop Services role services require import or export of registry settings. You should back up the computer before working with the registry.

You can find information about backing up Windows Server 2008 and Windows Server 2008 R2 in the following topics:

Gather data from your source server

Record the data that you will migrate from the source server onto the data collection worksheet for each role service. You can find the data worksheets in Appendix A for most of the role services in the migration guide, with instructions in the guide itself for the information you need to record.

Settings for applications on the Remote Desktop Session Host server will not be gathered or recorded during this migration. Gather and record any data you wish to preserve before retiring the RD Session Host server.

Prepare your destination server

The following steps are necessary to prepare all destination servers for migration of Remote Desktop Services role services.

Hardware requirements for the destination server

Verify that the role service meets the hardware requirements for the role service and its prerequisites. Minimally you should migrate to servers with comparable memory, disk space, processors, and GPUs.

For more information about determining hardware requirements for Remote Desktop Services, download the IPD Guide for Windows Server 2008 R2 Remote Desktop Services (

The RD Virtualization Host server must meet the hardware requirements for the Hyper-V server role. For more information about Hyper-V hardware requirements, see Hardware Considerations (

RD Session Host, RD Web Access, and RD Virtualization Host cannot run on virtual computers.

Software requirements for the destination server

Remote Desktop Services is a server role in Windows Server 2008 R2. Windows Server 2008 R2 must be installed on the destination server before migrating any of the Remote Desktop Services role services.

The RD Session Host, RD Virtualization Host, RD Connection Broker, and RD Web Access servers require that the name of the destination server be the same as the name of the source server. The process for naming the servers varies by role service. For instructions about installing Windows Server 2008 R2 on the destination server, see the topic “Preparing to Migrate” for each role service.

Prepare other computers (servers and clients) in the enterprise

Preparations on other computers in the enterprise depend on which Remote Desktop Services role services are being migrated. Within the domain, as long as the destination server has the same name as the source server, no preparations are needed on other computers in the deployment.

To migrate across domains, RD Session Host, RD Virtualization Host, RD Connection Broker, and RD Web Access must have an account with permissions to join a new domain. When migrating RD Gateway and Remote Desktop license servers across domains, domain trust relationships are required.

Prepare certificates

Certificates are used for many Remote Desktop Services features. For information about migrating certificates, see Remote Desktop Services Migration Overview: Migrating Certificates.

See also