Tell me more about migration

Applies To: Windows SBS 2008

Migration is the process of installing Windows SBS 2008 on a new computer, joining the new computer to your Active Directory domain, and then transferring data and settings from the old computer to the new computer.

Migration occurs in three phases: the preparation phase, the setup phase, and the transfer data and settings phase.

The preparation phase

Before you start the migration process, you must ensure that your network and source server are ready for migration by performing the following tasks:

  • Back up the source server

  • Verify the network configuration

  • Evaluate the health of the source server

  • Install the most recent service packs and fixes

  • Update the Active Directory schema

  • Create a migration answer file that is used to start the migration process

The installation phase

The migration process starts when a migration answer file on a USB flash drive or on the root of any available hard disk drive is detected. When Windows SBS 2008 installation runs in migration mode, the values in the migration answer file are used to populate the pages. The operating system and server applications are installed, and then the new server joins your Active Directory domain.

The transfer data and settings phase

After the Windows SBS 2008 installation completes, the Migration Wizard helps you continue the migration process that you started during installation. The Migration Wizard helps you complete both required and optional tasks for transferring data and settings.


You must complete the migration process within 21 days of the date that your Windows SBS 2008 installation finished.