Thanks to All Or How I saved my AD
From: Yor Suiris (yor_at_hallgroupNOT.net)
Date: Tue, 22 Jun 2004 17:17:58 -0400
First I want to thank everyone who helped me out in the last week or so I
could not have done it with out your guidance. And second I thought I would
post my solution for any one else who has or may have the same problem.
Due To Problems on the Old Exchange Server, i.e. lack of hard disk
space and a failed install of Internet Explorer 6, the machine required a
Do a full system backup, including Mail Boxes and System State.
As this machine was a DC I Transfer FMSO Roles for Active
Directory to other Domain Controllers (MS doc #255504). Format hard drives
and do rebuild of Windows 2000 Server and Service Packs. Install Internet
Explorer 5.5, Backup Exec, Diskkeeper and McAfee.
Do System State restore from Backup for June 11. Transfer the FMSO Roles
back to it. Do another full Backup, including System State.
Do Exchange Disaster Recovery as per Microsoft Documents #263532,
#313184 and Online Book Disaster Recovery for Microsoft Exchange Server
Do full Backup, including System State from June 11.
Copy Private Information Store (Mailboxes) and Public Information
Store from Backup of June 11th. But Exchange was unable to Mount
Databases. Please Note: at this point Exchange was Receiving Messages and
holding them in the Queues awaiting Mailboxes to send them to. All my
configuration info was recovered such as deny lists and FQN and SmartHost. I
thought Great as I was afraid I would have to re-enter. Especially the deny
list which had hundreds of entries.
I just could not mount the data bases. (also note I had just done four
12 hour days at this point and my brain was not quite 100%) According to the
Microsoft Document # 313184, the solution was:
1, Do a Restore from Backup Tape, (No Data Loss). Note I had just Copied the
2. Do a Repair, MS Doc #301438, (Some Data Loss).
3. Create New Data Base, (All data gone).
Now at this point enters a "Consultant", Steve. We had recently gone through
a Corporate merger and the new Partner who was unsure of my ability wanted
his trusted Consultant whom he had relied on in the past to check thing out.
So I explain the situation to him. Show him my collection of backup tapes
and let him poke around. At one point I notice him making elementary
mistakes when entering things from the command line, (like not using
"Quotes" around paths that contain spaces).
So he comes back to me and declares that the whole Exchange setup needs
a "Fresh New Install" and he has yet to ask me which backup tape he should
use. I say No way, a "reinstall" would be a better first step. Well a little
while later he is asking me for all kinds of setup info, like FQN, SmartHost
DNS, etc., etc., and when I check, because all that info was there a while
ago. I see that he did do a Fresh Second Install of Exchange. And I am
receiving complaints from all over the network about all kinds of problems.
Upon checking I see that we now have duplicate entries in the Active
Directory for Exchange Services (system mailboxes, etc.,) and the current
machine as well licensing. Damn!
So I shut down the machine and remove it from the system. Try MS Doc #
216498 & #260378 as well as # 255504 again. And I manage to stabilize the
network so people can work. But No email.
The consultant declares that the problem was with my network and AD
setup (which had been working for almost three years before he showed up)
and tells the Boss we have to Rebuild Everything and give him lots of money
to do it.
Well the boss by now suspects my ability and "they" start planning.
Mean While I ignore the Boss and the consultant grab an old server they
wanted me to throw out because people thought my work area looked like a
computer grave yard, and install fresh software. I go through the restore
process on the Exchange server again bringing it back to a system state of
June 11 before Steve. Set it up as a stand alone, i.e. seize the FMSO roles,
use the metabase Cleanup and MS doc 216498, then setup DNS so I can get it
work by itself. Now my old server I do a Dcpromo and join it to my restored
Exchange server which I was lucky to have lots of backups of and also that
it was a DC. I transfer the FMSO Roles and DNS to the old server now called
On the production Network I take one DC at a time and do a Dcpromo. Move it
to the restored network and do Dcpromo to make it a AD DC on my restored
network with my original Exchange setup info. Then do a Dcpromo on \\testdc.
and before I remove the last DC from the production network I disjoin
\\testdc from the restored network and join it to the production network and
transfer all roles to it as well as DNS & DHCP. So the whole office is
running off this one old server for about a day. I remove the last
production DC and join it to my restore AD network. Then balance out my New
Network. Then Friday night, while the bosses still have not decided what to
do, I shut do the production network, rearrange some plug on the server room
patch panel. Reboot the whole system. And we have Mail!
Ok a few services and problems to sort out. Have to edit the logon scripts
and I have not yet been able to mount the Public store and I have messed up
my terminal License server with the changes. But these are nothing compared
to what the "consultant" wanted to do.
I hope this might help others who may have listened to a "Consultant".
And once more I can not thank you all enough for the help.......yor