Windows server 2003 to 2008: upgrade considerations

If you are planning to upgrade from Windows server 2003 to 2008, here are some
  •  The normal boot-from-CD procedure doesnt work for the upgrade.You will have to start the upgrade process from within the windows server 2003
  • You can upgrade to an equalent or higher edition of windows server 2008 ie you can upgrade from from windows server 2003 standard edition to server 2008 standard or Enterprise edition, but you cannot upgrade from 2003 Enterprise edition to 2008 standard edition
  • However the upgrade options are slightly different in case of Web or datacenter Edition. You can only upgrade from Windows server 2003 web Edition to Windows server 2008 Web edition. Same with Datacenter Edition
  • The final condition is that Windows server 2003 Service pack 1 should be installed if you want to upgrade to server 2008.This means that if you have Windows server 2003 R2, the upgrade is possible without any further service pack installation
The following upgrade paths are possible:

Windows server 2003 standard Edition -> Windows server 2008 standard Edition &
Enterprise Edition

Windows server 2003 Enterprise Edition ->Windows server 2008 Enterprise Edition

Windows server 2003 2003 Datacenter Edition ->Windows server  2008 Datacenter

Windows server 2003 2003 Web Edition -> Windows Web server 2008

Windows server 2003 2003 for Intanium Enterprise Edition -> Windows sever 2008
for Intanium based system

Note: You cannot upgrade to a different processor architecture, ie you cannot
upgrade from Windows server 2003 x86 Standard edition to Windows server 2008 x64
Edition even if the processor is 64 bit and will support the OS


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