How to Migrate DHCP from Server 2003 to Server 2008 R2 in 5 Easy Steps

The Starting Setup

1 x Windows Server 2003 R2 with DHCP configured.

Figure 1: Server 2003 DHCP Configuration

1 x Windows Server 2008 R2 with DHCP role, and service started, but no scopes configured.

Figure 2: Server 2008 DHCP with no scopes

Step-by-step Walkthrough

1. On the 2003 R2 server, from the command prompt run:

netsh dhcp server export C:\dhcp.txt all

Figure 3: Running netsh dhcp server export on Server 2003

2. Right-click the 2003 R2 DHCP server object > All Tasks > Stop

Figure 4: Server 2003 DHCP Server > All Tasks > Stop

3. Copy dhcp.txt to the 2008 R2 server
4. On the 2008 R2 server, from the command prompt run:

netsh dhcp server import c:\dhcp.txt all

Figure 5: Running netsh dhcp server import on Server 2008 R2

5. Right-click the 2008 R2 DHCP server object > All Tasks > Restart

Figure 6: Server 2008 DHCP Server > All Tasks > Restart

And verify that the DHCP configuration has been copied across!

Figure 7: 2008 R2 DHCP Server with migrated 2003 DHCP config

Note: If you have networks obtaining DHCP across routed networks from the centralized DHCP server, this will require the IP helper-address to be reconfigured on network devices to pass DHCP requests from local clients to the centralized DHCP server (unless you can give your new DHCP server the same IP as the old one).


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  2. This is to the point and easy.

  3. If you can export / import dhcp database file then why to use migration tool for the same?


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