Question: My organization is running an older Windows Server 2008 R2/2012/2012 R2 Domain Controller. We want to upgrade to Windows Server 2016. What is the Microsoft recommended way to upgrade a domain?
Answer: The recommended way to upgrade a domain is to promote domain controllers that run newer versions of Windows Server and demote the older domain controllers as needed. That method is preferable to upgrading the operating system of an existing domain controller.
At a high level, the process looks like this:
- Leave your existing Windows Server domain controller as is
- Setup your new Windows Server domain controller
- Synchronize the new Windows Server domain controller with the old one
- Promote the new domain controller
- Demote the old domain controller