Migrate From Server 2012 to Server 2022 Domain Controllers

Server 2012 DC to Server 2022 DC KB ID 0001790


I get asked about this quite a lot. In the past most of the queries were about moving from Server 2008 to Server 2022, if that’s what you are after then simply go here. This article is purely for the introduction of, and migration to Windows Server 2022 Domain Controllers. And it assumes your current domain controllers are Windows server 2012 (or 2012 R2).

Adding a Server 2022 Domain Controller

Once you have a Windows Server 2022 box stood up and fully updated, ensure it is added to the domain as a member server. Then from Server Manager > Manage > Add roles and features.

Server 2022 Add Roles

Next > Next > Next  Next > Select “Active Directory Domain Services” > When prompted select ‘yes‘ to add the required services.

Promote 2022 Server to DC

Next > Next > Next > Install > Close.

Add AD Role Server 2022

Click the ‘Warning Triangle‘ > Promote this server to a domain controller.

Add a Windows 2022 Domain Controller


Promote Server 2022 to Domain Controller

Enter the DSRM Password > Next.

Add 2022 to Existing Domain

That’s fine (if you’re worried see the link below) >Next.

Windows – A Delegation For This DNS Server Cannot Be Created

Add 2022 to Existing Domain


Server 2022 a DNS Delegation

I’m accepting the default AD install locations > Next.

Promote Server 2022 to DC

Next (forestprep and domainprep is all done for you now).

Default AD locations 2022


2022 Forestprep and domainprep


Migrate domain Controllers to 2022

When complete the server will reboot.

Reboot Dc Promotion

View Server 2022 Domain Controller

You should now see the new domain controller listed in Active Directory

Show all domain controllers

At this point I’m moving all the FSMO roles to the new Windows 2022 server.

Windows Server – Locating, Transferring, and Seizing FSMO Roles

Transfer FSMO to Server 2022

Demoting the 2012 Domain Controller(s)

WARNING: Before proceeding, make sure anything on your network that may be using this server for DNS has been pointed to your new domain controllers. Don’t forget to change the DNS servers that are being distributed via DHCP, (update your DHCP scopes). And change your new domain controllers to look at themselves for DNS not the domain controller(s) you are about to demote!

Over on your 2012 domain controller > Server manager > Manage > Remove roles and features.

Demote Server 2012 DC

Next > Untick ‘Active Directory Domain Services’ > Demote this domain controller > Next.

How to Demote 2012

Tick  ‘Proceed with removal‘ > Next.

Remove a domain Controller

Untick ‘Remove DNS delegation’ > Next.

Remove DNS Delegation 2022

Set a new local administrator password for this server to use after it has been demoted (as it will be a member server at that point). You can of course still log into it as the domain admin. > Next > Demote.

Create new local admin password

When complete, the server will reboot.

Reboot demotion

You can now (if you wish raise your domain functional level). Note: Check you meet all the prerequisites for doing so, personally I rarely update them until I have a specific need to do so.

Raise Domain Functionl Level to 2016

Once you are confident all your domain controllers in the domain have replicated, you can then update the forest functional level if you wish to do so.

Raise Forest Functionla Level to 2016

Related Articles, References, Credits, or External Links


Author: PeteLong

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  1. This worked brilliantly, and made it the fastest migration I have ever done! Thanks a lot, brilliant article.

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    • I haven’t done this yet but I read the article. I’ve done this in past with 2000->2008 and 2008->2012. I always dread trying to remember all the steps. Looks like an excellent guide to refresh my memory! Thanks.

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  2. Awesome article. Made it very easy to migrate to server 2022

    Thanks for taking the time to post it

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  3. Super clear super easy, Loved It! And So Did My Allocated Hours!

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  4. Great tutorial, straight to the point

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  5. This is exactly what I was looking for!! Only one question remains. How do I go about moving the users’ home folders and files to the new DC? Its currently in a second drive in my original DC.

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  6. I upgraded my network from Server 2012 R2 to Server 2022.

    Excellent and works perfectly.

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  7. Seems pretty easy!

    We still have a Windows Server 2012 R2 with a small RDS farm. We want to move to AVD.
    But how would you migrate a VSP hosted domain controller to a Windows Server 2022 within Azure?

    What are the requirements?

    Kind regards,

    Post a Reply

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