How do I create a new pointer record for WINS and DNS?

1050 pts.
DNS Records
Microsoft Windows 7
Microsoft Windows Server 2003
Microsoft Windows Vista
NT Server
Server upgrades
Windows XP Professional
We have an old NT server "server A" we want to decommission. It has a lot of files and folders that most of the company uses on a daily basis, plus links and shortcuts the users have created on their desktops pointing to it. The data is going to be moved to the new "server B" using the same file structure. We received a suggestion from IT support at another one of our locations that we should/could create a new pointer in our 2003 DC's WINS and DNS to point the users to "server B" whenever they going looking for the old "server A". How exactly do we do that, create the pointer record? We do not use any ODBC connections on this server, it is a straight file/app server, nothing unusual about it. All clients are XP Pro Sp3, win7 or vista, nothing older than that on the network except for the server we want to get rid of.

Software/Hardware used:
xp pro sp3, win7, vista, server 2003

Answer Wiki

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It is a simple concept and like most simple concepts can be quite complex in implementation. Moving file shares from server A to server B without remapping / retraining the users.

It may be worth setting all this up as a DFS or with a CNAME / OptionalName not the server name to make future server replacements / migrations simpler.

Moving server name A as an CNAME/OptionalName for server B:
– Plan an outage time for server A and server B, the server to be retired.
– Create directory structure and shares on server B, the new server.
– Turn off the shares on server A during planned outage.
– Copy all files from server A to server B during planned outage.
– Shut server A down. This is necessary to continue.
– Clear old A records for server A from DNS and remove from WINS.
– Add a CNAME of server A pointing to Server B.
– Add NetBIOS optional name of server A to Server B. This should give you a server record in WINS (20h) for the added name. (OptionalName) (After reboot)
– Depending on setup, you may need to add a SPN of the name of server A to server B, but not usually just for file shares. Print server operations do require a SPN. (Server Principle Name)
– You may need to disable strict name checking on the server as well. I recommend doing this up front. (DisableStrictNameChecking)
– Reboot server B to take effect.
– You may need to manually add additional static records to WINS for the server A name to match the optional name. Test first to see if required.

Articles on NetBIOS optional names:

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