HOW TO: Plan for a Large Site UNIX-to-Windows Migration

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This step-by-step article describes how to plan for a large site UNIX-to-Windows migration. When you migrate from a site that is hosted by multiple UNIX computers, you must identify the method that is used in your site, and then select a strategy for the migration.

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Planning for a Multi-Host Configuration

Examine the current configuration, and then duplicate the physical environment before you migrate the Web site or sites to the new hosts.

If the site hosts multiple Web sites across a number of servers, the migration is straightforward. You can create new virtual Web sites under Windows to host each site. You may find that you can reduce the number of physical servers that is required in this installation by placing more sites on to the same computer. This also reduces the administration of the new service, because you can control more sites from the same computer.

Use a different method if the site is hosting only one Web site, or a number of departmental sites that make up a whole domain site such as, and In this scenario, migrate the sites in the same physical formats that are used under UNIX, by using redirection to redistribute requests around the servers.

If a site is hosted in its entirety by a number of computers, each of which connects to the site contents from a central repository, you can use the same method under Windows.

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Identifying Multi-Host Setups

Check the Httpd.conf file. If there are a number of VirtualHost directives, this indicates the existence of a large number of virtual Web sites. If this is replicated across a number of servers, you have a multi-host, virtual-Web site structure. You can duplicate this by using Windows and virtual Web sites. Migrate one Web site at a time, until you have migrated all of the Web site for a particular host.

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Identifying Redirection

You can identify whether a current Apache configuration is using redirection to redistribute requests around the network by identifying Redirect directives in the Httpd.conf file. If the redirects move the folder access to another computer, the full URL of the host for that area of the Web site is included.

You can use this to your advantage, by migrating individual virtual Web sites to their new Windows host, and then using redirection on the UNIX hosts to point to the new servers as each one becomes available. By using a staged migration, you can check each area of the site without changing the whole Web site.

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Identifying Shared or Distributed Folders

If your existing site uses shared folders on a central computer to hold the Web site but redistributes the content through a number of physical servers, you must replicate this configuration under Windows. You can identify if this is the current setting by examining the DocumentRoot directive in Httpd.conf file, and then using df or mount to determine if the folder that you are serving the files from has been accessed from an NFS server.

Use Services for Unix to access the same NFS-shared folder, and use this as the document root for your site in Internet Information Services (IIS).

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For additional information about how to prepare for migration from UNIX to Windows, click the article number below to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
324215 HOW TO: Prepare for a UNIX-to-Windows Migration
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Article ID: 323950 - Last Review: 02/27/2014 21:13:43 - Revision: 4.2

Microsoft Windows 2000 Server, Microsoft Windows 2000 Advanced Server, Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional Edition, Microsoft Small Business Server 2000 Standard Edition, Microsoft Internet Information Services 5.0

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