Migrating your Sharepoint 3 (2007) Site from SBS2003 to SBS2008

EDIT:  DON’t use my method, use Chad’s!    Much better way of doing it without losing your SBS2008 sharepoint features.   Thanks Chad.

Original Article:

NOTE:  Completely unsupported by Microsoft, and WILL DELETE YOUR SBS2008 Companyweb, so backup first!

If, like me, you did not wait for Small Business Server 2008 to get Sharepoint 3 up and running, you may be in this situation….

The Microsoft documentation for the SBS2003 to SBS2008 migration makes no mention of how to migrate from Sharepoint 3 (2007) to your new SBS2008 server that is sitting on your half migrated domain.  Of course, this would be expected as it is a completely unsupported setup.    There are, however, a lot of you out there that followed Chad Gross on his excellent instruction on how to replace your Sharepoint 2 http://companyweb with your Sharepoint 3 http://companyweb that are now in the situation where you need to move your site over.

My recommendation is, in this scenario, not to attempt to use Sharepoint Designer or Frontpage 2003 to try to backup one site and move to another.   Doing this causes all sorts of problems and rarely works.    The second method that is also useless, is the web based backup feature of Sharepoint 3.

So, what to do…    Well, it is quite simple really.

On your source SBS2003 server, that is running Sharepoint 3 (2007) run the following command (when in the folder C:Program FilesCommon FilesMicrosoft Sharedweb server extensions12BIN):

stsadm -o backup -url http://companyweb3/ -filename cwebbackup.bak

Note that my Sharepoint 3 site on my SBS2003 server is called companyweb3, yours may be different.

This backup will take a while depending on the information on your companyweb site, and will create the cwebbackup.bak file, which you should then move to your new SBS2008 machine (let’s assume the c: drive).

Once the file is on the new server, browse once again to the C:Program FilesCommon FilesMicrosoft Sharedweb server extensions12BIN  folder on the SBS2008 machine and run this command:

stsadm -o restore -url http://companyweb/ -filename c:cwebbackup.bak -overwrite

Please note that if you get an Access is Denied error message when you run this, you may need to go into the site collection administrators and add the user you are currently logged onto the SBS2008 machine as, as the second site administrator.

The above command will completely restore your Sharepoint 3 site, and subsites / permissions etc and you should be good to go on your new companyweb version 3 site on SBS2008.




  3 Replies to “Migrating your Sharepoint 3 (2007) Site from SBS2003 to SBS2008”

  1. December 31, 2008 at 6:02 am

    Thanks for the info

    I already use STSADM to do a backup so was planning on using this restore method to move over to my SBS 2008 box

    Does this bring workflows across with it?


  2. NickWhittome
    December 31, 2008 at 6:33 am

    Hey Andy,

    Honestly, I don’t know… I wrote this late last night after 14+ hours of migration hell 🙂

    If you find out before me, please feel free to post back on the thread.

    Happy New Year!

  3. Chad
    May 8, 2010 at 4:27 am

    Big thanks for this, Nick.
    I’m going through the SBS 2003 -> 2008 migration guide, and your final tip for the Access Denied message was a life saver!!
    Thanks, again.

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