Need to build a CRM 3 VM to Upgrade to CRM 2013? Here’s how.

We have a few customers still running CRM 3.0 after all these years. With the excitement of CRM 2013, they have decided to upgrade at one shot. Dynamics CRM 3.0 can upgrade to CRM 4.0, or one version at a time. The users don’t have be aware of this step, only the end game which is CRM 2013.

In order to process this change, and migrate the customer to the cloud, we need to upgrade their systems. In order to do this, I decided to build a VM in order to upgrade CRM 3.0 to 4.0, and then will use my 2011 VM to upgrade to 2011, then insert DB into the new CRM 2013 development system.

Easier said than done Right? I really had to dig into my memory banks to remember the process, and thought it would be helpful to others to have it accessible. So Here we go:

1. Build a Windows Server 2003 R2 Standard build VM
2. Make sure you add enough disc space to cover the size of your production database, zipped and unzipped together. I’m using 60 gigs, 2 processors and 2.5 gigs of memory in the VM.
3. Add the Domain Controller and Application Server Roles (select ASP.NET as well).
4. Reboot
5. Install SQL Server 2005 with reporting services. You must configure reporting services as well.
** CRM 3.0 started on SQL2000, and was commonly upgraded to SQL2005. The CRM 3.0 installation download includes the fixes to work with SQL2005. In the past we had to install it on SQL 2000, upgrade SQL2005 after.
6. Test Access to Reporting services once completed.
7. Copy the production CRM 3.0 database and unzip on this VM.
** Make sure you copy both ORGNAME_MSCRM and ORGNAME_METABASE as these were separate DBS in CRM 3.0
8. Restore CRM 3.0 database to the SQL Server.
9. On the CRM 3.0 CD, explore and run the redeployment tool .MSI.
10. Run the CRM 3.0 redeployment tool, enter server name localhost and select the production DBs.
11. Choose to manually map, and find a user account of administrator, mapping your VM admin id.
12. Let redeployment complete.
13. Launch the CRM 3.0 installation, and proceed with setup. When you enter the SQL Server (localhost) you will be able to connect to an existing deployment. Choose your databases here.

That will get CRM 3.0 running again in your VM. Please note that all ISV’s etc should be removed as they will no longer work. You could have manually cleanup unless you run the uninstallers of these applications in production.

You might also want to consider using a P to V technology (Physical to Virtual) to build the VM exactly as it is in production but Virtual.

Enjoy!