Well, the server here is now running Notes/Domino 8.5 beta 1. Now, practically every beta install of Domino I've done over the years has been weird in some way, and this isn't any different. For one, I refuse to "upgrade" Windows 2000 Server to Windows 2003 Server, but that's OK, because Domino 8.5 runs just fine on Windows 2000. That's right, Domino 8.5 beta can run on Windows 2000.
Second, I wanted to install this next to my 8.00beta installation, not over the top of it (in case something got really screwed up). As usual, the installer has no idea how to do this. Yes, you can say, "get important system files from CD or other media," but that doesn't mean it actually does it. The installer refuses to progress unless you give it the name of another Domino server in your domain, even if you tell if you don't want it to get the names.nsf and all that stuff from it.
So, fuckit, I ran the installer until I hit an error, then exited it, manually copied NOTES.INI and all my NSFs over, studiously avoiding overwriting newer templates and whatnot. Then I fired up the server, let it settle down, then killed it again. Since the installer is the only thing capable of installing the system service entry in the registry, I then had to manually modify the registry entry for the existing Domino install so that the Services applet would start 8.5, not 8.00. It's in HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/Control/CurrentControlSet/Services, in case you want to find it. Anything that refers to the earlier install's directory or name, change.
Then I lit it up one more time, and the system was operable. I have to manually flag all the NSFs to create the full-text index, but that's not a big deal. The important thing is, it runs, it runs without griping, and it runs well on an officially unsupported platform, namely Windows 2000.
As I'd expect.