I'm about to perform a DB migration of an Intranet Publishing Site. Is it necessary to create the site collection before performing the DB restore?
To be clearer, you actually only need an Web Application to which you would attach the database. I would highly recomand before doing that go through checking/testing at least by using:
Also you would need at least MOSS with SP2 to be able to run these commands. There is so much documentation written on the subject. Start here http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc262792
Yes, typically the I usually do it is, provision a web application and a site collesction then I detach the content database, copy the database accross and attach db to the site collection.
Use this to mount DB to the existing sitecollection after attaching to the new server:
Mount-SPContentDatabase "" -DatabaseServer "" -WebApplication siteUrl