Joining Windows server 2008 to Windows 2000 domain

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Joining Windows Server 2008 to Windows 2000 domain

I have noticed that it is a common problem to join a Windows Server 2008 (or any machine actually) to a Windows 2000 domain.

When setting up a system you usually accept all defaults with some minor changes. After this comes the problem to change, install, join etc. etc.

If you have a Windows 2000 domain and want to join a default system you often get this message:
The following error occurred attempting to join domain “pd”:
An attempt to resolve the DNS name of a DC in the domain being joined has failed. Please verify this client is configured to reach a DNS server that can resolve DNS names in the target domain.
This example comes from a domain “pappadoc.local” with NETBIOS name “PD”.
Trying to join the domain “pappadoc.local” will result in a different message also indicating a DNS problem. The client (Windows Server 2008) was set up with DNS and WINS in the Domain.

I tried some solutions indicated on the net (Firewall, network etc) but none worked so I had to try to find the solution myself.

Name resolution from the client to the domain worked perfectly both via DNS and via WINS.
There was however a problem when doing the opposite. NETBIOS was OK but DNS did not resolve the client.

I tested to add the computer to the 2000 AD but as far as I could see there was no change (I did not wait very long). The entry was left as it was when I found the simple solution below. Possibly it is needed but I have not bothered to test it.

The simple solution to the problem was to change the client DNS domain name (Ex. client.pappadoc.local) to the same as the domain I was joining. After restart I could join the Windows Server 2008 to the Windows 2000 domain without any problem.

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Expert Comment


Did you check the netlogon service on windows server 2000 ?

Tushar Kaskhedikar

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