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Disjointed DNS namespace

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Last Modified: 2013-11-19
We have worked ourselves into a predicament and could really use some advice.  We have two windows 2000 servers running on a network.. lets call them server1 and server2.  

Server 1 was a NT4 PDC that was upgraded to Windows 2000 and is the first domain controller in our Active Directory with the global catalog on it.  

Server2 was a member server that we ran dcpromo on to make it a domain controller.  It is also the exchange 2000 server.  

We also enabled the Global Catalog on server2 since our goal is to decommission server1 asap.  When server1 gets shut down or rebooted we get tons of errors on server2 that there is no domain controller available.  After a little digging we realized what happened.  It seems we created what Microsoft calls a disjointed DNS namespace as described here:

http://w2kinfo.nacs.uci.edu/PDF-Docs/Troubleshooting%20Common%20Active%20Directory%20Issues%20in%20Windows%202000.htm

We did read that the only supported method to recover from a disjointed namespace is to use dcpromo to remove the computer from the domain and make it a stand-alone server. You can then correct the DNS namespace information and run dcpromo again to promote the computer back to a domain controller.  When we attempted to run dcpromo on server2 to make it just a member server so we could correct our DNS problem, we received the following error

The operation failed because: The Directory Service failed to replicate off changes made locally.  "The DSA operation is unable to proceed because of a DNS lookup failure."

Server1 and server2 are the only Windows servers on the network.  Both are running DNS and I can query the nameserver with nslookup.  I have to assume someone else has been in this situation before.  The urgency is that server1 is showing signs of hardware problems and its days are numbered.  If it dies the domain will die with it, and I would really like to prevent that from happening.  If someone could point me in the right direction, I would be eternally grateful.  Thanks in advance.

Alan Berkson
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