The trust relationship between this workstation and the primary domain failed

Whenever I try to join a computer to the domain, and through the wizard process I receive an error message that says
"The user couldn't be added because the following error has occured: The trust relationship between this workstation and the primary domain failed."

I would like to know why this message pops up.

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Is this an NT domain or 2000/2003?

Can you connect the server at all from the workstation? can you ping it?
Also, are you using a domain admin account (or an account with permission to add clients to the domain) to add the clients?
Before you add a computer to the domain, has it been reimaged or did someone else prepare it? I'm suspecting that you're trying to add a computer that was connected to the domain when it was imaged. If the machine was syspreped, that would produce the error you're getting. Instead of using the wizard, check the system properties -> computer name tab and click 'change' instead of 'Network ID'. See if the computer is already a member of the domain you're trying to join. If so, change to a workgroup first, reboot, then change back to the domain.

You may also need to change the SID if you have a duplicate. Download this tool, if that is necessary:


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ChuckbuchanAuthor Commented:
I guess I know where the problem is :
I logged as a local administrator before I tried to join the computer to the domain.

Am I right?
No, that's nothing to do with it !

Try to change the Workstation name and try again !

Best Regards !
ChuckbuchanAuthor Commented:
to mcp jon : can you explain the process please. it sounds like your approach is right.
Right click my computer- properties- computer name tab

"to rename this computer or join a domain, click change"

So click change:

Is the computer listed as a member of a domain or a workgroup?

If it is a domain, do as suggested above by SirtenKen.

If it is listed as a workgroup, then select domain and type in the full name of your domain. Then click ok. At this point, you should be prompted for a login of someone who has rights to add the comptuer to the domain (ie: a domain admin account).
Most of those work. But does anyone know why it happens. I have a W2k3 domain and some computers get that error at random.
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