Changing the name of the forest root domain in Active Directory.

Posted on 2005-03-08
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2008-03-10
I currently have a single domain/single forest structure running W2k3 domain controllers (windows 2000 native functional level).  The name of the domain is ABCD.COMPANYNAME.CA  When the domain was originally created, I believe that it was improperly named.  It should have been called COMPANYNAME.CA.  My problem now is that I need to add a second domain to the forest called NEWNAME.  In active directory I need it's fqdn to be NEWNAME.COMPANYNAME.CA not NEWNAME.ABCD.COMPANYNAME.CA  Does this involve the use of the domain rename tool to change the name of my forest root domain? Or is this even possible?
Question by:pgsledder
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LVL 22

Expert Comment

by:Christopher McKay
ID: 13488425

Changing the domain name is possible, but has high potential to cause difficulties.
You may have better success creating a new domain controller, migrating your users to the new domain, then removing the old domain controller and then creating the second domain.

Hope this helps!


LVL 51

Expert Comment

ID: 13489279
As long as the Forest Functional Level is at Windows 2003 (which forces all domains to Domain Functional Level of Windows 2003) then this is possible.  You MUST only be using purely Windows 2003 domain controllers to do this.  Once the Forest and Domain levels have been raised, you will no longer be able to join any other server OS to the forest except Windows 2003 Server.

If this is acceptable, then go ahead and raise the Forest level, then use Rendom to accomplish your goals.

Here are some articles:

Raising Forest and Domain Levels:

Domain Rename in Windows 2003:

Please note that if you are running Exchange in the domain there are other things to consider before you attempt this.


Author Comment

ID: 13489342
What are the concerns for Exchange?  I am currently running Exchange 2003 SP1.
LVL 51

Accepted Solution

Netman66 earned 1500 total points
ID: 13491499

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