Help Rejoining Domain Controller

Posted on 2006-06-26
Last Modified: 2012-08-13
My 2003 Standard Domain Controller crashed, so I transfered all roles to the backup machine and removed the crashed machine from Active Directory. I even deleted the DNS zone from the backup DC and re-created it (with reverse lookup zone). I verified that the machine is only pointing to itself for DNS, and checked DHCP settings to make sure there is nothing referencig the original DC.

I reinstalled Server 2003 Standard on the original DC and joined it to the domain. I set the TCP/IP settings to point DNS, etc. to (currently the only) Domain Controller. The problem is, when I run dcpromo on the original machine, I get the following error:

The operation failed because: The Active Directory intallation requires domain configuration changes, but whether these changes have been made on the domain controller (current DC FQDN) is undetermined. The installation process has quit. "The system cannot find the file specified"

Any ideas? Do I need to rename the machine? Is the problem because the machine previously existed?
Question by:Tharo_Systems
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LVL 13

Expert Comment

ID: 16983905
Hi Tharo_Systems,

When you reinstalled the old DC, did you give it the same name again?

LVL 48

Expert Comment

ID: 16983952
if DNS is pointing to itslef you wont get too far....point it to the current DC

did you complete a metadata cleanup on the existing DC to clear records from the old DC?

did you delete it from sites and services?

can you ping via name and IP
LVL 26

Expert Comment

ID: 16984037
When you said you cleaned up AD, did you use ntdsutil?

If not you will probably have to do a

ntdsutil metadata cleanup and remove the old server

see this:
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Expert Comment

ID: 16984357
Jay_Jay is right, it needs to point to the actual DNS server.

In addition, if you are using a newer version of Server 2003, you will need to run ADPREP /forestprep and /domainprep to make sure to have the schema extended proprly.

Good Luck,

Author Comment

ID: 16984438
Hi everyone. Thanks for the quick responses.

I did give it the same name. I'm hoping to avoid renaming it if possible, due to mapped drives, etc, but I'm willing if I have to.

The DNS is pointing to the actual DNS server, not itself. DNS is not yet installed on this machine. I did complete the metadata cleanup and removed the machine from AD Sites and Services. Both servers are able to ping each other.

I did use ntdsutil to remove the crashed server from Active Directory, but thanks for the suggestion.

I'm not familiar with ADPREP, but I will give those a try and post the results.

Thanks everyone!
LVL 48

Expert Comment

ID: 16984468
well at least you have your head screwed on :) you may simply be looking at a reboot off your Domain Controller as it seems to be awating some changes, what dooleydog was hitting at is if this is a 2003 R2 build you will need to run adprep tools from the second cd to prep the schema, however that's not the problem as yet

Author Comment

ID: 16984523
The following is the result of ADPREP /domainprep:

Running domainprep ...

Adprep was unable to check the domain update status.


Adprep queries the directory to see if the domain has already been prepared. If the information is unavailable or unknown, Adprep proceeds without attempting this operation.

[User Action]

Restart Adprep and check the Adprep.log file. Verify in the log file that this domain has already been successfully prepared.

Adprep encountered an LDAP error.

Error code: 0x20. Server extended error code: 0x208d, Server error message: 0000208D: NameErr: DSID-031001CD, problem 2001 (NO_OBJECT), data 0, best match of:

FYI: DONALD is the name of the DC that crashed, so apparently something is remaining that needs to be removed. Does anybody know what/where?
LVL 26

Accepted Solution

Pber earned 500 total points
ID: 16984526
You might have to reinitialize File Replication.  I know it seems odd since you only have one DC at the moment, but I had similar problems when creating a test environment from prod backups.

See this...


Author Comment

ID: 16984856
On the current DC, I executed the command:
netdom query /domain:tharosys fsmo

This produced the following result:

Schema owner                daisy.tharosys.brunswick
Domain role owner           daisy.tharosys.brunswick
PDC role                    daisy.tharosys.brunswick
RID pool manager            daisy.tharosys.brunswick
The system cannot find the file specified.
The command failed to complete successfully.

If I use NTDSUTIL to List Roles, It lists the previous DC under Infrastructure.

Does this make sense to anybody?

Author Comment

ID: 16985091
OK, I was able to seize the Infrastructure Master role, which took care of the that last error. Now I'm working on the Replication service. It doesn't want to start for some reason. I'll keep you posted.
LVL 26

Expert Comment

ID: 16985135
See my post regarding reinitializing the FRS.  You probably have to set the burflags to D4 then start the FRS.

Author Comment

ID: 16985167
I'm trying to get the File Replication Service started, but it won't start. The event logs don't tell me anything. Do you have any ideas? Thanks!
LVL 26

Expert Comment

ID: 16985244
Try loading ultrasound and see what's up
LVL 26

Expert Comment

ID: 16985254
FRSDiag might help as well:

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