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Set up a trust between two 2003 domains

Posted on 2006-07-18
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Last Modified: 2010-04-18
I am trying to set up a trust between two Sever 2003 domains. I have full control over both, and each server is sitting here with me. I have DNS up and running on both, (maybe improperly configured), and I can ping each from the other by name and IP. Here's my problem: When setting up the trust, I get to the point where you are prompted to enter the domain name. I enter, a couple seconds go bu, and the next screen comes up saying "The name you specified is not a valid Windows domain name". What gives?

Some helpful info for answers:

1.) I can reload one, or both machines, if necessary.
2.) I can uninstall AD, or DNS, or do whatever else might be needed to get this working.
3.) Step-by-step instructions would be nice. I have two MS guides that I have followed, but keep getting stuck at the same point. I also look over this site before posting, but didn't find anything that helped me.
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Question by:cogentlogik
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Expert Comment

by:oBdA
ID: 17131216
Make sure the machines in both domains are using *only* their own DCs/DNS servers as DNS servers in TCP/IP (no ISP DNS, no DNS of the other domain!).
In domain A, create a secondary zone for domain B, allow zone transfers to domain A's DNS in domain B.
In domain B, create a secondary zone for domain A, allow zone transfers to domain B's DNS in domain A.
Let the zones replicate, create the trust using the FQDN names of the domains (not the NetBIOS names).
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Author Comment

by:cogentlogik
ID: 17131517
Both domains are using the server's IP for DNS.
I tried to create the secondary zones, but get the error message: "Zone not loaded by DNS server" and a red x appears when I click on the new zone.
Is there a chance my initial DNS settings are not correct, and *that* is what causing the issues? I remember this being relatively simple the last time I did it....
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Expert Comment

by:oBdA
ID: 17131582
If the zone can't be loaded, it's likely that zone transfers for the zones aren't allowed. Check that in the properties of the zones, zone transfers to the secondary DNS server are allowed.
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Author Comment

by:cogentlogik
ID: 17131898
Zone transfers are allowed on both domains, in all zones
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Expert Comment

by:oBdA
ID: 17131989
Anything in the event logs? A firewall between the two domains?
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Author Comment

by:cogentlogik
ID: 17132085
Nothing concrete in the event logs. Just reiterations of the errors I'm getting.
One domain is behind a Linksys RV082, with ports opened for VPN, RDP, and ICMP
The other is behind a Netgear FVS328, with only the most basic modifications from default settings.
Does that help?
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Expert Comment

by:oBdA
ID: 17132162
I'm assuming you have a VPN between domain A and domain B? Any ports blocked there (especially 53 for DNS)?
In domain A, can you run
nslookup fqdn.of.some.machine.in.domain.b IP.of.DNS.B
(for example "nsloookup dcb.domainb.local 192.168.2.1")
Do the same for domain B.
If that works, you can try it with conditional forwarding for each domain (in the forwarders tab).
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Author Comment

by:cogentlogik
ID: 17138839
Okay, I set up the VPN's and followed your further instructions. I am still getting the same error on both machines. Maybe I should start over. Only one of the domains  has been functioning, they other one is new. However, I could uninstall DNS on each, if that's where the problem lies. I can even reload one DC, or both, if need be. Can you explain to me how this should be set up, from the beginning?
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Accepted Solution

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oBdA earned 250 total points
ID: 17140869
Unless you have serious problems (check the event logs), there should be no need to reinstall those domains. DNS usually can be fixed without reinstalling.
Here are some general links on how to configure DNS in an AD domain:

10 DNS Errors That Will Kill Your Network
http://mcpmag.com/features/article.asp?EditorialsID=413

Frequently Asked Questions About Windows 2000 DNS and Windows Server 2003 DNS
http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=291382

Best practices for DNS client settings in Windows 2000 Server and in Windows Server 2003
http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=825036

How to Verify the Creation of SRV Records for a Domain Controller
http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=241515

SRV Resource Records May Not Be Created on Domain Controller
http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=239897

How Domain Controllers Are Located in Windows XP
http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=314861

What you need to create a trust is a two-sided full name resolution for the two domains. This can either happen with a replicated secondary zone (a bit faster) or conditional forwarding. Either requires allowing connection to port 53 in the other domain.
The first thing to get to work is a manual lookup of dns names in the other domain using nslookup as described above.
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Author Comment

by:cogentlogik
ID: 17193670
I got sidetracked with another project. I will get back to this today, and let you know how it turns out. Thanks for your help so far.
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Author Comment

by:cogentlogik
ID: 17420962
I used mny of the links you submitted and came up with a solution. Thanks for your help!!
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