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Secondary (Backup) Domain Controller

Posted on 2007-12-05
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Last Modified: 2012-06-27
Hi
I have set up a secondary domain controller using this guide.
"Step-by-Step Guide to Setting Up Additional Domain Controllers" http://www.microsoft.com/technet/prodtechnol/windowsserver2003/technologies/directory/activedirectory/stepbystep/addomcon.mspx

Everything went smooth, the Active Directory is replicated and working fine.

Now my question is, do i have to install DNS and DHCP on this Backup DC.
if I do then for DNS do i set it up exactly the same way as my Primary DC, if not please explain.
For DHCP if need to be setup, then do i assign the same scope and exclusion as the Primary DC.

Thanks  
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Question by:icdl101
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by:divinewind80
divinewind80 earned 165 total points
ID: 20415462
The scope for DHCP should not be the same.  In fact, DHCP will not allow you to make the same range as the other DC.

Concerning the DNS, it should be set up through the normal Server Administrator method, I recommend.  It will be pretty self-explanatory if you take a look at it, I think.

Are these needed?  Well, I think they are if you are indeed wanting a "backup" DC.  Consider this... if the main server went down, where would the clients send their DNS requests?

Hope this helps.
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Gssc1414 earned 170 total points
ID: 20416915
DNS - Asolutley
DHCP - Depends.

In order for clients to find resources on your network, DNS must be in place and working. I believe the DNS database will be automatically replicated to your backup DC if your DNS zone is "Active Directory Integrated".
http://technet2.microsoft.com/windowsserver/en/library/6c0515cf-1719-4bf4-a3c0-7e3514cef6581033.mspx?mfr=true

DHCP on the other hand is less critical and a network can go a few days without a DHCP (i believe the default configuration is that the client will ask the DHCP server to "renew" their lease every 4 days, which will fail if no DHCP is present - but they will keep the ip address for 8 days). I don't believe you can replicate a DHCP server. http://www.microsoft.com/technet/community/chats/trans/windowsnet/wnet_082404.mspx

I would say the best method for this would be to set up DHCP on your backup server, with a different range than your Primary server. Leave it disabled. If your Backup DC goes down, start up your Backup DC's DHCP server. Remember to Authorize the DHCP on your backup DC.

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by:Malli Boppe
Malli Boppe earned 165 total points
ID: 20417668
yeah definately set up DNS and DHCP.
DNS-AD Integrated
DHCP-.Use split scope configuration
http://technet2.microsoft.com/windowsserver/en/library/32d93a28-5ab8-4427-89cc-e2a92ee561611033.mspx?mfr=true
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Author Comment

by:icdl101
ID: 20419188
Primary DNS setting on each server is itself, now can i add the replicating partner as the alternate DNS server
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by:Gssc1414
ID: 20419763
I'm not sure what you mean. You don't need to configure a "primary" DNS on each server. Try the following:

1. Configure your Primary server's DNS server properly.
2. Make sure the DNS zone is "AD-Integrated" (Right Click the zone, It should display there under the "General tab" - Displayed as the "Type".
3. Make sure your Backup DC is configured properly to replicate the AD database. This will include your DNS server from your primary DC!
4. Set up DHCP to use Split Scope as mentioned by mboppe above.
5. Set your DHCP to hand out both a Primary DNS server address AND a secondary DNS server address.

This way, if your primary DNS server doesn't respond, your clients will send their DNS requests to the backup DC.

Hope this clears thing up / helps.
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Expert Comment

by:Gssc1414
ID: 20419820
A few more things:

1. When doing #2, Make sure your "Replication" is set to "All DNS servers in the Active Directoy Domain".
2. If you were referring to having DNS INSTALLED on your backup DC, then you are correct with that, you just don't need to configure your zones because that will be replicated with your AD when your DNS zone is AD-integrated.
3. You are also correct with the addition of the replicating partner as the alternate DNS server.
4. You are again correct with configuring each server to have it's self as the primary DNS.


I apologize for the confusion, I mis-read your comment.
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Author Comment

by:icdl101
ID: 20421911
Thank you all, as i have used all of your advice i have shared the points out equally.
Thank you so much, everything running smooth.
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