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Remove old Domain Controller

Posted on 2009-02-12
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Last Modified: 2012-05-06
Hi,
I have an old domain controller that i need to remove.
This was a dc running dhcp. dns etc
dhcp has been removed and all our dhcp scopes have been modified to not include this server as a dns server, all apps have been removed etc.
Everytime we switch this machie off there is a few clients that are effected mainly in external sites.
Some clients on site just get prompted for a password and then they re authenticate and all is well, however it causes problems on other sites where users can not even log in.
This was a gc at one time
I know to remove completely we should demote it but would rather switch it off for a few days see what is affected then we can switch it back on, like we have had to do
I need to be able to get rid of this server, seems like something still needs it. ie replication / gc
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Question by:dougdog
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18 Comments
 
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Assisted Solution

by:tntmax
tntmax earned 400 total points
ID: 23627043
Do you have other domain controllers? You can't "just turn it off" and expect things to work, as there is constantly Active Directory replication going on in the background. You need another DC/GC at the site. Make sure that it is not holding the FSMO roles. Run dcpromo to demote it gracefully. Your workstations will authenticate via any available DC in the site, so you need to demote it before it will not be used.
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by:speshalyst
speshalyst earned 400 total points
ID: 23627215
ensure to transfer the FSMO roles to another DC .. and like Tntmax says.. dcpromo is the right way to get this done safely
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Author Comment

by:dougdog
ID: 23627569
this server is not holding any fsmo roles
it is just one of around 10 domain controllers
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LVL 15

Expert Comment

by:tntmax
ID: 23627576
So why not just demote it with dcpromo?
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Author Comment

by:dougdog
ID: 23627602
because im afraid to demote it and it cause big problems
i was hoping to just switch it off then if big problems arise just switch it back on
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Author Comment

by:dougdog
ID: 23627621
when it was switched on we had a few sites that users could not even log on these sites had a dc on site but must have needed something on the particular dc i switched off
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Expert Comment

by:tntmax
ID: 23627644
You have to make sure that none of the clients are pointing to the DC for DNS before demoting it.

You'll cause worse problems by just turning it off.

Are there more domain controllers in this site?
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Expert Comment

by:tntmax
ID: 23627648
If there are more DC's, just demote it.
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Author Comment

by:dougdog
ID: 23627675
but that does not explain when it is switched off why there is big problems
at least if i switch it off and problems arise i can switch it on
if it is demoted it is not so easy fixed
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Expert Comment

by:tntmax
ID: 23627704
From my first post:

"Your workstations will authenticate via any available DC in the site, so you need to demote it before it will not be used."

If the client has authenticated against the DC, then when you turn it off, of course they have to re-authenticate. You also have mutlimaster replication, so any DC can be used and will continue to be used until it is demoted.

And it's not so bad demoting it. You can repromote it and as long as you have other DC's in the site, it should be okay. The only time you'll have problems is if you still have resources on the server, but you claim to have moved all of them....
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Expert Comment

by:tntmax
ID: 23627707
Just take a system state backup first before demoting it, if you're concerned.
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Author Comment

by:dougdog
ID: 23627923
think it is something to do with the way it is replicating
the server im taking offline is setup to replicate with the sites that have log in problems when it is switched off
i need to have other servrs replicating to the sites that cause problems i think
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Expert Comment

by:Darius Ghassem
ID: 23628721
That could be one of the problems. Make sure the clients aren't point to the DC for DNS. Make sure another DC in the site is a global catalog
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Author Comment

by:dougdog
ID: 23630965
no clients point to it for dns they used to untill i changed it a few weeks back as i knew that waould could problems.
However on the site that was giving problems i discovered that their dc was not a gc
i have now made it a dc and will check all other remote sites that their domain controllers are a dc.
Then i will try shutting it down again
anything else i should be checking for especially on the replication end
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Expert Comment

by:Darius Ghassem
ID: 23637936
Make sure you flush a clients DNS is it still doesn't work after making the DCs a GCs.
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Author Comment

by:dougdog
ID: 23651431
am i right in thinking all dcs at remote sites should be a global catalogue, would this have been the reason users could not log in?
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Accepted Solution

by:
Darius Ghassem earned 1200 total points
ID: 23653481
Correct GCs are the ones that actual  take care of authentication.
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Author Closing Comment

by:dougdog
ID: 31546328
thank guys
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