computers not finding the domain controller

kolivo used Ask the Experts™
A user has a new computer and all has been working well until lately this past week the computer will not find the domain controller. When the user attempts to login to the domain she receives the following error. "windows could not connect to the domain controller either because the Domain Controller is not available or because your computer account could not be found" I have removed the computer from the domain added it to a workgroup and then rejoined it to the domain and the user is able to connect to the domain again. This resolves the problem for a day or two but the issue comes right back again. I have replaced the lan cable and have attempted to connect the user to the domain in the docking station and out of the docking station. Does anyone have any suggestions or resolutions to this issue?
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What are the DNS server settings for your new computer set to? If it is just obtaining it automatically, it's possible it's connecting to your router's DNS server, when really it should be connecting to your domain controller's dns server. Do an ipconfig /all to check.
Usually when I see this kind of thing it means one of two things.  Either the PC can't see the DC(s) for some reason like network connectivity on the PC or the DC itself or something else is amiss with AD. If it happens again, while it's happening, try and ping both the PC and the DC by NAME and not IP address.  This would confirm network connectivity and DNS functionality. Before removing the PC from AD, check in Active Directory Users and Computers to make sure that the computer account is listed.

Remove the computer from AD as you have outlined above. Leave it in the workgroup, go to ADUC and see if it's still listed there and remove the account from there as well. Let it set for 20 to 30 minutes for replication to happen (assuming you have more than one DC), then rejoin the domain from the PC as you have outlined above.

When this happens on this PC, does it happen to any other computers.

If none of this fixes the issue, make sure that both the DC and the PC have the latest updates from MS.  If you have to load patches or services packs, do that, especially on the PC, and try  joining the PC again. If other computers are not experiencing, it's probably not "necessary" to install any service packs on the DC.


I have performed an ipconfig/all and it is connecting to our domain controller now,  I will have to wait until the error occurs again to see if its the same. I will also attempt to ping both by name once it occurs again.
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When the error occurs, make sure the NetLogon is not disabled..... Will have to login locally...
Actually, unplug the network connection see if it gets you in using a cached profile.....

When u r getting "windows could not connect to the domain controller either because the Domain Controller is not available or because your computer account could not be found"

Try Basic troubleshooting :

Please logon using local admin (local computer) and check the basic , like nslookup, if resolving ..there is no problem of connectivity

you can use nltest

nltest /dsgetdc:domaincom etc


i have renamed the computer name of the pc and it now seems to be ok
It would appear that my suggestion would have had relevance to his solution. Doing a rename affects the PCs registration with AD.
My answer 24897183 suggested as a part of the solution to remove the PC from AD and then insert it into the domain again. By renaming the PC the user affected the PCs registration with AD. My solution connects to what actually solved the problem enough to be worth taking into account.

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