Windows cannot connect to the domain....

We have a couple of computers this morning that can't connect to the network.

At both workstations, I am able to connect using my laptop and using the same network cable and port where the desktops were.

The users who normally use these computers can connect to the network using other computers in the company.

At the login screen the message "Windows cannot connect to the domain either because the domain controller is down or otherwise unavailable or because your computer account was not found.  Please try again later."

The network cards have two green light on and one of the light does appear to flicker a bit.

What could have happened overnight?  We are doing some construction in the building and moving computers around, etc... however both users reported no problems until this morning.

Both computers run XP.  Thanks
snyperjAsked:
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Rich WeisslerProfessional Troublemaker^h^h^h^h^hshooterCommented:
Double check the laptops to make certain they don't have an available wireless connection when you are using them to test the network cables.

What could have happened:
  Damage to the network cables.. in the form of crushing, crimping, or a very small cut; either breaking the connection, or adding a whole lot of errors.  because of the flicker, I'd suspect that one.
  Damage to the NICs.  Don't certain how that could have been done... but it isn't impossible.
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ToxaconCommented:
Check if the computer accounts exist in the domain. Also check if the computers have an IP address. If these are ok and you can ping the DC by name, then rejoin the computers to the domain.
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snyperjAuthor Commented:
I was going to try to change it to a workgroup , reboot, then join it back to the domain.

Problem is, I can't log in to the computer as I don't know the local administrator password in order to log on to the computer itself...  

No one is here from IT today...I just got recruited because I am a domain admin...
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ToxaconCommented:
If in emergency, you can reset the local admin password with utils like ERD Commander.
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snyperjAuthor Commented:
Well one of our IT guys called in and apparently some computers have the wrong name, or old names, and some were 'deactivated' in active directory.  He reactivated them and they are working again. Ta-da!

However, I did look in active directory earlier, hoping to spot something obvious (like this) and I couldn't find where the computers are even listed.  What did I miss?  I found the 'Computers' folder, but inside there were only 4 objects none of which looked like workstations...(we have about 50-60 which are mostly named similar to their primary user.)

Where else would I see computer names in AD
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ToxaconCommented:
Use the Search in the Active Directory Users and Computers ("ADUC"). Select object type Computer to find all computers in the domain. The Operating System property or attribute will tell you if they are workstations or servers.

The Computers container includes new computers just after joining the domain, but they can be freely moved to another container. They most likely are in an OU (Organizational Unit).
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snyperjAuthor Commented:
Thanks for all your help
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