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Netbios and AD

We have a native 2003 domain with 15 dc.

Couple years ago we performed a Domain Name Rename following the guide from MS and for the most part it went smooth.

Today I noticed a few issues and while not catastrophic it is a pain in my rear.

First the reason we renamed was because we had a _ in our DNS and well he had some new Macbook's that didn't like joining our domain because of it. The other issue as to why we renamed is Exchanges OWA. We found it easier to tell people to enter their email address as their username because a lot of them would confuse \ with /.... etc.

So we renamed our domain to xxx.yyy.com
During the rename process it also required the netbios name. Well at the time we simply made it the initials (abcd) of the company instead of xxx. As you can see it does not resemble the domain name at all.

We never used WINS and netbios seemed to work as you could always pull names from netbios (ie going to \\servername always worked and still works). Few days ago I found out from a a post on MS's website that WINS will not work due to the netbios name not being xxx for whatever reason.

Issue we have is since then we received copiers that can store scans on servers.... well during setup they can see everything in the folders on the various file servers however when it comes time to scan it can't reach the server. When you look at the logs it shows it tried contacting server.abcd.local which doesn't exist. abcd\server does though.

When joining a machine to the domain we have to put the full domain name as the netbios name does not seem to work. When the machine reboots after joining the domain the netbios name shows in the dropdown like it should.

Other issues are SQL related but it is related to this for the same reason... software can't seem to connect to the SQL server.

So is there a workaround, fix, or anything or would be easier to rename the domain again and make xxx our netbios name?

Is there another way to change the netbios name of an AD domain?
1 Solution
Mike KlineCommented:
Unfortunately no way to change the netbios name of the domain without a domain rename or migration

The only possible work-around I can think of is to create a forward lookup zone with the name "server.abcd.local", and in it create an A record that is blank (same as parent) and point it at the IP of the server.  This would likely work only for your copiers and not resolve any other issues.  And I second mkline71's post.
pclinuxguruAuthor Commented:
Yea I am afraid Mike is right as well. I was thinking of trying something similar to what you posted. Basically a forward lookup zone with all the dc's and stuff in it.

Do you see any downside to it?

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What's already been said is most likely correct, and I'm not a fan of renaming domains because of issues like this that crop up some time later.  I'm curious where the copier is getting the abcd.local domain name from, though.  Is that the domain's old name, or is the copier trying to extrapolate the current DNS name of your domain from its NetBIOS name by simply slapping .local on the end?  (If so, that sounds like a terrible decision on the part of the copier manufacturer.)  Is there no way to manually specify the correct DNS domain name in the device's configuration?
pclinuxguruAuthor Commented:
Basically you scan a file and it can save it to a server share.

Our servers in dns are server.xxx.yyy.com

In the settings it requires:

I have tried:

Machines on the network work fine doing it.

Im going to leave this open for a few days to see if the DNS thing works.
I can't think of a downside to having it in place.  Only things that are explicitly configured to look for it or that do something funky like your copiers should be looking for it.
pclinuxguruAuthor Commented:
My domain: xxx.yyy.zzz.com

I do an nslookup of xxx I get a list of all my DC's IP.

I do an nslookup of xxx.yyy.zzz.com I get a not found error like this:
> nslookup xxx.yyy.zzz.com
Server: dc1.xxx.yyy.zzz.com
Address:  192.168.xxx.xxx

Non-authoritative answer:
Name:   xxx.yyy.zzz.com.yyy.zzz.com
Address: is the opendns name not found.

I get this when I nslookup abcd... note that abcd is the netbios name.
> nslookup abcd
Server: dc1.xxx.yyy.zzz.com
Address:  192.168.xxx.xxx

Non-authoritative answer:
Name:   abcd.yyy.zzz.com

If nothing new pops up I'll just bite the bullet and plan for a domain rename.
I would say it thinks your domain is yyy.zzz.com and not xxx.yyy.zzz.com, or your NIC is set to always append the DNS suffix yyy.zzz.com.  Might want to check the settings of your NIC (Advanced > DNS tab), and do an ipconfig /all as some of the settings may come from Group Policy or DHCP.
pclinuxguruAuthor Commented:
I tried the DNS trick and no luck. In fact half the machines were resolving to the wrong name and caused other issues.

Renaming the domain again seems the only way to fix it.

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