Server 2012 unable to add computers


I've taken over the management of a Windows Server 2012. Currently it has a DC, eight computers and fifteen different users.

When I try to add new clients to the domain (via the client device) they are unable to connect. So I add them directly to the server in AD however when I do this I'm not able to set the DNS name anywhere.

What am I missing?

Who is Participating?

[Product update] Infrastructure Analysis Tool is now available with Business Accounts.Learn More

I wear a lot of hats...

"The solutions and answers provided on Experts Exchange have been extremely helpful to me over the last few years. I wear a lot of hats - Developer, Database Administrator, Help Desk, etc., so I know a lot of things but not a lot about one thing. Experts Exchange gives me answers from people who do know a lot about one thing, in a easy to use platform." -Todd S.

Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
Exact errors are critical is diagnosing problems.  As is exact versions of Windows.  Assuming this is not Server 2012 Essentials, have you checked to ensure DNS is properly configured on the clients when you attempt to add them to the domain?  The clients should ONLY be pointing to the server for DNS and the Server should ONLY be pointing to itself (it's DNS server can use forwarders if you want, but otherwise MUST be pointing to itself).
What username are you using to add the clients?  By default, a non-administrative account has a limit of 5 or 10 system that it can add into an AD domain.
Depending on the account/credentials you are using to add, that might be the issue you are running into.  One you add the AD account, and then go on the client, you are prompted that the account already exists and whether you wish to use it for this system?

Depending on what is on the system, you may have to check the classification of the network connection as well as check whether there is a third party internet security (firewall) that is blocking queries to 445, etc.
the best way to ensure you hit the dc at the first attempt to see
> correct ip address and subnet mask
> correct gateway ip
> correct dns 1 and dns2 ip address
> edit host file c:\windows\system32\drivers\etc\hosts and ensure you specify the  ip and fqdn
> ensure you successfuly ping the dc with dns name
> now you should add the system to the domain and it should hit the dc without any issues using the admin or administrator equivalent account. if you use an account with add workstation there is a limitation of 20 beyond that you would get error and not succeed, you should edit the adsedit and increase the default value

if you are not able successfully ping the dc with dns name then no point trying to add unless its been resolved.

good luck
Will SzymkowskiSenior Solution ArchitectCommented:
When I try to add new clients to the domain (via the client device) they are unable to connect. So I add them directly to the server in AD however when I do this I'm not able to set the DNS name anywhere.

Based what I think you are saying above is...

You are trying to add a machine to the domain (you do not have network connectivity or there are other connectivity issues preventing you from adding the machines)? Is this correct?

You then add the new computer object to active directory users and computers. Once you add this you are not prompted to enter a DNS Host name?

This is by design. When you add new computer object to active directory using the GUI there is no option to in put the DNS Host name. If you are doing this via Powershell (New-ADComputer) you can use the parameter DNSHostName during this process.

However regardless of how you do this, simply entering the DNS Host Name does not register this machine in DNS. When you add a machine to your domain correctly and using the System Properties on the client itself there are a bunch of things that happen automatically.
- computer object is created in ADUC
- If the same name already exists in AD and the computer object is not already used it will use the current AD Computer object
- At this point your client will register itself in DNS as well during this process.

So that being said even if you are trying to add a machine to the domain you HAVE TO do it from the computer regardless of you creating a computer object (pre-staging) it directly on the DC.


Experts Exchange Solution brought to you by

Your issues matter to us.

Facing a tech roadblock? Get the help and guidance you need from experienced professionals who care. Ask your question anytime, anywhere, with no hassle.

Start your 7-day free trial
It's more than this solution.Get answers and train to solve all your tech problems - anytime, anywhere.Try it for free Edge Out The Competitionfor your dream job with proven skills and certifications.Get started today Stand Outas the employee with proven skills.Start learning today for free Move Your Career Forwardwith certification training in the latest technologies.Start your trial today
Windows Server 2012

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.