Possible to sysprep/capture computers on a domain?

I'm investigating the possibility of doing this:

We have x number of VM:s in a "cloud" (ESXi).
We have the ability to take snapshots/restore
All VM:s run Win 2012 Server
One of the VM:s is a Domain Controller (MYDOMAIN)
All other VM:s are are on the domain MYDOMAIN
We have done a lot of configurations in the applications that are dependent on MYDOMAIN
The servers are supposed to be deployed elsewhere in the future (copy VM:s is not an option)
If we do image development the standard way with reference images that are captured and deployed, then the application configuration post image will be extensive

Question:
Is it possible to:
Sysprep and capture each VM except the DC
Then setup the DC from scratch at the new site with same settings as before
Then deploy each VM at the new site and join the domain MYDOMAIN

Will that for example  preserve most application settings that are dependent in MYDOMAIN?
Other problems?
Is it possible at all?

Please provide comments and links!
Ron DokkensirAsked:
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David Johnson, CD, MVPOwnerCommented:
sysprep will remove user settings and domain membership
Ron DokkensirAuthor Commented:
What exactly do we mean by user settings?
Ron DokkensirAuthor Commented:
If we express it this way - what is the most straight forward way to create a replica of the system somewhere else?

(without copying the actual VM:s)
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David Johnson, CD, MVPOwnerCommented:
Corrected link:
http://www.experts-exchange.com/OS/Microsoft_Operating_Systems/Windows/Windows_7/Q_28398972.html

When you sysprep a machine the machine reverts back to the original out of box settings for the computer. All user data is removed.
Ron DokkensirAuthor Commented:
When you sysprep a machine the machine reverts back to the original out of box settings for the computer. All user data is removed.

Yes I see but how do we define user data?
E.g. installed software will be captured to the WIM image,
How can you tell what software settings will be lost in sysprep

For example if we have a SQL server on the image, the settings stored in it's tables will be preserved.
If we have config in c:\users\.. it will be lost.

But in other cases?
Ini files stored in c:\program files\.. ?
c:\..\Application Data..\ ?
David Johnson, CD, MVPOwnerCommented:
everything in c:\users will be replaced by the default values.
c:\programdata, c:\program files, c:\program files (x86) will not be affected. if you use /copyprofile it will copy c:\users\administrator to c:\users\default

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Ron DokkensirAuthor Commented:
What about registry settings for installed 3rd party applications?
David Johnson, CD, MVPOwnerCommented:
if in hklm (machine) unchanged, gone if in hkcu (user settings)
Ron DokkensirAuthor Commented:
So all in all..
Is there something to gain if we capture the fully configured machine with domain dependencies?

Of course you can't be sure, it depends on the application.

But if we're lucky, could it decrease the amount of work post-deploy?
David Johnson, CD, MVPOwnerCommented:
Don't forget that the machine will be removed from the domain and only be a workgroup computer after sysprep.  I personally don't like fat deployments and use application installation onto a base machine.. This means less images to have to maintain over time
Ron DokkensirAuthor Commented:
Don't forget that the machine will be removed from the domain..

Yes but it will be joined to a new DC with the same domain name and the same setup of users and groups and even passwords. Wouldn't that go far..?
David Johnson, CD, MVPOwnerCommented:
Yes but it will be joined to a new DC with the same domain name and the same setup of users and groups and even passwords.

A sysprepped image is a generic image. One then installs this image onto a computer that computer can remain in a workgroup or join any domain.  It knows nothing about where it came from.
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