October 24, 2010

How to Change the Name of a Domain Controller

As organizations change, so does your naming scheme on the network. Maybe your small business is turning into a small enterprise. Maybe your boss decided to change the company name. (We’ll talk about changing your domain name some other time.) Maybe you just decided you didn’t like the name of that server.
You already know changing the name of a computer or members server is just as easy as changing the name on the Computer Name tab of System Properties and a quick restart. Changing the name of a Domain Controller isn’t that simple.

Here are the steps.
1. Create a list of all the devices on the network that reference the Domain Controller by name.
2. Open the command prompt and use the following command.
3. Verify the name was added by opening ASDIEDIT.MSC. Find the object for the Domain Controller. Right click and select properties. Scroll down to the msDS-AdditionalDnsHostName attribute.
4. Register the name in DNS. Open the command prompt and use the following command.
5. Verify the DNS entry has replicated to all DNS servers.
6. Now it’s time to make the change permanent. Again in the command prompt.
7. Check that the old name appears in ADSIEDIT.MSC under the  msDS-AdditionalDnsHostName attribute.
8. Restart the Domain Controller.
9. Remove the old name. From the command prompt.
10. Verify there is no entry in the msDS-AdditionalDnsHostName attribute of ADSIEDIT.MSC.