Microsoft KB Archive/175023

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Renaming a Windows NT domain member

Article ID: 175023

Article Last Modified on 11/1/2006


  • Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 4.0 Developer Edition
  • Microsoft Windows NT Server 4.0 Standard Edition

This article was previously published under Q175023


Renaming a domain member (for example, a computer running Windows NT Workstation or a stand-alone server) requires you to create a new computer account and also to leave the domain, restart, rejoin the domain and restart again.

This operation can be simplified with the use NETDOM utility supplied in the Windows NT Resource Kit supplement 2. NETDOM is a powerful command-line utility to manage computer accounts.


CAUTION: The procedure described in this article has not been extensively tested in large installations. Microsoft cannot guarantee that modification of domains as recommended herein will accomplish the objective described in this article under all circumstances and in all configurations.

If you wish to change a domain member name from OldMemberName to NewMemberName, perform the following steps:

  1. Rename the computer name with the Control Panel Network tool and resart. Click Yes when prompted with the following message:

"Changing the computer name without the Domain Administrator first changing its name on the domain will result in domain accounts (including your own domain account) not being able to access or log on to this computer.

Are you sure you want to change the computer name?"

  1. Log on to the workstation using the new computer name in the domain list box.
  2. Provided that you have administrative rights on the domain, run the following command line (in a single line):

NETDOM /Domain:MYDOMAIN /user:adminuser /password:apassword MEMBER

The command line above may be run wherever you want on the network provided that you have administrative access to the computer NewMemberName.

The output looks similar to the following:

   NetDom 1.2b @1997.
   Searching PDC for domain MYDOMAIN ...
   Found PDC \\PDC
   Querying domain information on PDC \\PDC ...
   Querying domain information on computer \\NEWMEMBERNAME ...
   Computer \\NEWMEMBERNAME is already a member of domain MYDOMAIN.
   Verifying secure channel on \\NEWMEMBERNAME ...
   Verifying the computer account on the PDC \\PDC ...
   Resetting secure channel ...
   Changing computer account on PDC \\PDC ...
   Changing startup of service NETLOGON on \\NEWMEMBERNAME.
   Stopping service NETLOGON on \\NEWMEMBERNAME .... stopped.
   Starting service NETLOGON on \\NEWMEMBERNAME .... started.
   Querying user groups of \\NEWMEMBERNAME ...
   Adding MYDOMAIN domain groups on \\NEWMEMBERNAME ...

   The computer \\NEWMEMBERNAME joined the domain MYDOMAIN successfully.
   Logoff/Logon \\NEWMEMBERNAME to take modifications into effect.

For more information, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

150493 How to join a domain from the command line

WARNING: Renaming a domain member requires that you use NETDOM 1.2b or higher. The version of NETDOM included in the Windows NT Resource Kit Supplement 2 cannot be used to rename a domain member computer name.

Additional query words: reskit resource

Keywords: kbinfo KB175023