Windows netlogon errors

In setting up a domain with Active Directory on Windows 2000/XP, you may encounter errors with the netlogon service if DNS is not set up properly. The problem relates to the first domain controller in a child domain being unable to register SRV records with the DNS server of the parent domain. A variety of similar error messages will appear in your System log, often filling the system log fairly quickly (Netlogon is a heavily used service). This problem has been documented in a Microsoft Knowledge Base Article, number Q316239, and it is a common problem.

You run into this problem when you create the first domain controller in the child domain, and have that controller reference the Active Directory integrated DNS server in the parent domain as its primary DNS server. The option Allow dynamic updates in DNS is also set by default to Only Secure Updates, and contributes to this problem.

The solution to this problem is to set the Allow dynamics updates option to Yes in the parent domain's DNS service. Start by opening the DNS service application, and in the Forward Lookup zone right click and select your domain, and then select properties. Set the option to Allow dynamic options to Yes, and then stop and restart DNS. You can do a restart inside the Services control panel, or from the Command Prompt using the net stop dns command, followed by the net start dns command. Then go to the child domain controller and perform a restart on the Netlogon service there.

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Barrie Sosinsky is president of consulting company Sosinsky and Associates (Medfield MA). He has written extensively on a variety of computer topics. His company specializes in custom software (database and Web related), training and technical documentation.

This was first published in September 2002

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