Windows Server - How to Configure a 2003 BDC

Asked By Zegra on 30-Oct-08 01:35 AM
We have a Windows Server 2003 Enterprise configured as a single Domain
controller in a windows 2003 Domain with 50 client all using XP Pro...

We installed 2003 server Ent. on another machine as a backup domain
controller, and I Run the Configure your server wizard and selected the
(additional domain controller in an existing domain) and I got the message
that its now another domain controller..My question is: this server is using
the main server as its DNS and I was not able to configure it as an
additional DNS...if the PDC fails, how will users be able to log on to the
domain without another DNS online?  is there any other steps I need to take
to make sure this is a FULL Backup Server in case the PDC fails?? Thanks

MatMirabit replied on 30-Oct-08 02:45 AM
When adding a second domain contoller, there is no step to install or verify
the DNS role on the server.

You can install DNS manually using Add/Remove Programs -> Windows Components
(under Networking).

When you open up DNS Management (dnsmgmt.msc) you'll see your zone in there
as it will have replicated from your other DC.

Mat Mirabito,
MCSE, MCITP (Server & Enterprise)
winmasterpla replied on 30-Oct-08 02:56 AM
Hi Zegra1,

First of all, there is no primary domain controller and backup domain
controller in Windows 2003. It's all about FSMO roles. An addtitional domain
controller contains indeed a replica of your first domain controller. To be
sure that your client computers will work with first dc down, make sure that
their dns settings point to both dc's and make also the second dc a global

Have a nice day!
Masterplan - MCSE,MCITP-EA
RajeshJ replied on 30-Oct-08 03:12 AM
Hi Zegra1

Install 2003 as ADC, while installing ADC don’t install DNS then install DNS
manually and make the DNS as secondary DNS sever .it holds the read copy of
primary DNS server.
Make sure that nslookup is pointing booth PDC and ADC.
Meinolf Weber replied on 01-Nov-08 07:05 AM
Hello Zegra1,

For DNS i recommend that you use AD integrated zones on the running one,
if not done yet. This ensures that all zones are replicated with AD replication
to the other DC/DNS server. So on the new DC just install DNS role and wait
minimum 15 minutes, then the zones should appear also in the new DNS server
automatically. Until that use only the existing DNS server as preferred DNS
on the NIC. If all zones are copied use on both DC's itself as the preferred
and the other DNS server as secondary.

All clients has to be configured with both DNS ip addresses also, either
fixed or via DHCP scope options. If they only have one DNS and that crashes,
they are not able to logon.

Additional make both DC's also Global catalog server. No problem in a single
forest domain like your's.

Since 2000 there is no longer the PDC/BDC concept, all is based on the FSMO
roles, except of them all DC's are the same and can hold the roles according
to some rules.

Best regards

Meinolf Weber
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Paul Bergson [MVP-DS] replied on 01-Nov-08 07:05 AM
Hello Zegra1,
It is easiest if you run AD integrated dns.

How to convert dns primart to AD integrated:;en-us;198437

For dns on each of your dc's make sure you point to itself as well as the
other dc for dns services.  We point to itself and then a secondary but there
are reasons for a secondary first.  Read the link on Best practices and you
can decide.

Best Practices:

For each client in your AD Domain, they need to be aware of multiple dns
servers in the even one fails.  In the best prctice above it will explain
that you need to make sure that w/o this your clients won't be able to logon,
so be sure to include this in your clients ip config settings.

Paul Bergson
MVP - Directory Services
MCTS, MCT, MCSE, MCSA, Security+, BS CSci
2008, 2003, 2000 (Early Achiever), NT4

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is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers no rights.