Home > Windows Server 2008 R2 > Transfer or Seize Flexible Single Master Operations (FSMO) Roles

Transfer or Seize Flexible Single Master Operations (FSMO) Roles

There are five Flexible Single Master Operations (FSMO) roles for domain controllers. They are:

  1. infrastructure master
  2. naming master
  3. pdc (primary domain controller)
  4. rid master
  5. schema master

To transfer the five Flexible Single Master Operations (FSMO) roles we will use a tool called ntdsutil. NtdsUtil is a Directory Services Management Tool. NtdsUtil performs database maintenance of the Active Directory store, management and control of the Floating Single Master Operations (FSMO), and cleaning up of metadata left behind by abandoned domain controllers. Abandoned domain controllers are those which are removed from the network without being uninstalled properly. For more on NtdsUtil, visit: NtsdUtil

To transfer these roles to a different domain controller:
Logged in as Domain Administrator on the domain controller in which you want to transfer the roles from:

  1. Open a Windows CMD Shell.
  2. Type ‘ntdsutil’ You should be greeted with a “ntdsutil: ” prompt.
  3. Type ‘roles’ You should be greeted with a “fsmo maintenance: ” prompt.
  4. Type ‘connections’ You should be greeted with a “server connections: ” prompt.
  5. Type ‘connect to server <server_name_here>’ where server name is the name of the domain controller you wish to transfer the roles to. You should receive a confirmation stating that it is binding to the domain controller using the credentials of the locally logged on user.
  6. Type ‘q’ to exit server connections. You should be back to the fsmo maintenance prompt.
  7. Type ‘transfer infrastructure master’
  8. Type ‘transfer naming master’
  9. Type ‘transfer pdc’
  10. Type ‘transfer rid master’
  11. Type ‘transfer schema master’
  12. Type ‘q’ to exit fsmo maintenance
  13. Type ‘q’ to exit ntdsutil.
  14. Type ‘exit’ to close the CMD shell.

If the domain controller is dead you will need to use the command ‘seize’ to take the role back. Example: ‘seize infrastructure master’ and so on for the other four.

Useful Links:

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/255504 (Microsoft Support Article on Transferring or Seizing FSMO Roles)

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