Renaming a Domain Controller Server 2012R2

Today I had the pleasure of renaming a domain controller. At first glance you might think you can just rename the computer the usual way, but please don’t do this it wont work!

Lets say you have a domain called with an AD controller called West-AD01. The FQDN would be, lets say we need the domain controllers name to be changed to East-AD01. Here are the steps:

1) Open powershell as an admin and run: netdom computername / This adds a secondary DNS name to your domain controller, you can confirm this worked by looking up the SPN for that server.

2) In the same PS window run: netdom computername / At this point you will get a message to reboot the machine.

3) Open another powershell window as admin and run: netdom computername / Make sure you swap the computer names in this command! It will remove the old name when done correctly.

If this domain controller does not use FRS (DFS) than your job is done, if it does you will need to rename all of those mappings within AD manually.


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