:::: MENU ::::

Clean-up of a Orphaned Active Directory Server 2003R2 Namespace

In my previous post [here] I documented how to enable Access Based Enumeration on a 2003R2 DFS AD Namespace.  Since then several times in testing and now once in production or NameSpace has become orphaned from its NameSpace Server Host and I have had search how to clean-up an orphaned DFS Namspace.

Incase it every happens again… and so that I don’t have to search the web and try to figure out which random terms I used in the Google search I am documenting the process to fix an Orphaned Namespace here… for your use as well as mine. 

Since historically just pasting the links ends up burning me… I have included the step by step procedure, that was of course copied from several websites (Note: I am not claiming, any responsibility for, or noting the existence of, original content).

Your Mileage may very and no implied guarantees that the following steps will solve your issue… But the following did fix my issue with an Orphaned Namespace.

These steps have worked to delete the orphaned namespace because of server failure or loss of DFSRoots directory
(or migrating from one SAN to another and thinking that DFS replication will replicate your DFSRoots to a new volume on the new SAN… which by the way DFS replication doesn’t replicate DFSRoots)


The domain-based DFS configuration is stored in the AD database as well as some settings on the DFS Namespace Host server, so every time you launch the DFS management console, it will try to retrieve the DFS information from AD.

There are two nodes in AD which store the information of the DFS Namespace:

Node1. Store the DFS Namespace information which shows under the Namespaces node in DFS management console. CN=DFS-Configuration, CN=System, DC=Domainname, DC=domainsuffix

Node2. Store the DFS Replication group information which shows under the Replication node in DFS management console. CN=DFSR-GlobalSettings, CN= System, DC=Domainname, DC=domainsuffix

ON a DC use ADSIedit.msc to delete the orphaned namespace information domain.tldDFS_Namespace under the node CN=DFS-Configuration.

1. Launch ADSIedit.msc

2. Connect to "Default naming context" (the domain partition)

3. Expand and locate to the following node:
CN=Dfs-Configuration, CN=System, DC=ourdomain, DC=tld

4. Check if the orphaned namespace CN=DFS_Test is under it, if so, you may delete this node CN=DFS_Test

5. Afterwards, please run "repadmin /syncall" if there are multiple domain controllers in the environment

6. Then run "dfsrdiag pollad" on all the DFS member servers to manually make them sync the information from AD database.

Then, you may launch the DFS management console and then right-click on the orphaned namespace, and then select Remove Namespace from Display… if needed.

After these steps you can proceed to re-create your DFS Namespace. When creating the Namespace you may receive the error: “ The Server you specified already hosts a namespace with this name. Please Select Another Namespace or another server to host the namespace.”

If that occurs:

1. Stop the DFS service by tying net stop dfs at a command prompt.

2. Delete the following three registry keys/values:

3. Reboot the server and restart DFS Service.

4. If it still appears, delete the Namespace from the Display.

5. Proceed to recreate a Namespace.


So, what do you think ?