I have a Sharepoint 2010 deployment (just the SP 2010 Enterprise server + SQL Server). Unfortunately, my DC has gone down so I will have problems logging into the SP Central Admin etc (these servers are of course joined to the domain).

Thus, how easy is it to change the domain that the SP Server belongs to? The old domain controller is off, I have made a new domain controller, set it up with everything, I've joined the SQL Server to it and intend to update the SQL Server user accounts. But I need to change the domain the Sharepoint 2010 server belongs to. This is easy to do (From system properties), but then the user accounts on the server have to be updated with the new domain accounts. Also, I think the site I had is using AD authentication, will this cause a problem?

Is this possible/feasible?

  • 2
    This probably needs to be asked on the sharepoint specialist site (in fact I'll flag this and ask a mod about moving it for you) but at first blush I think it comes down to this: Did you install SP using a domain account for farm configuration and whatnot? If so then I think you're pretty much boned. I would suggest running more than one domain controller in the future, but I'm not sure there's a lot you can do right now to be honest.
    – Rob Moir
    May 7, 2011 at 19:32

3 Answers 3


Here is a working way of doing it:

  • Backup all content databases
  • Uninstall SharePoint
  • Migrate server to new domain
  • Reinstall SharePoint
  • Restore content databases
  • Change site collection admins (there are still in the old domain)
  • Use Move-SPUser to migrate users from old domain to the new one

As you can see, this is not something simple, so you may include a partner who had already done it.

  • While this will work, it is overkill if you have just one SharePoint server, and a separate SQL box, see my answer.
    – Jussi Palo
    Oct 17, 2014 at 13:47

I think you need to weigh up the costs of effectively reinstalling sharepoint to a new domain vs. Restoring Active Directiry.

If you have system state backups of AD I would recommend you attempt AD restoration if you haven't tried this already.

Otherwise, Nico's suggested solution should provide a working sharepoint farm. It's worth noting that while this will restore sharepoint you may have other systems that were dependent on your ADDS services.

As Robert mentioned above a proactive means of preventing this scenario going forward would be to have at least two domain controllers. Replication means your data is duplicated for a situation such as this.

I think this scenario underlines the importance of factiring in service redundancy whilst ensuring you have a tested disaster recovery strategy.


I really don't want to copy&paste full instructions here, but here you will find steps, and they work. I have done it, and it took 4 hours for farm with one SP server and a separate SQL server that were both moved to new domain.

In a nutshell: move servers to new domain, and reconfigure permissions for new service accounts. After that, move SQL server, and reconfigure permissions. Finally migrate user accounts and groups.

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