I'm trying to start User Profile synchronization service but I'm stuck on starting.

Does SharePoint check if one of the managed accounts have replicated directory changes permission?

Can user profile synchronization service be started without having a managed account with replicated directory changes?

I know that I need "Replicated directory changes" permission to make it work, but CAN the service be started without one? and then later add the right permission -> add the user to the sync

I've talked to some people I know and they still think that the user have to have replicated user to active the service (to get it "started"). I've read on Harbar http://www.harbar.net/articles/sp2010ups2.aspx

The Synchronization Connection Account must have Replicating Directory Changes on the Domain you are syncing with. It is the only way sync will work. It’s a hard requirement. Despite the scary name the Replicating Directory Changes permission makes zero changes to AD. It provides a change log capability, which improves the speed of operations such as Sync.

2 Answers 2


When you create a connection (Which is after Synchronization services started)to AD, this is place where you put the Account which required the Replicate Directory Changes.

Yes, User Profile Synchronization Services started without the account which have AD permission. SharePoint does not use the Managed account for the connection.

You should check the ULS logs/ Event Logs, get the clue why it is stuck at starting. Make sure the account under which you are running the UPS should be in Local admin.

  • So the User Profile Synchronization service can be started without having a user with "replicated directory changes"?
    – Plexus81
    Mar 10, 2015 at 12:36
  • 1
    User profile Sync should started without account(having replicate permissions) but when you start the full sync or incremental sync that is time when UPA check the permission of the account( which you provided during the connection setup).
    – Waqas Sarwar MVP
    Mar 10, 2015 at 12:41

"Replicate directory changes" permission is a must for the account using which you are executing user profile sync (the one you specify in synchronization connection settings).

  • yes I know.. but it it possible to get the service "started" without the user having "replicated permission changes" ?? I know that the service will not work without it .. but can the service still be started?
    – Plexus81
    Mar 10, 2015 at 12:26

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