For Rename-SPServer, MSDN says:

The Rename-SPServer cmdlet changes the name of the server for internal use within SharePoint Products. The server itself must be manually renamed.

Now the last part isn't clear. Is renaming of the physical box (hostname/netbios name) optional or mandatory for SharePoint farm to work?


Renaming a server is a 2 step process. First you physically change the host name of the server, then you run the Rename-SPServer Cmdlet to update SharePoint farm configuration to recognize the new server name.

Yes, changing the physical host name is required. You only need to run the Rename-SPServer CmdLet when the physical host name of a server changes after it has already been added to a SharePoint Farm. In a multi-server farm, the alternative is to remove the server from the farm, change the host name, then re-add the server back into the farm like adding a new server.

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As Chris mentioned renaming SharePoint Server is a 2-step process. I came across a similar situation where I have to rename a SharePoint Application server and Web-front server. I first changed the machine name physically and then used stsadm rename server command. I found lot of articles that mention that never use Rename-SPServer command as you could run in to various issues.

Some useful links below:-

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ff607556.aspx - Rename-SPServer Microsoft article http://www.topsharepoint.com/rename-sharepoint-2010-server http://aanikin.wordpress.com/2010/09/01/how-to-rename-sharepoint-2010-server/ http://joelblogs.co.uk/2011/10/23/renaming-a-standalone-sharepoint-2010-server/ http://www.zomgrei.com/blog/tech/renaming-a-standalone-sharepoint-2010-server/ -- good one. http://vijaynats.blogspot.com.au/2011/04/renaming-sharepoint-2010-server.html http://blog.walisystemsinc.com/2012/08/how-to-change-sharepoint-2010-server.html http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/forums/en-US/sharepointgeneralprevious/thread/ae73d73e-a8cf-44f6-ae4a-fd89dd5f543b http://www.ericjochens.com/2013/03/change-sharepoint-server-hostname-and.html http://www.askaboutasp.net/_-_78_How_to_rename_a_SharePoint_Server_machine_name_3f.aspx http://code-journey.com/2009/clone-sharepoint-moss-wss-stand-alone-developer-virtual-machine-rename-sharepoint-server/

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