Recently I spent some time installing my first 2012 DC into an existing Active Directory environment. I installed the server, logged in and ran dcpromo.

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And pretty quickly I felt the sinking feeling that “this is no longer your father’s domain controller installation”.

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So, how do we install a domain controller on Windows Server 2012? Add roles and features as part of Server Manager.

Add roles and features – Active Directory Domain Services

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Once the feature is installed a flag appears that there are additional post-deployment configuration steps which need to occur to promote this server to a domain controller.

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For my environment I was adding a domain controller to an existing domain.

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I specified the configuration including the site to add the DC to and the DSRM password as shown below.

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Additional options were available to install from media or to specify the server to replicate from.

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Since this is only a lab environment the installation was done to the default locations shown below.

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My first attempt to install failed due to issues with my domain.

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To fix this I had to remove a defunct domain controller in my environment. After I removed the DC through active directory users and computers and re-tried the test things moved along as expected.

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The installation completed successfully.

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After the installation completed and the server was rebooted the domain controller after the promotion process was completed.

Summary: Wanting to install a domain controller and looking for the good-ole-dcpromo? It’s now part of Server Manager and is added as part of the “Active Directory Domain Services” role.

Additional readings on this:

http://www.petri.co.il/windows-server-2012-as-domain-controller.htm