Windows Server 2000/2003 Active Directory Directory Services Restore Mode Password Recovery

Recently on a Sunday evening I got a call from one of my friends who had a Windows Server 2003 Active Directory (AD) in his organization. He called me up and said that there is something wrong with his AD and he wants to restore a recent backup of his AD. The backup he had includes the system state backup of his AD.

My friend was asking me on how to restore the system state backup of the Active Directory. So I instructed him to restart his Domain Controller in Directory Services Restore Mode by pressing F8 while the server is restarting. Once in the Directory Services Restore Mode enter Administrator as user name and the password should be the password you have assigned as Directory Services Restore Mode Administration password while installing Active Directory.

Unfortunately, he has forgotten the DSRM administrative password and he called me again asking is there anyway on to reset it 😦 HMMMMM!!!

Well the following are the steps to reset the Directory Services Restore Mode Administrator Account Password incase you forget it 🙂

Log in to your Domain Controller with Administrative privilege

  1. Run => Ntdsutil
  2. At the Ntdsutil prompt type set dsrm password
  3. On the DSRM prompt type reset password on server null
  4. type the new password and confirm the password
  5. type q at the prompts to quit and exit command prompt

Now log in using the new password in Directory Services Restore Mode.       

Phew…

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One thought on “Windows Server 2000/2003 Active Directory Directory Services Restore Mode Password Recovery

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