Active Directory Replication ( Part 1)

Active Directory is made up of one or more directory partitions, or naming contexts. A directory partition is a contiguous subtree of Active Directory that forms a unit of replication between domain controllers.

In Active Directory a single server always holds at least three directory partitions:

The schema
The configuration (replication   topology and related metadata)
One or more per-domain directory   partitions (subtrees containing domain-specific objects in the directory)

For example, domain controller “RXDC1″ from domain “Child.remotex.com” has the following directory partitions (assuming a “remotex.com” domain exists as the root domain and RXDC1 is not a Global Catalog server):

Schema (CN=Schema,CN=Configuration,DC=remotex,DC=com)
Configuration   (CN=Configuration,DC=remotex,DC=com)
Domain child (DC=child,DC=remotex,DC=com)

Domain controller “RXDC2″ from domain “Child2.remotex.com” has the following directory partitions (assume RXDC2 is not a Global Catalog server):

Schema (CN=Schema,CN=Configuration,DC=remotex,DC=com)
Configuration (CN=Configuration,DC=remotex,DC=com)
Domain Child2 (DC=child2,DC=remotex,DC=com)

The schema and configuration are replicated to every domain controller in a given forest. The per-domain directory partition is replicated only to domain controllers for that domain, except when the target server is a Global Catalog server. In this example, RXDC1 and RXDC2 replicate the Schema and Configuration directory partitions with each other, but do not replicate the per-domain directory partitions because they are from different domains. Domain controllers from the same domain replicate all three directory partitions with each other.

For each of the methods below, the “source” server describes the domain controller that replicates the changes to a replication partner. The “target” domain controller receives the changes.

Initiating Replication Using the Sites and Services Manager Snap-in

1. Click Start , point to Programs   , point to Administrative Tools , and then click Active Directory   Sites and Services .
2. Expand the Sites container   in the left pane. Expand the container that represents the name of the site   containing the target server that needs to be synchronized with its replication   partners.
3. Expand the Servers container,   and then expand the target server to display the NTDS Settings object   (an object that represents settings for the domain controller).
4. Click the NTDS Settings object.   The connection objects in the right pane represent the target server’s direct   replication partners.
5. Right-click a connection object in   the right pane, and then click Replicate Now . Windows initiates replication   of any changes from the source server (the server represented by the   connection object) to the target server for all directory partitions the   target server is configured to replicate from the source server.

Initiating replication Using Repadmin.exe

Repadmin.exe is a command-line tool from the Support Tools

1. Determine the name of the target   server that needs to be synchronized.
2. At a command prompt, use   Repadmin.exe to determine the target server’s direct replication partners by   typing the following command:repadmin /showreps target_server_name   If the target server can be   reached, it displays output similar to the following sample. In this example,   RXDC1 and RXDC2 are now in the same domain, “Child.remotex.com.”Pune\RXDC1
DSA Options : (none)
objectGuid : 4b29649-f9ab-11d2-b17f-00c9283cb503
invocationID: 45k10b0b-f9ab-11d2-98b8-0000f45a982b

==== INBOUND NEIGHBORS ======================================

CN=Schema,CN=Configuration,DC=remotex,DC=com

Pune\RXDC2 via RPC
objectGuid: d2e3badd-e07a-11d2-b573-0000f87a546b
Last attempt @ 2013-05-03 18:07.04 was successful.

CN=Configuration,DC=remotex,DC=com

Pune\RXDC2 via RPC
objectGuid: d2e3badd-e07a-11d2-b573-0000f87a546b
Last attempt @ 2013-05-03 18:07.05 was successful.

DC=child2,DC=remotex,DC=com

Pune\RXDC2 via RPC
objectGuid: d2e3badd-e07a-11d2-b573-0000f87a546b
Last attempt @ 2013-05-03 18:07.09 was successful.
(Other data excluded because it does not pertain to this article.)

Under the Inbound Neighbors   section of the output, the direct replication partners for each directory   partition are identified along with the status of the last replication.

3. Find the directory partition that   needs synchronization and locate the source server with which the target will   be synchronized. Note the objectGuid of the source server.
4. Use Repadmin.exe to initiate replication   by typing the following command:repadmin /sync directory_partition   target_server_name source_server_objectGuid For example, to initiate replication   on RXDC1 so that changes are replicated from RXDC2:repadmin /sync dc=child2,dc=remotex,dc=com   RXDC1 d2e3badd-e07a-11d2-b573-0000f87a546b

If successful, Repadmin.exe   displays the following message:

ReplicaSync() from source:   d2e3badd-e07a-11d2-b573-0000f87a546b, to dest: RXDC1 is successful.

Optionally, you can use the following switches on the command line:

/force: Overrides the normal replication   schedule.
/async: Starts the replication   event. Repadmin.exe does not wait for the replication event to finish.
/full: Forces a full replication of   all objects from the destination DSA.

Initiating Replication Using Active Directory Replication Monitor

1.

Support Tools which includes Active   Directory Replication Monitor (Replmon.exe).

2. Start Active Directory Replication   Monitor and click Add Site/Server on the Edit menu. Use the   “Add Site or Server” Wizard to add the target server to the view.
3. Replmon.exe identifies the directory   partitions and displays them as child nodes to the target server in the left   pane.
4. Find and expand the directory   partition that needs to be synchronized. All domain controllers listed for a given directory partition are source servers, but direct replication partners   are displayed with an icon that represents two network-connected servers.   Direct replication partners can also be identified by right-clicking a server   and clicking Properties . The Properties dialog box displays the   source server as a Direct Replication Partner, a Transitive Replication   Partner, or a BridgeHead Connection (also a direct replication connection).
5. Right-click the direct replication   partner, and then click Synchronize Replica . Replmon.exe initiates replication   and reports the success or failure of the request.

 

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