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Sunday, September 8, 2013

Unable to re-join a computer to a Windows Domain

Last week a co-worker had an interesting (this means frustrating) problem.  The hard drive in a Windows XP SP3 desktop computer was bad.  He replaced it and then restored the backup image using Symantec System Recovery.

Unfortunately it wouldn't let him login to the Active Directory domain after the restore.  We have run into this before and in the past we simply login to the PC as a local administrator, un-join the computer from the domain and then re-join it to the domain.

This time, however, when he un-joined from the domain, it didn't really do it.  The computer was still listed in Active Directory.  So he manually deleted it from Active Directory.

When he went to re-join the computer to the domain, he kept getting this message:

"Multiple connections to a server or shared resource by the same user, using more than one user name, are not allowed. Disconnect all previous connections to the server or shared resource and try again."

We repeatedly used this command to see if there were any active connections:
net use

And then this command to delete all connections (even though there were none listed):
net use * /delete

We ultimately figured out the issue was previously mapped network printers were in the list and this was preventing us from re-joining the domain.  We not only had to delete these network printers from the Printers list, but also had to walk the Windows Registry and delete all references to these printers.  Once done, we rebooted the PC and then successfully re-joined the Windows Active Directory Domain.

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