MCSA Servers

Create & Deploy Active Directory Snapshot in Windows Server 2016

A Snapshot is the exact copy of the original contents and configurations that is the easiest and cheapest way to create and deploy it on the additional domain controller. Like you can take a snapshot of Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS) and you use the snapshot for occasional usages like deploying on an additional domain controller, not like often tasks like backup. In this article, I will take a snapshot of my root domain controller (DC), which is the first domain controller of my active directory. Then, I will deploy the snapshot on the additional (DC). Snapshot is used for adding additional DC in remote sites, not in Local Area Networks (LAN). When you create a snapshot from active directory and save the files to a DVD or flash memory, then deploy it on the remote site on the new domain controller then you’ll have the exact contents and configurations on the new DC. So here first we will create then deploy Active Directory snapshots in Windows Server 2016.

Remember: This is the second part of adding an additional domain controller to existing domain, if you haven’t read that article, you ought to read that first. Click on the link below for reading the previous part, then continue reading this article.

Watch out: How to Add Additional Domain Controller to Existing Domain

Create Active Directory Snapshot on Current DC

Before getting started, make sure both, the current DC and additional DC needs to be the member of the same domain and both of them should be active or approached by you. So that you can take a snapshot from current DC and deploy it on the new DC.

Take Snapshot through PowerShell

1. Right-click on PowerShell icon and choose Run as administrator option due to run the PowerShell with administrative privileges.

2. Launch PowerShell as administrator and create the IFM (Install From Media) media. This media is a snapshot of AD DS. Now Run the ntdsutil.exe cmdlet to run the program, therefore, type ntdsutil.exe and press Enter key.

Ntdsutil.exe cmdlet
Ntdsutil.exe cmdlet

3. Type activate instance ntds, because it focuses the program on the installed AD DS instance.

Activate instance ntds cmdlet
Activate instance NTDS cmdlet

4. Type ifm to create the IFM (Install From Image) media.

Ifm cmdlet
Ifm cmdlet

5. Now you should decide you want full snapshot or not, to create a full snapshot type: create sysvol full c:\snapshot. The C:\snapshot is the path where I save the files, the program creates a folder by the name snapshot in the C:\ drive. When snapshot process completed, close the PowerShell window.

create sysvol full
create sysvol full

Finally the snapshot is ready to be deployed on the next domain controller. So, we will move to the new server and continue our deploying there. I’ve copied the files in a flash memory due to making the deployment easy then paste the files on the new DC’s desktop to use later.

Deploy Active Directory Snapshot on Additional DC

Snapshot Deployment

It is the time to turn on the new machine and get it ready to be promoted to new domain controller.

1. Install Active Directory Domain Services from Server Manager. If you don’t know how to do that, please refer to this link:

See this: Install Active Directory Domain Services on Windows Server

2. When the installation finished, click on Promote this server to a domain controller hyperlink.

Promote this server to a domiain controller hyperlink
Promote this server to a domain controller hyperlink

Or maybe you’ve closed the window and you don’t see the window containing hyperlink, don’t worry. Click on the flag on the top of the window, you can see the hyperlink.

Promote this server to domain controller hyperlink
Promote this server to domain controller hyperlink

3.  Select Add domain controller to existing domain option. This option means that we have a domain and we just want to add an additional domain controller in the domain. Be sure that you’ve logged on by a user name who have the right to do these tasks then hit Next.

Add domain controller to existing domain
Add domain controller to existing domain

5. All options are disabled yet. Click on Allow domain controller reinstall to permit the domain controller, to be reinstalled on the new machine. Then enter a DSRM password then hit Next.

Allow domain controller reinstall
Allow domain controller reinstall

6. Select Install from media option to be enabled to use your AD DS snapshot. Then click on three dotted button, find the media path that you’ve the snapshot inside. Verify the IFM media by clicking on Verify button then hit Next.

Install from media (IFM)
Install from media (IFM)

7. In the Paths and Review options pages we have nothing to do, so just click on Next button. In the Prerequisites Check page click on Install button to install the domain controller. When domain controller installed, the machine will be restarted or restart manually if the server didn’t restarted automatically.

Install Active Directory
Install Active Directory


Consequently the new machine is domain controller in your domain. So log in to new domain controller, you’ll see the same contents as the previous domain controller. Active Directory snapshot is an easy and quick way than WAN link. If you used WAN link like internet, replication between two servers took long time. For any sort of question feel free and leave a comment. We will respond you as soon as possible.

MCSA Servers

Install Active Directory Domain Services on Windows Server 2016

The Active Directory Domain Services is the feature of creating domain and managing it, but it’s never had been easy to do in a new platform due to many changes or having no experience of it. Surely you need some steps to follow to install and configure Active Directory Domain Services(ADDS) fully by following up the steps here. No matter if you have installed your server now or if you are doing it on a VM machine you can do it now, so let’s get started.

Install Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS)

To get started, first you have to install it then setup a domain controller.

Before starting, make sure that you have renamed the server properly and have given static IP address to it. If you don’t know how to do it then see the instructions below.

To setup static IP address open Run (Windows + r) type Ncpa.cpl and hit enter, when the Network Connections opened select the network and right click on it choose Properties. Now select Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPV4) and click on Properties. 

Setup IP

When the window appears, select Use the following IP address then enter an IP address, Subnet maskPreferred DNS server addresses and click ok.

Enter IP Address

1. Now to install AD DS open Server Manager and click on Add Roles and features.


2. Read the important notes and click Next to verify and continue the installation.


3. Here let the Role-based be selected, just click Next.


4. Select the server you want to install AD on it then click Next.


5. Now select Active Directory Domain Services then click Add Features to include the required features within AD and click Next.

While installing AD it will install some other features with it such as:

  • DFS Namespace
  • DFS Replication
  • File Replication Services

6. Leave the features window by default and click Next.


7. Read all the info about the AD and click Next.



8. Now the ADDS is ready to install, click Install to begin the installation.


9. Wait for the installation to complete, then click on Promote this server to a domain controller.




Configure Server to Domain Controller

1. When the window opened click on Promote this server to a domain controller, now click on Add a new forest then type the domain name in the Root domain name blank and click Next.




2. Let the Domain Controller options be by default and type a password for DSRM then click Next.




Notice: Set the Forest functional level the highest so your environment can support and make sure that all the domain controller are supported with that operating system.

3. Ignore the DNS delegation warning because its due to not installed DNS server on the server, and click Next.




4. Now verify the NetBIOS name and change it if necessary then click Next.




Note: NetBIOS name is a Network Basic Input/output system that allow applications on separate computers to communicate over a local network and can be required by some applications and network devices.

5. Specify the location of AD DS database, log files, SYSVOL and change it if necessary then click Next.




6. Now review all the configuration you’ve done then click Next.




7. The configuration is done now, click Install to begin the installation and ignore the warnings.

Note: It will install DNS role too.


After installing the system will reboot automatically, when the system restarted the domain will work successfully and you can log in and see the domain features.


That’s all. If you have any question regarding this feel free to ask us.