How To Use the Netdom.exe Utility to Rename a Computer in Windows XP


This article describes how to use the Netdom.exe utility (included in Windows XP Support Tools) to rename a computer that is a member of a Windows 2000 domain. This procedure can be performed either locally or remotely on the computer, which is being renamed. Also, the procedure does not require you to reset or manually re-create the computer account in the domain. The Netdom.exe utility has the ability to rename a computer that is a member of a domain. However, to rename the computer, you must be able to specify the user accounts that have local administrative permissions and the object of the computer account in Active Directory.

How to Rename a Computer

  1. Install Windows XP Support Tools from the Support\Tools folder on the Windows XP Professional CD-ROM.
  2. At a command prompt, type the following command.NOTE: The following command line has been wrapped to multiple lines to make it easier to read. Enter the command as a single line.

    netdom renamecomputer machine/newname:new_computername/userd:domainname\administrator_id/passwordd:* /usero:local_admin
    /passwordo:* /reboot:seconds before automatic reboot

    A description of the preceding command line is:

    • Machine is the current name of the computer.

    • New_computername is the name that the computer is going to have.

    • Domainname\administrator_id is the network basic input/output system (NetBIOS) domain name and the administrator identification (ID) of a user account that has administrative permissions to the computer object in the domain.

    • Local_admin is a user that has local administrative permissions, which can be the same account specified for /userd:

    • The asterisk symbol (*) is the value that is connected to the /passwordd: and /passwordo: parameters and specifies that the password should be typed with hidden characters when the command is submitted.

    • Time before automatic reboot in seconds is the amount of time before the computer restarts after renaming the computer. If this parameter is not specified, the computer must be restarted manually.
For example, you have a workstation named "Mycomputer" that is a member of a domain named "Mydomain". You want to change the workstation name to "Yourcomputer", and then automatically restart the workstation after 60 seconds. You can use the following command.

NOTE: The following command-line syntax has been wrapped to multiple lines to make it easier to read. You must enter the commands as a single line.
netdom renamecomputer mycomputer /newname:yourcomputer
/userD:mydomain\administrator /passwordd:*
/usero:administrator /passwordo:* /reboot:60
The following warning message may be displayed and you may be prompted as to whether or not you want to proceed:
This operation will rename the computer "Mycomputer" to "Yourcomputer". Certain services, such as certification authority, rely on a fixed computer name. If any services of this type are running on "Mycomputer", a computer name change would have an adverse impact.
If you do not want to be prompted to proceed, include the /force switch when you enter the netdom command in addition to the other parameters.


Article ID: 298593 - Last Review: Oct 21, 2008 - Revision: 1