Step-By-Step: Manually Removing A Domain Controller Server

Use of DCPROMO is still the proper way to remove a DC server in an infrastructure. Certain situations, such as server crash or failure of the DCPROMO option, require manual removal of the DC from the system by cleaning up the server's metadata. The following detailed steps will help you accomplish this:

Removing metadata via Active Directory Users and Computers

  1. Log in to DC server as Domain/Enterprise administrator and navigate to Server Manager > Tools > Users and Computers
  2. Expand the Domain > Domain Controllers
  1. Right click on the you need to manually remove and click Delete
  1. Click Yes to confirm within the Domain Services dialog box
  1. In next dialog box, select This is permanently offline and can no longer be demoted using the Active Directory Domain Services Installation Wizard (DCPROMO) and click Delete
  1. If the is global catalog server, in next window click Yes to continue with deletion
  2. If the domain controller holds any FSMO roles in next window, click Ok to move them to the domain controller which is available

Removing the DC server instance from the Active Directory Sites and Services

  1. Go to Server manager > Tools > Active Directory Sites and Services
  2. Expand the Sites and go to the server which need to remove
  3. Right click on the server you which to remove and click Delete
  1. Click Yes to confirm

Remove metadata via ntdsutil

  1. Right Click on Start > Command Prompt (admin)
  2. Type ntdsutil and enter
  1. You are then presented with the metadata cleanup prompt
  1. Next type remove selected server servername


Replace servername with domain Controller server you wish to remove

  1. Click Yes to proceed when presented with the warning window
  2. Execute the quit command twice to exit out of the console


This post was originally posted on CANITPRO.NET and was co-authored by Microsoft MVP Dishan Francis

The following video provides examples of other ways to monitor on-premises and in cloud servers:


This article was originally published by Microsoft’s System Center Configuration Manager Blog. You can find the original article here.