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(geek alert!) ADS annoyance

So I've had a Windows Domain since NT4 Service Pack 4 was new. Originally it had one Domain Controller; a 486 DX4-120 (the first computer I ever built myself). Because it was so little, when I got around to having Server 2000 and Active Directory, I simply started over. I've been running the same Active Directory now for 8 or 9 years; its had servers replaced due to hardware failures (including a PSU explosion!), but the AD data goes back a long way.

My Domain now has two DCs and is dependent on my Linux server for the DNS side of AD; this means that using AD requires two machines to be running (the Linux/DNS box and a Windows/AD/DC box).

Now, because I'm living in the same room as the servers, I don't have the machines turned on very often... in fact, when I first moved back here, I had all sorts of hassle because I'd exceeded the Tombstone time (60 days) and the Domain wouldn't synchronise. Having had that issue and managed to fix it, I increased the Tombstone time to 180 days, figuring that I'd remember to turn things on and allow Replication to occur sometime within a 6 month period.

I also made it a rule that I when I run the Domain, I would always run both DCs and ensure that Replication had occurred before putting the Domain back to bed.

So, this morning I figured I'd probably better remove my soon-to-be-Win7 laptop from the Domain. This, I thought, would take about 10 minutes, and 5 of that would be booting things up and letting Replication have a chance to happen before I started doing stuff to it.

Could I have been more wrong..?!?

Apparently, I've exceded my Tombstone again (but not in the same way as last time, atleast, the recovery process was totally different).

The last time I had the Domain booted was in October, so I am significantly inside the 180 days... so I don't have a clue why this has happened... except that Event Viewer seems to think my Tombstone is set to 60 days...

Anyway, thanks to everything is now replicating again... but I still have no idea why the Tombstone time is being seen as 60 days.

Still, I now have my laptop deleted from the AD and everything looks to be working fine again :-)

(shame it took well over an hour, including Googling time)