Changing the root domain name of a Windows Server 2022 server


A few weeks ago I deployed a new Windows Server infrastructure for a small company, with a domain controller.

I made a mistake by choosing .net as my root domain name, a domain I was already using to point to a Synology NAS, a NVR and to a reverse-proxy for other on-prem services. Thanks to the UniFi router’s pinhole NAT, I could use FQDNs indifferently from the LAN or from outside. But now .net means different things depending on where we are, and we have to use private IP addresses from the premises.

All in all, I now want to use a subdomain. I read in the meantime that was a convention or a common recommendation. What do you think?

While searching I learned that you indeed can change the root domain name, but everything I found was for earlier versions of Windows Server. I couldn’t find any documentation, not even on, that explicitly mentions Windows Server 2022. Since this is a critical operation, even though I plan to do a snapshot of my VM before any manipulation, I am looking for a reliable source for Windows Server 2022. Do you know one?

Do you have any other advice regarding this issue?

I thank you in advance! :slight_smile:

From what I found when I was searching for similar… While it can be renamed, the general recommendation was that you may want to set up a new domain. Same probably applies to changing your IP scheme for an existing domain, it looks like you can do it, but it might be more trouble in the long run. That said, I have not done any name changes (may try it though).

As far as information, most of the old stuff applies to newer versions unless it specifically says it doesn’t work. Not a lot of change between server 2019 and server 2022 for these basic functions, I don’t think the functional level of the DC has changed, but I’ll find out later this summer when I finish physical to virtual moves and bring all my servers up to 2022.

Correct me if I’m wrong, but my understanding is that setting up a new domain would indeed be easy on the DC VM side, but would require a lot of work on the client side and would be disruptive for users: either join the new domain on the RDS VM, for users’ virtual desktops and for users’ computers, so starting from scratch with new profiles, or mess with that Microsoft migration tool for each of them. (Now called USMT?)

Thank you very much for telling me that something that works on Windows Server 2019 has a good chance of working on Windows Server 2022. Because if so, from what I’ve seen, the “rendom” method does require quite a few steps and a lot of attention, but is doable. And by doing a snapshot before starting on a Sunday morning, it seems to me that I am guaranteed that everything will still work on Monday morning, either after restoring the snapshot if something goes wrong, or after successfully changing the root domain name. Or am I missing something?

I thank you for your advice, but in my context of an environment unfortunately already in production, doesn’t it seem more relevant to change the root domain name? Believe me I will think twice the next time I have to choose a root domain name! :wink:

Do you have an article on, a third party tutorial or a YouTube video to recommend?