Is the NetBIOS name of the domain different from the domain name?

Quick Answer:

To find out if the NetBIOS name is different from the FQDN, compare it to the first portion of the fully qualified domain name (FQDN). For example, if the NetBIOS name is COMPUTERNAME1 and the FQDN is COMPUTERNAME1.contoso.private, then they are the same. But how do you know what the NetBIOS name is? How do you know what the FQDN is? Where can you find these?

How to tell:

From Command Prompt:

From a Command Prompt window, type set.

  • The variable USERDNSDOMAIN displays the DNS domain name.
  • The variable USERDOMAIN displays the NetBIOS domain name.

From Computer Properties:

The following steps, from Understanding Disjoint Namespace Scenarios: Exchange 2010 SP1 Help, explain how to view the DNS host name, primary DNS suffix, DNS domain name, NetBIOS name, and NetBIOS domain name of a computer running Windows Server 2008.

  1. Click Start, right-click Computer, and then click Properties
  2. In System, the DNS host name and primary DNS suffix are displayed under Computer name, domain, and workgroup settings, next to Full computer name. The DNS domain name is displayed next to Domain.System
  3. Click Change settings.
  4. In System Properties, on the Computer Name tab, click Change.
  5. In Computer Name/Domain Changes, click More.
    Computer Name
  6. The primary DNS suffix is displayed under Primary DNS suffix of this computer. The NetBIOS computer name is displayed under NetBIOS computer name.
  7. To change the primary DNS suffix, type the new primary DNSsuffix under Primary DNS suffix of this computer, and then click OK.

Explanation:

This question came up while reading how to Configure Profile Synchronization (SharePoint 2010):

If the NetBIOS name of the domain differs from the domain name, the synchronization account must have Replicate Directory Changes permission on the cn=configuration container. See Grant Replicate Directory Changes permission on the cn=configuration container for instructions to grant this permission.

Take the example of computername1.contoso.private. I had trouble with this because "the NetBIOS name of the domain" equals "COMPUTERNAME1" and "the domain name," according to the steps below, equals "contoso.private" (COMPUTERNAME1 ≠ contoso.private). But, "a domain is any single portion of the DNS name that is separated from other parts of the DNS name by a period." Technet explains:

When you view a DNS name, a domain is any single portion of the DNS name that is separated from other parts of the DNS name by a period. For example, in the DNS domain name calif.noam.reskit.com, "calif," "noam," "reskit," and "com" each corresponds to a DNS domain... the domain name calif.noam.reskit.com represents a hierarchy in which reskit.com is the root (topmost) domain, noam is a child domain of reskit.com (noam.reskit.com), and calif is a child domain of noam.reskit.com. [ DNS Naming Conventions]

In our case, the DNS domain name is COMPUTERNAME1.contoso.private. 'COMPUTERNAME1,' 'contoso,' and 'private' each corresponds to a DNS domain. Thus "COMPUTERNAME1" may not be a fully qualified domain name, but it is a domain (a child of contoso).

References:

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2 Responses to Is the NetBIOS name of the domain different from the domain name?

  1. Pingback: User Profile Provisioning Domain netbios name is different than the FQDN of the domain « Sladescross's Blog

  2. Pingback: Part 1 – Configuring User Profile Synchronization Service (UPS) – Preparation & Problems | Dynamite!

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