W2K AD domain time issue

Microsoft Windows
Network protocols
SQL Server
Business group wants to test software package/app behavior through several business cycles, intending to increment date on a group of domain member servers over the course of a couple of months. Has anyone ever done something similar without breaking network connectivity, i.e., logging on to domain, accessing network resources, etc.?

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A point of clarification please.

As I understand your question, you have a server test bed under A/D, and you want to force the dates ahead manually, so that different points of the business cycle (calendar-wise) can be seen. For example, producing monthly reports within days of each other, and quarterly reports within weeks.

If they are hoping to do this on a production network, they are out of their minds. If it is an isolated test bed, then they might be able to do that if the date increments are small enough. They MUST fit into the Tombstone lifetime at the very least, which I believe is 24 hours.

I don’t know enough about the internals of A/D to say for certain, but I do recall learning shortly after NT 4.0 came out back in 1996 that a given system which did not communicate with the Domain Controller for some period of time had to be removed from and added back to the domain.

A fair number of Google searches for “Increment AD Clock” etc. failed to produce much, but I only spent 15 minutes on it.

Good Luck,


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  • Howard2nd
    I agree with Bob. It will kill production systems and disrupt the network. AD and DNS replications are time sensitive and you can break AD with severe discontinuities. Very appropriate question considering that this weekend we do the semiannual 'daylight savings cha-cha'. If you take one server that is not on a network and run several virtual machines then you could reset the clock two or three times a day and get accelerated calendar, BUT watch for the gotcha factor. Some software is real bad about assumptions, i.e. Microsoft security center will thow an alarm and even diable McAfee AntVirus if the last update 'timestamp' gets to far behind the system 'timestmp'. Good luck.
    30 pointsBadges:

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