Besides the interactive mode (described above), the Active Directory Installation Wizard has an unattended mode similar to the unattended setup of the operating system. All parameters needed for the wizard to operate are written in an answer file that is launched from the command prompt by entering the following string:
As in the case of the interactive mode, the wizard's window will display all ongoing operations having to do with promoting/demoting the server. If a parameter is missing or incorrect, the wizard will ask the operator for the required or correct value. You may then enter the value and continue the process.
The description of keys used in the answer file for installing Active Directory (the [DCInstall] section) can be found in the "Microsoft Windows 2000 Guide to Unattended Setup" (see the Resource Kit links in Appendix A, or the Q223757 and Q224390 articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base). This file (unattend.doc) is copied to the folder where the Windows 2000 Resource Kit is installed, or can be manually extracted from the Windows 2000 operating system CD. In the Windows Explorer, open the \Support\Tools\Deploy.cab file and copy unattend.doc to any location.
The Active Directory can be installed in unattended mode immediately after a Windows 2000/.NET Server setup, or independently at any moment.
For example, to demote a DC (not the last DC in the domain!) to a member server, you need only specify the following parameters (enter the values appropriate to your installation) in the answer file:
[DCInstall] UserName = DomAdmin Password = dadm123 UserDomain = net.dom AdministratorPassword = locAdmin123 RebootOnSuccess = Yes
Where the first three parameters are the credentials of a domain administrator, and AdministratorPassword is the local administrator password. The last parameter indicates that the computer must reboot after successful demotion.
After the wizard completes the requested operation, all specified passwords will be deleted from the answer file. Therefore, you must enter them again if you want to repeat the operation.
To create an additional domain controller in a domain (net.dom), the following parameters are necessary:
[DCInstall] UserName = DomAdmin Password = dadm123 UserDomain = net.dom ReplicaDomainDNSName = net.dom SiteName = NET-Site RebootOnSuccess = Yes
SiteName is not a required parameter. It is used here because the domain is located in a site that has a non-default name (the default site name is Default-First-Site).
The following answer file will create the child domain subdom of the parent domain net.dom (notice that an enterprise administrator's credentials are necessary in this case):
[DCInstall] UserName = EntAdmin Password = eadm12345 UserDomain = net.dom ReplicaOrNewDomain = Domain ChildName = subdom DomainNetBiosName = SUBDOM ParentDomainDNSName = net.dom SiteName = NET-Site RebootOnSuccess = Yes