Troubleshooting with NCR: Timesaving Tips from NCR Experts

Tips from NCR Experts

I took an NT Server that was acting as a Primary Domain Controller (PDC) offline, and the Backup Domain Controller (BDC) became the PDC. When I brought the original PDC back up, both domain controllers acted as the PDC. How can I fix this problem?

You need to demote the original PDC to the BDC. To demote the original PDC, follow these steps:

1. Go to Control Panel, Services; select Net Logon; and click Stop. Alternatively, go to the original BDC and stop the NetLogon service at the DOS prompt, with the command

net stop netlogon

2. Click Start, Programs, Administrative Tools, and select Server Manager. Choose the machine name of the original PDC and then select Demote To Backup Domain Controller from the Computer drop-down menu. Completing this step will change the original PDC to a BDC.

3. Go to Control Panel, Services; select Net Logon; and click Start. Alternatively, you can restart the NetLogon service on the original BDC at the DOS prompt, with the command

net start netlogon

4. Resynchronize the domain from Server Manager.

(You can promote the original PDC to PDC using Step 2. You need to demote the current PDC to a BDC immediately after this step.)

If this process does not work (possibly because of security ID--SID--corruption), you can perform the following steps. However, try this resolution as a last resort; Microsoft does not support it. Using the Registry editor incorrectly can cause serious systemwide problems, and you may need to reinstall NT to correct them.

1. Physically go to the domain controller that you do not want to be the PDC, and log on as Administrator.

2. To start the Registry editor, click Start, Run; enter regedt32 in the Open box; and click OK.

3. Select HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SECURITY. By default, the Administrator has Special Access rights on the SECURITY key. You need to change these rights to Full Control. To make this change, implement the following steps:

a. Select Security, Permissions from the menu bar.

b. Select the Administrator's name.

c. In the Type of Access drop-down box, choose Full Control and select the Replace Permission on Existing Subkeys check box. This configuration gives the Administrator full control over the SECURITY key and all subkeys.

d. Return the SECURITY key permissions to Special Access at the end of this process. Select the Administrator's name, and under Special Access, Other, select WRITE DAC and READ CONTROL. Return to this step after changing the Registry value in Step 5.

4. Select HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SECURITY\Policy\PolSrvRo. This key has the field <No Name>: REG_NONE. Double-click this field to edit its values.

5. Change the value from 03000000 to 02000000, and exit the Registry. Changing this value sets the machine as a BDC instead of a PDC.

6. Reboot the server.

7. Resynchronize the domain, from Server Manager.

I have found that the Windows NT Server FTP service does not function correctly when I access it with Netscape browser software. The error typically occurs when the home directory is a subdirectory rather than the root directory of a drive. I frequently get the error message "Can't find the file <filename> in the root directory." What causes this error?

This error probably occurs because you have the NT FTP service configured to output DOS-style directories, and Netscape uses UNIX conventions when it navigates. This configuration explains why the error typically does not occur when your home directory is the root of a drive and you are accessing a file.

To fix this problem, you need to configure the service to output UNIX-style directories. Run regedt32 (the NT Registry editor) to add or modify the MsdosDirOutput Registry value at HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE on <FTP SERVERUNCNAME or Local Machine>\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\ftpsvc\Parameters.

To add the value, follow these steps:

1. Select Edit, and then Add Value.

2. In the Value Name box, enter the name exactly as follows: MsdosDirOutput.

3. In the Data Type drop-down box, set the data type to REG_DWORD.

4. Click OK.

5. When prompted for the string, enter 0 for UNIX listings.

6. Click OK.

7. From Control Panel, Services, stop and restart your FTP Server service (you don't need to reboot).

If you're running Internet Information Server (IIS), you don't need to modify the Registry. To make this change, start IIS, click the FTP server properties, go to the Directories tab, and select UNIX under Directory Listing Style.

Replacing or upgrading applications within the NT operating environment sometimes invalidates an NT service pack. What causes this problem, and how can I fix it?

During the replacement or installation of a software component (such as SQL Server or Systems Management Server--SMS), the files needed for the upgrade come from the application source, which may predate the service pack. During the application installation, some of the files the service pack installed may be overwritten with older versions from the application source. Reapplying the service pack after an upgrade or software product installation will correct this condition.

My server hangs approximately once every two months and displays the fatal message, "NT Blue Screen Error ... STOP 0x0000007F (0x00000000, 0x00000000, 0x00000000, 0x00000000) Unexpected_Kernel_Mode_Trap." What causes this problem?

An incorrect version of BHNT.SYS causes this problem when you use the Network Monitor on a Windows NT Server 3.51 system with SMS 1.1. If NT is installed on a FAT partition and the Network Monitor is not started automatically, you can reapply the latest service pack to the system. Alternatively, you can perform the following steps:

1. Go to the <winnt-root>\system32 directory, and find the file BHNT.SYS. Rename this file BHNT.OLD.

2. Go to the latest service pack, uncompress the BHNT.SYS file, and place the file in the system32 directory.

3. Reboot the system.

My Sound Blaster 16 sound card works fine with Windows 95, but it doesn't work with Windows NT 4.0. What can I do?

Win95 detects Plug and Play (PnP) devices, but NT 4.0 does not. Therefore, you must manually install the Sound Blaster card driver to use it.

Go to and select the Creative Labs Sound Blaster 1.x, Pro, 16 driver from the list. Accept the default settings. To add the driver in NT, click Start, Settings, Control Panel, Multimedia. On the Devices tab, click Add. When you're prompted, shut down and restart the system.

I'm trying to install Windows NT Workstation 4.0 on an ISA PC, but NT doesn't see my hard disk. What can I do?

If the system you're installing NT on does not support Logical Block Addressing (LBA), make sure the partition where you want to install NT is less than 540MB. You may also be able to get an updated BIOS from your PC manufacturer to include LBA.

If your system supports LBA, make sure that Auto Detect is not enabled. Get the hard disk specifications for cylinders, heads, and sectors--this information is usually on the label of the hard disk. In your hardware setup, configure your computer to use a custom-defined hard disk with the cylinders, heads, and sectors to match your disk.

After updating to Windows NT 4.0 Service Pack 3 (SP3), I started getting intermittent blue screens of death. I tried to uninstall SP3, but even after reinstalling NT I still have the service pack files on my system. How can I remove them without reformatting the disk?

If you selected the uninstall option when you applied the service pack, you can run Update.exe from the service pack and select Uninstall a previously installed Service Pack. If you cleared the uninstall option when you installed the service pack, the files you need for the uninstall aren't available to you. To remove the unwanted service pack, execute the following steps:

1. On the same system, install NT 4.0 in a new directory.

2. Apply SP3, and select the Uninstall option. This step will create a hidden directory under your NT root directory, <WINNT_ROOT>\$NtServicePackUninstall$.

3. Copy the <WINNT_ROOT>\$NtServicePackUninstall$ directory from the second install to the original <WINNT_ROOT>. Boot the original install of NT, run Update.exe from SP3, and select Uninstall a previously installed Service Pack. This step will use the $NtService PackUninstall$ files to replace the current files. It will also remove all indications that you are running NT 4.0 SP3.

I'm trying to add Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol (PPTP) to my Windows NT 4.0 server, but my server doesn't offer the option. I have a second NT 4.0 server that already has PPTP. Why isn't this option available on my other server?

An error is in the %SystemRoot%\System32\Oemnxppp.inf file that NT installation supplies. It does not include the option to add PPTP to a Microchannel Architecture (MCA) server. Edit the Oemnxppp.inf file to add MCA to the \[PlatformsSupported\] section as follows:


OptionType = NetTransport





"Jazz-Internal Bus"






I have two Windows NT servers, but the larger one is booting very slowly. At the blue Kernel initializing screen, one dot appears, and then the system hangs. The boot eventually completes, but takes as long as 40 minutes. Why?

Multiple SCSI adapters using the same IRQ may cause your problem. Although sharing IRQs is legal, you need to dedicate an IRQ to the controller connected to the SCSI hard disk that NT boots from. Also, be sure to disable the BIOS on the controllers that are not connected to this disk.

A drive in my software RAID went bad. I replaced the drive, but when I tried to regenerate the stripe set, I received the error message, "The drive cannot be locked for exclusive use. Please check to see if some applications are currently accessing the drive. If so, close them and try again."

As far as I know, I've stopped all the services that access the drive, but I'm still getting the error. How can I recover my system?

You're on the right track. Some applications can have files on the drive that your system is still accessing. The drive might have launched the application and the application is still open, the application might have left some files open, or the application might have created shares that other computers access.

If the error still occurs after you shut down all possible services and applications, try the following steps to eliminate the possibility of an application accessing the volume:

1. Log on as Administrator. In Administrative Tools, Disk Administrator, select the stripe set and click Tools, Assign Drive Letter. Select Do not assign a drive letter.

2. Reboot the server.

3. After logging on, go to Disk Administrator. Select the stripe set volume, and while pressing the Ctrl key, select Free Space on the replaced drive. Click Fault Tolerance, Regenerate, to begin regeneration of the stripe set.

4. After regeneration, select the stripe set and click on Tools, Assign Drive Letter. Reassign the original drive letter to the volume.

5. Reboot the server.

I have a domain with several Windows NT workstation clients and one NT Primary Domain Controller (PDC). I have a network printer connected to an HP JetDirect, which uses the Data Link Control (DLC) protocol. I have the printer shared at my server so that everyone can use it.

My problem is that each client can print to the printer, but only one client can print at a time. The server locks out all the other clients until the client that is printing is rebooted. The jobs of the locked-out clients appear to be printing but are actually sitting in the print queue. I'm not getting any error messages. What's happening?

You have the clients configured to print directly to the HP JetDirect port and not to the NT shared printer, so the first client to access the printer is in control until the client is rebooted. To fix this problem, you need to remove the DLC protocol and the HP JetAdmin software from each client.

To remove the DLC protocol, go to Control Panel, Network; select the DLC protocol, and click Remove. Repeat these steps for the HP JetAdmin software. Click OK, and reboot the client. Connect each client to the NT shared printer in Control Panel, Printers.

One of my Windows NT 3.51 workstations has an unusual problem. Some users can log on and use the workstation with no problems, but when others log on, the system immediately shuts down. The users have their own logon script, so why aren't some scripts working?

The user account does not have permissions to the %SystemRoot%\System32 directory. To fix this problem, go to the %SystemRoot%\System32 directory. You will find that the user accounts that are causing the shutdowns have restricted permissions. This situation prevents NT from executing. Change the permissions to give all users Read and Execute permissions on the NT files.

My company has offices in several countries, and we recently upgraded everyone to Windows NT 4.0. Now our offices in South America can't run our backup scripts. They get the Spanish equivalent of the error message, "The command line <parameters following the command "NTBACKUP"> contains an invalid parameter." The same script runs fine on our US servers. Why?

Ntbackup.exe in the Spanish version of NT 4.0 is causing this problem. Fortunately, a fix is already available for it. Apply Service Pack 2 (SP2) or SP3 for NT 4.0, or expand Ntbackup.ex_ from SP2 and replace the original file with the new expanded one.

Corrections to this Article:
  • "Troubleshooting with NCR," was very informative. However, I found one technical inaccuracy in the first Q&A (promoting a Backup Domain Controller—BDC—when the Primary Domain Controller —PDC—is offline). Step 1 and Step 3 are not required. When the second PDC comes online, its NetLongon service will fail to start; after you demote this machine, the NetLogon service will be started. —Deborah Lester Jones [email protected]
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