Q. What's DJOIN?

A. DJOIN.EXE enables a new Windows 7/2008 R2 feature that allows the offline joining of a machine to a domain. In typical events, you join a computer to a domain and then reboot. Once the reboot is complete, the machine is part of the domain, but this reboot is required to join the domain. With DJOIN, you can join a machine to a domain while it's not booted by importing metadata into the offline machine, so that when it boots it's already domain-joined. The basic process is:

  1. Log on to a system that's already a member of the domain with an account that's allowed to join computers to the domain.
  2. Use djoin.exe to create a text file (the blob) that contains all information for the computer to join the domain when it's online. For example,

    djoin /provision /domain savilltech.net /machine savdalwks01 /savefile savdalwks01join.txt

  3. On the new computer, use djoin.exe to import the blob. This can be from Windows PE to access the offline computer's file system, or if it's a virtual mount, the Virtual Hard Drive. For example,

    djoin /requestodj /loadfile savdalwks01join.txt /windowspath x:\windows

    (where X is my mounted file system)
  4. Reboot the new computer when it’s connected to the network and it will be part of the domain.
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