Exchange 2007: An Active Directory error 0x8007203A occurred while searching for domain controllers in domain [domain name]

In my test environment, the following error occurred during the Readiness Check of my Exchange 2007 installation:

Setup encountered a problem while validating the state of Active Directory: An Active Directory error 0x8007203A occurred while searching for domain controllers in domain [domain name] : The server is not operational.

My test environment was as follows:

  • One domain controller, running Windows 2003 R2 SP2, 32bit
    • Active Directory
    • DNS
    • DHCP
  • One member server, running Windows 2003 R2 SP2, 32bit
    • Exchange 2007 (trying to install 😉 )

The error 0x8007203A was quite strange, because I was logged on to the domain on my member server.
I took the following steps to solve the problem:

  • Check the Eventlog for errors (in my case, everything was fine)
  • Make sure the member server joined the domain
  • Make sure the DNS addresses are pointed to the DC
  • Create a new user in Active Directory with Domain Administrator rights
  • Re-join the domain (join a workgroup, reboot, and join the domain again)

The final step, seemed to solve the problem. Pretty weird, but oh well, at least I continue the testing phase 🙂

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When you add a remove and add a computer to the domain, the acct ends up in the “computers” container. I moved my exch server computer acct back to this container and life was good!


Hey, nice article.
I have the same problem and my error was strictly connected to my new DC that I was trying to install Ex 2010 on. My new DC is Global Cagalog server for a child domain in my AD. The problem was that my primary domain DNS zones were not replicated on this server. I’ve added the primary DNS zone and now waiting to replicate. Hope this isse will be gone after it’s done.

Eric Fang

Thanks mate. I got the same issue, and it fixed it easily by “re-join” the domain.

Ayman Bukhary

Thank u , it is correct solution

Mustafa Qarizada

Gr8 Solution just rejoin to domain and it works.

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