2008R2 Server, Win7 Clients

I have a small domain with only three GPOs linked to the domain itself. First (link order 1) is the Default Domain Policy, which was created automatically and has settings for password policies. Second (link order 2) is a policy that describes drive maps, folder redirection, and some offline files. Third is for power users that adds additional drive maps and folder options. This (and only this) GPO has security filtering for the "power users" User Group, and contains only User Settings. The rest are set to Authenticated Users.

All of the User settings apply nicely in the order they are supposed to. However, the Computer Settings are only being applied from the Default Domain Policy as reported by gpresult. When I run gpupdate, the User Settings are applied successfully, but I get an error when it tries to update Computer Settings.

Computer policy could not be updated successfully. The following errors were encountered:

The processing of Group Policy failed. Windows could not obtain the name of a domain controller. This could be caused by a name resolution failure. Verify your Domain Name System (DNS) is configured and working correctly.

Any idea what could be wrong with my DNS settings? What DNS errors would cause User Settings to be applied but Computer Settings to not be? And how come Default Domain Policy GPO is not experiencing these problems?

  • How many DCs do you have? Can your clients communicate with all? Do all your DCs have consistent Netlogon/Sysvol shares (or are some files/folder missing on some DCs)?
    – Clint
    Mar 28, 2011 at 6:20

1 Answer 1


It sounds to me like your clients aren't using your DCs as their DNS servers. You should make sure that your DCs are indeed running DNS for your AD zone and that your clients are configured to use them.

If there was a change in your config, the old policies will still apply since they're cached on the clients, but they won't be able to update or check for new policy. If you're using DHCP, make sure that it's set to configure clients to use the proper DNS servers.

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