Windows Server 2008 machine that had 10 locally networked computers that used to be logged in with domain, everything was working just fine until HDD on the server died and all the user groups and accounts wore lost (leaving machines that connected to server locked in), unfortunately back-up's wore not made and that left other machines unable to connect to the newly installed server. Is there a way to recover data on local machines or to reconnect them to the new installation without losing client data. Any help will be greatly appreciated.

  • The user can still lon into their computer ? roaming profile not set ? – yagmoth555 Dec 21 '16 at 16:57
  • Not set unfortunately – ukaric Dec 21 '16 at 17:03
  • Well, it's fortunately :) as it mean your user profile are local to each workstation. You lost only network share and data local to the server it mean – yagmoth555 Dec 21 '16 at 17:05
  • The data on local machines are of importance to me but since i can't log in to user accounts because server failure i'm not sure what should i do to recover local data. – ukaric Dec 21 '16 at 17:12
  • Unplug the network cable and retry to login, it will use the cached credential. – yagmoth555 Dec 21 '16 at 17:22

Your only option would be to use one of the methods to "Break" into the local admin accounts on each of the desktops, and then rejoin them to the fresh domain on the rebuilt server. You would still have to rebuilt everything server side. When the users logged in, they would get fresh profiles due to the new domain and user SIDs. The only thing you would save would be their documents on their local computers. Without backups of active directory, you lose 90% of your valuable information.

It would most likely make more sense to just back up the drives and start from scratch. You could put their old profiles up on the server or restore their local PC data after the fact.

  • So the best course of action would be to make backups of all data that is on local machine and after fresh setup just recover them, because user profiles are not that big of a deal the fact that local machines are locked in with valuable data stored on them. – ukaric Dec 21 '16 at 17:09

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