Step by Step guide to lower Active Directory Functional Level


In Windows Server 2008 R2 and Windows Server 2012, you can lower the Forest and Domain functional level from 2012 to 2008 R2, or from 2008 R2 to 2008. But you cannot lower it beyond 2008. Also, this is not possible by GUI, you have to use PowerShell for doing this. Let’s see how you can do it in the following steps:

 

1. Import the AD module

Import-Module -Name ActiveDirectory

 

2. Check the Forest Functional level of your Active Directory

Get-ADForest | Format-Table Name , ForestMode

clip_image001

 

You can also check it by going to AD Domain and services.

 

3. Lower the Forest Functional Level and then the Domain Functional Level

Set-ADForestMode –Identity “woodgrovebank.com” –ForestMode Windows2008Forest

Set-ADDomainMode –Identity “woodgrovebank.com” –DomainMode Windows2008Domain

clip_image003

 

 

4. To Confirm your Forest Functional level of your Active Directory

Get-ADForest | Format-Table Name , ForestMode

clip_image005 

 

The only thing that you want to keep in mind is your recycle bin functionality which should not be enabled. (Its disabled by default).

Hope this helps. Happy reading!

 

Comments (26)

  1. Marc says:

    Very interesting. Thanks!

  2. Sajeen Shetty says:

    Gr8 Info…..Aman.

    Thanks!!

  3. Robert says:

    Well written and to the point… keep it up

  4. samrat says:

    great…

  5. Anonymous says:

    This does not work.

  6. Mark says:

    It worked for me but I had to remove quotation marks from the domain name. I downgraded the Forest and then the Domain from 2012 R2 to 2012, successfully. Thank you.

  7. Robert says:

    This process worked for me. Follow the steps explicitly.

  8. Ryan11433 says:

    Thanks for this.

  9. Mert says:

    It worked for me. Thank you.

  10. GUS says:

    Is this a support function from Microsoft?

    The following article says:
    "You can change the domain mode to a mode with higher functionality only."

    http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ee617230.aspx

  11. Ken says:

    This worked great for me. Used it to step a server 2012 domain and forest back to server 2008 in order to promote an existing Server 2008 machine to a secondary domain controller. Thanks a ton!

  12. Ryan A Martin says:

    I was easily able to downgrade a Windows 2012 forest and domain to Windows2008R2 in order to promote a slightly older server to DC.

  13. Subhankar says:

    Awesome….

  14. ibulut says:

    Excellent instructions and easy to follow

  15. Sango says:

    This didn’t work for me. However, it is a good tutorial.

  16. Windows 2012 says:

    Thnx dude. Great article.

  17. Warren says:

    YAY heart attack averted and several days of work saved !!! good solid instructions.

  18. Dr Sylvester Benson says:

    GET YOUR PROBLEM SOLVE TODAY WITH MY PROFESSION IN ANY SPIRITUAL SPELL OR ANY KIND OF PHYSICAL BATTLE THAT NEED, MY NAME IS DR SYLVESTER AND THIS IS MY EMAIL FOR CONTACT (stbenson391@gmail.com) OR YOU CAN FOLLOW HIM UP ON FACEBOOK BY MY NAME (SYLVESTER E BENSON)
    ON FACEBOOK OR CALL ME ON MY MOBILE NUMBER +2348136090988, AM ALWAYS AVAILABLE TO RENDER YOU HELP WITH EXPERIENCE OF 32 YEARS IN SPELL CASTING AND HERBAL MEDICURE TO CURE ANY KIND OF DISEASE THAT YOU MAY HAVE, CONTACT ME ON ANY KIND OF ISSUES.

  19. Hugo Rendueles says:

    This worked for me. Succesfully downgrade Windows 2012R2 forest and domain to Windows 2008R2. Thank you very much!

  20. Fabiano Borges de Sousa says:

    Thanks!

  21. Marco Lima says:

    Works very well! Really appreciate buddy!

  22. Anand Sankaran says:

    Thanks Aman! Works like charm!

  23. Inn VNix Ginner says:

    Thank you so much for this contribution

  24. Felix Mintah says:

    This article is awesome. Simple and straight to the point…
    Thanks

  25. Md. Saidur Rahman says:

    I didn’t complete successfully. I have found an error. This following error is:Set-ADForestMode : The functional level of the domai (or forest) cannot be lowered to the requested value At line:1 char:1