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Troubleshooting SYSVOL Replication: Non-Authoritative and Authoritative Sync Explained

Title: Understanding Non-Authoritative and Authoritative Synchronization in SYSVOL ReplicationSYSVOL replication is a critical process in the Windows Server environment that ensures the consistent distribution of Group Policy Objects (GPOs) across domain controllers. When inconsistencies arise in this replication process, it can lead to issues with GPO application and other related functionalities.

Understanding the concepts of non-authoritative and authoritative synchronization will allow administrators to effectively troubleshoot and resolve SYSVOL replication issues. This article provides a comprehensive overview of both synchronization methods, their respective tools, and relevant event IDs.

Non-Authoritative Synchronization

Troubleshooting Non-Authoritative Synchronization

Non-authoritative synchronization occurs when a domain controller becomes out of sync with the rest of the replication group. To troubleshoot this issue, the ADSIEDIT.msc tool is commonly used.

This powerful tool allows administrators to edit Active Directory objects and attributes directly. By modifying one particular attribute, the DsReplicaSignature, administrators can trigger non-authoritative synchronization.

In this process, the DFSRDIAG POLLAD command plays a crucial role. It determines the connectivity and availability of the replication partner domain controllers.

When executed, it requests updates from the domain controllers and assists in identifying any obstacles hindering replication. Event ID 4114 is encountered during non-authoritative synchronization.

It signifies that the domain controller has successfully synchronized with its replication partner while remaining in a non-authoritative state. By examining the additional details provided in the event, administrators can gather valuable information for troubleshooting purposes.

Resolving Non-Authoritative Synchronization Issues

Event IDs 4614 and 4604 are indicative of non-authoritative synchronization issues. They highlight various errors and issues that need attention.

To resolve these problems, administrators can follow a series of steps. The initial step involves verifying that the affected domain controller has a fully operational DFSR SYSVOL share.

This can be achieved by reviewing the DFS Management Console. If the SYSVOL is missing or inaccessible, specific actions must be taken to restore it.

Next, the conflicting objects must be resolved within Active Directory. This can be accomplished through the usage of the ADSIEDIT.msc tool to manually delete or modify the problematic objects.

Care must be taken while performing these operations to avoid any unintended consequences.

Authoritative Synchronization

Understanding Authoritative Synchronization

Authoritative synchronization is a process used to restore the consistency and integrity of SYSVOL replication. This method is employed when non-authoritative synchronization fails to resolve replication issues and a complete reset is required.

Similar to non-authoritative synchronization, the ADSIEDIT.msc tool is used to modify specific attributes and trigger authoritative synchronization. However, in this case, the DsReplicaSync attribute is targeted to initiate the process.

The DFSRDIAG POLLAD command is again used to facilitate the connectivity and availability checks between domain controllers. It aids in verifying the readiness of the replication partners and helps detect obstacles that might hinder the synchronization.

Event ID 4114 is encountered during authoritative synchronization as well. However, this time, it signifies the successful completion of the authoritative synchronization process.

Executing Authoritative Synchronization

Event ID 4602 and Event ID 4114 indicate non-authoritative synchronization issues and provide crucial information for troubleshooting purposes. To execute authoritative synchronization, a series of steps must be followed.

The first step is to isolate the affected domain controller from the replication group. This ensures that no issues with other domain controllers impede the synchronization process.

Next, administrators must set the appropriate attribute using the ADSIEDIT.msc tool, triggering authoritative synchronization. It’s essential to exercise caution during this process, as incorrect modifications could lead to unintended consequences.

After configuring the attribute, administrators must reintegrate the synchronized domain controller back into the replication group. By carefully following these steps, the replication process can be restored successfully.


Understanding non-authoritative and authoritative synchronization, along with their respective troubleshooting methods, enables administrators to effectively resolve SYSVOL replication issues. By utilizing the ADSIEDIT.msc tool, DFSRDIAG POLLAD command, and monitoring the relevant event IDs, administrators can troubleshoot and restore the synchronization process, ensuring the consistent distribution of Group Policy Objects across domain controllers.

In conclusion, understanding the concepts of non-authoritative and authoritative synchronization in SYSVOL replication is crucial for Windows Server administrators. The article discussed the troubleshooting steps and tools involved in resolving non-authoritative synchronization issues, such as the ADSIEDIT.msc tool and the DFSRDIAG POLLAD command.

It also explained the process of executing authoritative synchronization, emphasizing the importance of careful attribute modification. By following these methods and monitoring relevant event IDs, administrators can ensure the consistent distribution of Group Policy Objects and maintain a well-functioning Windows Server environment.

This knowledge empowers administrators to effectively resolve SYSVOL replication issues and streamline their troubleshooting processes. Remember, a thorough understanding of synchronization methods is key to maintaining a reliable and efficient network infrastructure.

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