Directory server replication is the process of synchronizing data between multiple directory servers within a network or organization. This replication ensures that all directory servers contain consistent and up-to-date information, even though they may be distributed across different locations or used for load balancing and fault tolerance. The primary goals of directory server replication are:

  1. High Availability: Directory services are critical for authentication, authorization, and resource location in many networked environments. Replication helps ensure that if one directory server becomes unavailable, other servers can continue to provide services without disruption.

  2. Load Distribution: Replication allows organizations to distribute the load of directory queries and updates across multiple servers, preventing any single server from becoming a bottleneck due to excessive traffic.

  3. Disaster Recovery: In the event of data loss or server failure, replicated data can be used for recovery purposes, minimizing data loss and downtime.

Here’s how directory server replication typically works:

  1. Data Changes: Whenever a change is made to the directory data on one directory server (e.g., user account creation, modification, or deletion), that change is recorded in a replication log or queue.

  2. Replication Process: The directory server uses a replication mechanism to transmit the changes to one or more destination servers. This process can be either push-based (source server sends updates to destination servers) or pull-based (destination servers request updates from the source server).

  3. Consistency: The destination server(s) apply the changes received from the source server to their own directory database. They ensure that the data remains consistent by following a set of rules and conflict resolution mechanisms if there are conflicting updates.

  4. Topology: Depending on the replication topology, there can be various configurations, such as master-slave (one-way replication), multi-master (two-way replication), or even more complex topologies.

  5. Synchronization: Replication systems use various methods to maintain synchronization and ensure data consistency. These methods may include timestamps, version numbers, or unique identifiers for each entry.

  6. Latency: There may be some latency between data changes on the source server and their replication to the destination server(s). The level of acceptable latency depends on the specific requirements of the organization.

Different directory service solutions offer varying levels of configurability and options for directory server replication to meet specific needs. Properly configured and managed replication is crucial for ensuring the reliability, availability, and consistency of directory data in complex network environments.

For directory controllers in the domain to be consistent, updates are required between controllers. This event is called replication.

  • Controllers in the same site communicate with each other via Change Notification and information is updated every 15 seconds. Since there is a Multi-Master model in the enterprise directory, the directory structure is preserved.

  • Between different sites, replication takes place within each site via Bridgehead Server.

The SambaBox Replication screen displays * Replication status between enterprise directory domain controllers * General Replication Summary * The latest state of replication between domain controllers that are data replication partners * Summary information such as which sections are having problems * KCC Connection Objects * A manuel replication table that users can use to manually replicate directory partitions between SambaBox servers.

Domain controllers

Users can view domain controllers name and online status and trigger KCC of that domain controller.

Replication Domain Controllers


The term “triggering Kerberos consistency check” in the context of SambaBox refers to a process that helps ensure the consistency and integrity of Kerberos authentication data in an SambaBox environment. Kerberos is a widely used authentication protocol that relies on cryptographic tickets to authenticate users and services. In SambaBox, Kerberos consistency checks are essential to maintain security and reliability. Here’s what this process entails:

  1. Verification of Kerberos Database Consistency: SambaBox uses a Kerberos database (also known as the Key Distribution Center or KDC database) to store information related to user accounts, service accounts, and their associated cryptographic keys. This database is critical for the operation of Kerberos authentication.

  2. Replication of Kerberos Data: In an SambaBox forest with multiple domain controllers, it’s crucial that Kerberos data, including user account information and encryption keys, is consistent across all domain controllers. Replication ensures that changes made on one domain controller are propagated to others.

  3. Triggering Consistency Checks: To maintain consistency, SambaBox periodically triggers consistency checks for Kerberos data. This can happen automatically based on a predefined schedule or manually initiated by administrators when necessary.

  4. Consistency Check Process: When a Kerberos consistency check is triggered, the domain controller examines the Kerberos database to identify any inconsistencies or discrepancies. This might include issues such as missing or outdated information, improper key distribution, or incorrect encryption settings.

  5. Resolution of Inconsistencies: If inconsistencies are detected during the consistency check, the domain controller takes corrective action to resolve them. This may involve updating records, reestablishing proper encryption keys, or replicating missing data from another domain controller.

  6. Logging and Reporting: SambaBox typically logs the results of Kerberos consistency checks, including any detected issues and the actions taken to resolve them. This information is valuable for monitoring the health and security of the authentication system.

Overall, triggering Kerberos consistency checks in SambaBox is a proactive measure to ensure that Kerberos authentication, which is widely used for securing access to network resources, remains reliable and secure. It helps prevent authentication issues and security vulnerabilities by identifying and addressing potential problems in the Kerberos database before they can lead to operational or security issues.

Replication Summary

Shows summary of replication status between replication partners.

Replication Summary

Inbound Replication

Inbound replication partners in SambaBox are the domain controllers or servers from which a particular domain controller receives replication changes. Establishing and managing these partnerships is crucial for maintaining consistency and ensuring that directory data remains up-to-date across all domain controllers within a domain.

Replication Inbound


Desired replication partner list can be achieved using sites, sitelinks and NTDS Connections. Please refer to Sites & Subnets page

Outbound Replication

Outbound replication in SambaBox is the process by which changes made on a specific domain controller are sent to and synchronized with other domain controllers within the same domain. This synchronization ensures that all domain controllers maintain consistent and up-to-date directory information.

Replication Outbound


Desired replication partner list can be achieved using sites, sitelinks and NTDS Connections. Please refer to Sites & Subnets page

KCC Connection Objects

KCC connections in SambaBoxy are the communication links between domain controllers that are dynamically managed by the Knowledge Consistency Checker. These connections are essential for replicating directory changes efficiently and maintaining consistency in an SambaBox environment. KCC continuously adapts the replication topology and schedules to ensure optimal performance and reliability.

Replication Outbound


Desired replication partner list can be achieved using sites, sitelinks and NTDS Connections. Please refer to Sites & Subnets page

Manual Replication

Manually replicating domain sections in SambaBox can serve several useful purposes in certain situations. Manual replication allows administrators to take control of the replication process and ensure that specific changes are propagated immediately when needed. Here are some scenarios where manually replicating domain sections is beneficial:

  1. Forcing Urgent Replication: In normal circumstances, SambaBox replication occurs automatically based on replication schedules and triggers. However, there might be situations where you need certain changes to be replicated immediately due to their critical nature. Manually initiating replication can be useful for urgent updates, such as password changes or security policy updates.

  2. Testing and Troubleshooting: When diagnosing replication issues or testing changes, manually replicating domain sections can help ensure that the changes are synchronized across domain controllers promptly. This is particularly useful for verifying that replication problems have been resolved.

  3. Disaster Recovery: In the event of data corruption or the accidental deletion of objects, manual replication can be used to restore the correct data from a known good source, thereby recovering from the issue more quickly.

  4. Site-to-Site Replication: In multi-site SambaBox deployments, there may be scenarios where you want to manually trigger replication between specific sites to ensure that critical changes, such as group membership updates or security changes, are quickly propagated across sites.

  5. Immediate Updates: Some changes may have dependencies or require immediate application, such as Group Policy updates or changes to service accounts. Manual replication ensures that these changes are reflected across the network immediately.

  6. Management of Specific Domains: If your SambaBox forest contains multiple domains, you might want to manually replicate changes for specific domains to ensure that updates are isolated and don’t impact other domains unnecessarily.

While manual replication can be a useful tool, it should be used judiciously, as it can increase replication traffic and potentially overwhelm the network if overused. It’s essential to understand the implications of manual replication and use it only when necessary to meet specific administrative or operational requirements.

Replication Outbound
Enterprise Directory Sections



Domain section

The section where informations about user, group, computer and OU are located.

Configuration Section

The section where the forest-wide topology of the site and services is located.

Schema section

The section where the rules and object definitions in the enterprise directory are located.

Forest DNS Zones Section

The section where DNS records are kept concerning the forest.

Domain DNS Zones Section

The section where DNS records are kept concerning the domain.


KCC (Knowledge Consistency Checker): Domain controllers are responsible for generating optimal traffic in up to three steps of the replication topology. This service runs every 15 minutes and is responsible for updating in no more than three steps.