Recover a domain name from an expired trial Office 365/Azure Active Directory tenant.

I regularly work with multiple Azure Active Directory and Office 365 tenants, recently I wanted to utilise a domain that was attached to a tenant that had expired in December 2015, but did not know how to recover it.

The various portals that you can utilise offer very little guidance.

Azure Active Directory was a little more than useless

AAD Error

but the new Office 365 portal offered hope, with an indication as to which tenant it was attached to.

O365 Clue

So now what are my credentials?

Recover Account

Fortunately there is a link to reset your account details which were emailed to my email address which I added when creating the tenant.

So once I had recovered my credentials then I could access the portal and delete the domain.


If you get the message below, you have objects(users, groups or contacts) in the directory that still have the domain you are trying to delete associated to them.


The domain is now removed and can be utilised in another tenant.




Azure AD Connect: Initialize-ADSyncDomainJoinedComputerSync


Azure Active Directory Connect (AADConnect) is the tool that connects your on-premises Active Directory to Azure Active Directory.

At the end of the setup there is a rather unhelpful message asking you to run


Translated to English this means. (also see Update 20/07/2016)

  1. Open PowerShell and set your execution policy to unrestricted.
    set-executionpolicy unrestricted

  2. Change directory to
    C:\Program Files\Microsoft Azure Active Directory Connect\AdPrep

  3. Then
    import-module .\AdSyncPrep.psm1

  4. Then

  5. Supply values for the following parameters:

    AdConnectorAccount: your AAD connector account.

    AzureADCredentials: your credentials for Azure.

  6. If successful you should see
    Initializing your Active Directory forest to sync Windows 10 domain joined computers to Azure AD.Configuration Complete

  7. As good practice, set  your execution policy back to restricted.
    set-executionpolicy restricted

Update 20/07/2016:

This must be run from a computer that has the Active Directory module for Windows PowerShell and the AD DS Snap-Ins and Command-Line Tools installed.


Failure to have both options installed will result in two errors:

The first error is obvious.


The second is not quite so obvious, a dsacls.exe error is generated as the command line tooling is not installed.

DSAcls Error




Recommended Reading: Start with Why – Simon Sinek.


This is a book that I have read a few times and I have found it invaluable in how I approach issues in life, the office and specifically issues around IT.

This book has made me no longer approach the problem with the question “What are you trying to do?”, but with “Why are you doing this?“.

Understanding the “Why

Attempting to understanding the “Why” has helped me immensely when implementing a solution or service, if it does meet the “Why”, it has made me think perhaps I should not be doing it.

Amazon Link


Top 6 (Independent) Microsoft Active Directory Integration Experts to Follow

Blatant self-promotion, but I wanted to share a blog post from OneLogin that gives their list of top Active Directory experts (including me) and our top tips on “What you should never do when working with Active Directory“.

Top 6 (Independent) Microsoft Active Directory Integration Experts to Follow


Does anyone else have any other “No No’s” they would like to share?

Performance Tuning Guidelines for Windows Server 2012 R2

Unlike previous versions of this vital information, this is not currently available as a word download, but only as web based information.

These can now be downloaded in PDF format from here.

Performance Tuning Guidelines for Windows Server 2012 R2

YouTube displaying a green bar across the top?

Earlier today, I rebooted my PC and after logon I was presented with an Adobe Flash update, which I ran and then forgot about it.  This evening whilst catching up on the various highlights (I use the term loosely) of Saturday TV, I noticed my videos regardless of source all had a green bar across the top.


I am not sure what the new version of flash has done to my computer but to resolve the issue I had to disable hardware acceleration.

Right Click on the Video, select Settings


and untick the box.


Select Close and refresh the video.


The green bar has now gone and the picture is clearer too.

Hope this helps.

Earth to Mark, come in please.


Last night I met up with a former colleague who was having leaving drinks and he noted that I had become somewhat quiet on here and Twitter, so I thought I should put pen to paper so to speak and provide an update of sorts.

The reason for my silence is purely time, along with my day job and family commitments, I am also currently studying for a degree with the Open University (not the kind of OU I am used to dealing with though).  A degree is always something I felt I was capable of, but when I was younger never had the opportunity to do. The degree I am doing is a BSc (Honours) Computing and IT. I am actually amazed how much of the first module (My digital life) I already know and understand but I think transitioning my business knowledge, approach and experience into academic writing and process is where I will find it a challenge, but this is where my tutor Michelle will become invaluable.

I am at the stage of my career where I don’t need to do this degree for anything beyond personal accomplishment, but in the future when asked “What’s my degree in?” I can reply with an honest answer rather than changing the subject or feigning deafness.

As my studies progresses I will update this blog as I document my journey into the unknown.