Number of files in NTDS folder are double

Copper Contributor

I am taking MCSE course online. 

I have noticed the numbers of files in NTDS in my Hyper V lab are double the number of the files in the instructor lab.

I asked him about this and he replied this issue sometimes happen without an explanation.

I believe that there is a reason for any issue if these files consider as issue.


5 Replies

Hi @Samer Rustom 


I've just checked - on a 2012 R2 domain I have 8 objects in the folder, on a 2019 I have 14 in that folder, and in another 2019 domain I have 16 objects. Unless there is an actual problem, then these is fine. It is far more important to make sure your domain is heathy and replicating correctly than it is to worry how many files are in the NTDS folder.

thank you for your reply@HidMov 


Is there any documentation from Microsoft saying why the files are duplicating. 


How to check if my domain is healthy and replicating correctly

Hi @Samer Rustom 


You will go over how to check if your domain is healthy as you go through the MCSE. What specifically are you seeing that makes you believe that there is a problem? 

Thank you for your reply@HidMov 


As you can see in the attached pictures there are files in the data base folder of the DC inside the NTDS folder that this does not exist in the instructor server.


I have done another lab windows server 2012R2 DC then installed Windows server 2016 DC. Once the 2016 join the domain of the 2012 more files start showing in NTDS folder. I am wondering if these files extra files are normal.

Hi @Samer Rustom 


The files look normal to me. I've just checked on a clients production forest which has 2 DC's and both of them have similar files, but there are differences.


There is a lot of stuff going on under the hood with a domain controller, and depending on the set up there will be differences between two seemingly identical DC's because one may have all of the roles and others don't. The best bet is to let the DC do it's thing - it will know what it needs in the NTDS folder and what it doesn't.


Unless you see a problem outright then I really wouldn't pay it too much attention. :smile: