Windows is a complete OS with everything baked in, whether for managing local drives or accessing remote hosts. However, as is always the case in networking, not everything goes as smoothly as expected.
In this article, we’re looking at the “domain specified is not available” error, its causes and any potential fixes for the solution.
What causes this problem?
The ‘domain specified is not available’ issue happens when you’re trying to log into a client computer with a cached locked-out account in a Windows Server 2008 R2-based Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS) environment. The behaviour is different when you log in with a smart card versus a username and password.
If your computer is disconnected from the AD DS environment, you’ll run into this error when trying to log in.
How to fix this?
There are two simple fixes you can try to resolve the ‘domain specified is not available’ error.
Validate your credentials
The problem might actually lie in the credential authentication system. Using the certificate manager, you can access your stored credentials in the client certificate. Once you’re there, head over to the Details tab, and check if your username is under the User Principal Name list.
You can also check the client workstation’s event log to see if it’s contacting the specified domain to check the credentials in the first place.
Use Microsoft’s hotfix
Microsoft has a hotfix specific to this condition that you can download and apply to solve the problem. However, since the hotfix might receive additional testing, it’s only recommended that you apply it unless you’re not severely affected by the error.
Also read: Green checkmarks on Windows explained