16.10. Deleting and Resurrecting Entries

This section describes how enabling synchronization affects deleted entries on the sync peers and how resurrected entries are handled.

16.10.1. Deleting Entries

All changes on an Active Directory peers are always synchronized back to the Directory Server. This means that when an Active Directory group or user account is deleted on the Active Directory domain, the deletion is automatically synchronized back to the Directory Server sync peer server.
On Directory Server, on the other hand, when a Directory Server account is deleted, the corresponding entry on Active Directory is only deleted if the Directory Server entry has the ntUserDeleteAccount or ntGroupDeleteGroup attribute set to true.


When a Directory Server entry is synchronized over to Active Directory for the first time, Active Directory automatically assigns it a unique ID. At the next synchronization interval, the unique ID is synchronized back to the Directory Server entry and stored as the ntUniqueId attribute. If the Directory Server entry is deleted on Active Directory before the unique ID is synchronized back to Directory Server, the entry will not be deleted on Directory Server. Directory Server uses the ntUniqueId attribute to identify and synchronize changes made on Active Directory to the corresponding Directory Server entry; without that attribute, Directory Server will not recognize the deletion.
To delete the entry on Active Directory and then synchronize the deletion over to Directory Server, wait the length of the winSyncInterval (by default, five minutes) after the entry is created before deleting it so that the ntUniqueId attribute is synchronized.

16.10.2. Resurrecting Entries

It is possible to add deleted entries back in Directory Server; the deleted entries are called tombstone entries. When a deleted entry which was synchronized between Directory Server and Active Directory is re-added to Directory Server, the resurrected Directory Server entry has all of its original attributes and values. This is called tombstone reanimation. The resurrected entry includes the original ntUniqueId attribute which was used to synchronize the entries, which signals to the Active Directory server that this new entry is a tombstone entry.
Active Directory resurrects the old entry and preserves the original unique ID for the entry.
For Active Directory entries, when the tombstone entry is resurrected on Directory Server, all of the attributes of the original Directory Server are retained and are still included in the resurrected Active Directory entry.