Use PowerShell to Determine the PDC Emulator FSMO Role Holder in your Active Directory Forest Root Domain

Each domain has a PDC emulator FSMO role so how do I determine which domain controller holds the PDC emulator FSMO role in the forest root domain if I have multiple domains in my forest? Sounds like you can’t see the forest root for the trees :-).

The answer of course is with PowerShell:


The Active Directory PowerShell module which is part of the Remote Server Administration Tools (RSAT) is installed on the workstation these commands are being run from. The module is automatically imported since the workstation is running a new enough version of PowerShell to take advantage of the module auto-loading feature that was first introduced in PowerShell version 3.



  1. Patrick IZZO

    In result we got :


    How to do for get ONLY

    • Mike F Robbins

      Expanding the PDCEmulator property will return the result you’re looking for:

      Get-ADForest |
      Select-Object -ExpandProperty RootDomain |
      Get-ADDomain |
      Select-Object -ExpandProperty PDCEmulator
  2. rolf kuper

    (get-addomain).pdcemulator is faster and gives the output of hostname

    • Mike F Robbins

      Faster is a relative term. While your command is less to type, this blog article is specifically about retrieving the name of the domain controller that hosts the PDC emulator FSMO role in the forest root domain. Your version retrieves the PDC emulator in the current domain which is not necessarily the forest root domain unless there is only one domain in the Active Directory environment.


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