Event ID 8203 — Windows to UNIX Password Synchronization -- Configuration Issues

Applies To: Windows Server 2008

Windows to UNIX Password Synchronization -- Configuration Issues indicates the completeness or usability of settings that are configured for Windows to UNIX password synchronization.

When Password Synchronization is properly configured for Windows-to-UNIX synchronization, and a password is changed on a Windows-based computer running Password Synchronization, the Password Synchronization service determines whether the user's password is to be synchronized on UNIX computers. When the Password Synchronization service is operating normally, and encryption keys in both the UNIX and Windows environments match, it encrypts the password and sends it to the Password Synchronization daemon on each computer with which the Windows-based computer is configured to be synchronized. The daemon then decrypts the password and changes the password on the UNIX host.

Event Details

Product: Windows Identity Management for UNIX
ID: 8203
Source: Microsoft-Windows-IDMU-PSync
Version: 6.0
Message: Password propagation failed. Encryption key mismatch or packet error for the user on the specified host. %ruser = %1 %rhost = %2


Correct encryption key mismatch

Password propagation failed. An encryption key mismatch or packet error occurred for the specified user on the specified host. This error typically originates in the UNIX environment. Verify that the user account exists on the UNIX-based computer. Observe the following encryption key matching requirements.

The password can be successfully decrypted only if Password Synchronization and the SSOD or PAM module use the same encryption key to encrypt and decrypt the password. Before installing the SSOD on any UNIX computer, you must first set the default encryption key. You must then specify the same key in the sso.conf file when you install the SSOD on each UNIX host. This will ensure that Password Synchronization and the SSOD on the UNIX hosts will use the same encryption key.

Setting the default encryption key


This setting affects the default encryption key for UNIX hosts when they are added for synchronization, as well as the port used for UNIX-to-Windows synchronization. If you change this setting, you must edit the SYNC_HOSTS entry in the /etc/sso.conf file to specify the same encryption key on UNIX hosts that are configured for UNIX-to-Windows password synchronization with the computer on which you complete this procedure.

To set the default encryption key

  1. Open the Identity Management for UNIX management console by clicking Start, pointing to Administrative Tools, and then clicking Microsoft Identity Management for UNIX.

    You can also open the Identity Management for UNIX management console from within Server Manager, by expanding Roles and then Active Directory Domain Services in the hierarchy pane, and then selecting Microsoft Identity Management for UNIX.

  2. If necessary, connect to the computer you want to manage.

  3. In the hierarchy pane, click Password Synchronization, and then do one of the following.

    • Right-click Password Synchronization, and then click Properties.
    • Click Properties in the Actions pane.
    • On the Action menu, click Properties.
  4. In the Encryption and decryption key area of the General tab, enter a key you want to use, or click Generate key to have Password Synchronization create a new key for you.

    For maximum security, you should use a key that is the maximum 21 characters in length.

  5. To save your changes, click Apply.

Make sure that encryption keys match in sso.conf

To make sure that encryption keys match in sso.conf:

  1. Before editing sso.conf, save a backup copy to a convenient location.

  2. On the computer running Windows Server 2008, open /etc/sso.conf by using a text editor, such as Notepad.

  3. In the sso.conf file, search for the SYNC_HOSTS entry.

  4. Make sure that the encryption keys specified for any Windows-based servers running Password Synchronization are identical to those configured in the Password Synchronization UI, described in the preceding procedure.

    SYNC_HOSTS=( domainController[, portNumber [, encryptionKey]]) ...

    Each entry in the list must be enclosed by parentheses and separated from the next entry by a blank space.

  5. Save your changes and close sso.conf.


Retry Windows to UNIX password synchronization for any failed user password change attempts to verify that Password Synchronization is operating normally. Password Synchronization is operating normally when password synchronization succeeds and is operating under warning conditions if synchronization fails for some passwords but succeeds for others.

If password synchronization succeeds for some passwords but fails for others, Windows to UNIX Password Synchronization Configuration is likely fully operational, but there might be account- or computer-specific configuration problems preventing password changes from being synchronized on UNIX-based hosts.

Windows to UNIX Password Synchronization -- Configuration Issues

Identity Management for UNIX