DsInheritSecurityIdentityA function (ntdsapi.h)

The DsInheritSecurityIdentity function appends the objectSid and sidHistory attributes of SrcPrincipal to the sidHistory of DstPrincipal and then deletes SrcPrincipal, all in a single transaction. To ensure that this operation is atomic, SrcPrincipal and DstPrincipal must be in the same domain and hDS must be bound to a domain controller that the correct permissions within that domain.


NTDSAPI DWORD DsInheritSecurityIdentityA(
  [in] HANDLE hDS,
  [in] DWORD  Flags,
  [in] LPCSTR SrcPrincipal,
  [in] LPCSTR DstPrincipal


[in] hDS

Contains a directory service handle obtained from either the DSBind or DSBindWithCred function.

[in] Flags

Reserved for future use. Must be zero.

[in] SrcPrincipal

Pointer to a null-terminated string that specifies the name of a security principal (user or group) in the source domain. This name is a domain-relative SAM name.

[in] DstPrincipal

Pointer to a null-terminated string that specifies the name of a security principal (user or group) in the destination domain. This domain-relative SAM name identifies the principal whose sidHistory attribute will be updated with the SID of SrcPrincipal.

Return value

Returns a system or RPC error code including the following.


With an operating system upgrade domain applications, which span both upgraded and non-upgraded domains, may have security principals inside and outside the forest for the same logical entity at the same time.

When all upgraded domains have joined the same forest, DsInheritSecurityIdentity eliminates the duplicate objects while ensuring that the remaining objects have all the security rights and privileges belonging to their respective deleted object.

A DsInheritSecurityIdentity implementation:

  • Verifies that SrcPrincipal and DstPrincipal are in the same domain.
  • Verifies that the domain is writable at the bind to the server.
  • Verifies that auditing is enabled for the domain.
  • Verifies that the caller is a member of the domain administrators for the domain.
  • Verifies that the domain is in the native mode.
  • Verifies that SrcPrincipal exists, that it is a security principal and has read its objectSid and sidHistory properties.
  • Verifies that DstPrincipal exists, that it is a security principal, and has read certain properties required for auditing and verification.
  • Deletes SrcPrincipal in the database only if the entire operation is committed at completion. This operation fails if the caller does not have delete rights or if SrcPrincipal has children.
  • Fails the operation if the objectSid of SrcPrincipal or DstPrincipal is a well-known SID.
  • Adds the objectSid and the sidHistory (if present) of SrcPrincipal to the sidHistory of DstPrincipal.
  • Forces an audit event and fails the operation if the audit fails.
  • Enters events into the Directory Service Log. Do not confuse this with the Security Audit Log.


The ntdsapi.h header defines DsInheritSecurityIdentity as an alias which automatically selects the ANSI or Unicode version of this function based on the definition of the UNICODE preprocessor constant. Mixing usage of the encoding-neutral alias with code that not encoding-neutral can lead to mismatches that result in compilation or runtime errors. For more information, see Conventions for Function Prototypes.


Requirement Value
Minimum supported client Windows Vista
Minimum supported server Windows Server 2008
Target Platform Windows
Header ntdsapi.h
Library Ntdsapi.lib
DLL Ntdsapi.dll

See also



Domain Controller and Replication Management Functions