Membership in Account Operators, Domain Admins, or Enterprise Admins, or equivalent, is the minimum required to complete this procedure. Review details about using the appropriate accounts and group memberships at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=83477.

Deleting an organizational unit

To delete an organizational unit using the Windows interface
  1. To open Active Directory Users and Computers, click Start, click Control Panel, double-click Administrative Tools, and then double-click Active Directory Users and Computers.

  2. In the console tree, right-click the organizational unit (OU) that you want to delete.

    Where?

    • Active Directory Users and Computers\domain node\organizational unit

  3. Click Delete.

Additional considerations

  • To perform this procedure, you must be a member of the Account Operators group, Domain Admins group, or Enterprise Admins group in Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS), or you must have been delegated the appropriate authority. As a security best practice, consider using Run as to perform this procedure.

  • Another way to open Active Directory Users and Computers is to click Start, click Run, and then type dsa.msc.

  • If the selected OU contains other objects, Active Directory Users and Computers prompts you to either continue or cancel the deletion. If you continue the deletion, all objects in the OU will also be deleted.

  • You can also perform the task in this procedure by using the Active Directory module for Windows PowerShell. To open the Active Directory module, click Start, click Administrative Tools, and then click Active Directory Module for Windows PowerShell. For more information, see Delete an Organizational Unit (http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=138391). For more information about Windows PowerShell, see Windows PowerShell (http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkID=102372).

Additional references

To delete an organizational unit using a command line
  1. To open a command prompt, click Start, click Run, type cmd, and then click OK.

  2. Type the following command, and then press ENTER:

    dsrm <OrganizationalUnitDN> [-subtree]

Parameter Description

<OrganizationalUnitDN>

Specifies the distinguished name of the OU to be deleted.

-subtree

Specifies that all objects that the selected OU contains must be deleted as well.

To view the complete syntax for this command, and for information about entering user account information, at a command prompt, type the following command, and then press ENTER:

dsrm /? 

Additional considerations

  • To perform this procedure, you must be a member of the Account Operators group, Domain Admins group, or Enterprise Admins group in AD DS, or you must have been delegated the appropriate authority. As a security best practice, consider using Run as to perform this procedure.

  • Attempting to delete an OU containing other objects results in an error unless the -subtree option is used. With the -subtree option, dsrm deletes both the selected OU and any objects that it contains.

  • You can also perform the task in this procedure by using the Active Directory module for Windows PowerShell. To open the Active Directory module, click Start, click Administrative Tools, and then click Active Directory Module for Windows PowerShell. For more information, see Delete an Organizational Unit (http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=138391). For more information about Windows PowerShell, see Windows PowerShell (http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkID=102372).

Additional references


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