Ensure 'Domain member: Maximum machine account password age' is set to '30 or fewer days, but not 0'


This policy setting determines the maximum allowable age for a computer account password. By default, domain members automatically change their domain passwords every 30 days.

The recommended state for this setting is: 30 or fewer days, but not 0.

Note: A value of 0 does not conform to the benchmark as it disables maximum password age.

Note #2: Some problems can occur as a result of machine account password expiration, particularly if a machine is reverted to a previous point-in-time state, as is common with virtual machines. Depending on how far back the reversion is, the older machine account password stored on the machine may no longer be recognized by the domain controllers, and therefore the computer loses its domain trust. This can also disrupt non-persistent VDI implementations, and devices with write filters that disallow permanent changes to the OS volume. Some organizations may choose to exempt themselves from this recommendation and disable machine account password expiration for these situations.


In Active Directory-based domains, each computer has an account and password just like every user. By default, the domain members automatically change their domain password every 30 days. If you increase this interval significantly, or set it to 0 so that the computers no longer change their passwords, an attacker will have more time to undertake a brute force attack to guess the passwords of computer accounts.


None - this is the default behavior.


To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to 30 or fewer days, but not 0:

Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\Security Options\Domain member: Maximum machine account password age

Default Value:

30 days.

Additional Information:

Microsoft Windows Server 2019 Security Technical Implementation Guide:
Version 2, Release 1, Benchmark Date: November 13, 2020

Vul ID: V-205911
Rule ID: SV-205911r569188_rule
STIG ID: WN19-SO-000100
Severity: CAT II

See Also