When you say your DNS settings are good, are you pointing to the AD controller for DNS resolution on the laptop? And have you tried joining the machine to the domain using the fully qualified domain name instead (i.e. domain.local or domain.com)??
A serial entrepreneur is someone who effectively manages startups within their means to manage them, not someone who runs 30 different business ideas at once hoping one works. If I wanted to hire someone to throw things at a wall to see what sticks, I'd hire a two year old.