Battling Rotherham United went down 2-0 at Forest, who maintained their faint chances of reaching the play-offs.
Former Sheffield Wednesday flier Michail Antonio had a hand in both goals, creating the first and scoring the second in the three minutes before half-time.
Midfield man Lee Frecklington returned after a a one-match ban in place of Paul Green who dropped to the bench.
Teenage loan centre-half Ferrand Rawson started his third successive match, with skipper Craig Morgan, fit again after a twisted knee. named among the substitutes again.
The Millers began the match six points clear of the drop zone after Wigan’s defeat last night at home to Watford.
Forest, revived under new manager Dougie Freedman, included Antonio in their line-up.
And the first chance fell to the ex-Owl, who was close with a right-footer after Dexter Blackstock headed on.
Rotherham threatened with two long shots, Kari Arnason firing over after Matt Derbyshire’s header set up the chance before Ben Pringle’s effort from outside the box was blocked.
Antonio had a shot blocked after 21 minutes followed by a scrappy spell littered by free kicks.
Eirc Lichaz fired high and wide for Forest and in the 30th minute the Millers’ Richard Smallwood received a yellow card for a bad foul.
The Millers fell behind two minutes before half-time, Blackstock scoring with a left-footer from outside the box into the top left-hand corner after Antonio set up the chance.
And their woes doubled in the 45th minute when Antonio made it 2-0 when Lichaj set up the chance for Antonio to score with a long-range effort.
Rotherham suffered a blow early in the second half when Jack Hunt went off injured, to be replaced by Frazer Richardson.
The Millers came back and Arnason had a 35-yard shot blocked, Lee Freckington twice went close and, in between, Derbyshire’s left-footer went wide.
In the 75th minute Rotherham brought on Jordan Bowery for Derbyshire.
There were further off-target shots by Forest’s Antonio and Rotherham’s Ben Pringle and Conor Sammon.
The Millers battled until the end and in added time Sammon had a shot blocked after being set up by Lafferty then Birk Broadfoot had a shot saved but it was all to no avail as Forest held on for the 2-0 win
Nottingham Forest: Darlow, Lichaj, Mancienne, Wilson, Lansbury, Lascelles, Antonio, Gardner, Blackstock, Burke, Osborn. Subs: Collins, Fox, Vaughan, Paterson, Evtimov, Walker, Barrow.
Rotherham United (4-2-3-1): Collin; Hunt, Rawson, Broadfoot, Lafferty; Smallwood, Arnason; Sammon, Frecklington, Pringle; Derbyshire. Subs: Thompson, Milsom, Green, Richardson, Morgan, Bowery, Hammill.
Referee: M Bull.