The main point of Active Directory is to make managing large amounts of users and computers much easier. If you had 5,000 computers and users in a company, having a local account on every single computer for each user simply wouldn’t be manageable. If someone joined or left the company, got a promotion/demotion and needed different permissions/restrictions it would be infeasible to go to every single computer and make the necessary changes. Active Directory solves this by having a large database of users and computers and allows you to manage them easily within Groups and Organizational Units.
In this article I’ll be covering creation of User Accounts, adding Computers and managing both within Groups.
In a Windows based network, you’ll almost definitely have Windows Server with the DNS service installed. DNS can get complicated very fast if you’re just starting to learn it but you only need to know a few things to get you started. Here I’ll be covering how to do 3 very basic things:
- Verify that DHCP is setup to point computers to your Windows DNS Server
- Basic trouble shooting steps
- Mapping names to IP addresses
In a Windows based network chances are high that you’ll have to deal with file sharing and permissions. Here I’ll be giving and overview of permissions followed by showing you some examples. Lets get to it!
This guide aims to help you setup a learning “lab” environment for Windows Server 2016 and Active Directory Domain Services from scratch presuming only basic knowledge of virtual machines, networking and OS installation.
By the end of this guide you will have:
- Windows Server 2016 installed in a VM
- pfSense installed in a VM to isolate your lab network
- Active Directory Domain Services, DHCP and other required services running
- A Windows 10 VM on the domain