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Dated: Apr. 04, 2012

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Windows Server OS

By Vivek Nayyar

Something about Domain Controller

In Microsoft Windows platform all post-Windows 2000 Server network operating systems are shipped along with built-in Active Directory Services (ADS in Windows Server 2003) or Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS in Windows Server 2008) which differentiates them from client operating systems. Although the services are integrated in the network operating systems, they are not automatically installed during the installation of the OS. Because of this when a network operating system is installed on a computer it works as a client operating system and is technically called a 'Standalone Server'. In production environments if a network setup contains more than 20 computers administrators can promote any one standalone server (computer running Microsoft Windows Server 2003/2008 operating system) as a domain controller by installing ADS or AD DS on Microsoft Windows Server 2003 or Microsoft Windows Server 2008 operating system respectively.

When a network operating system is promoted as a domain controller it allows administrators to manage the entire network, which includes several user accounts and client computers, from a central location, i.e. the domain controller. This enhances the efficiency of the network and helps administrators remarkably expedite the management processes of the entire infrastructure.

Before Promoting Windows Server 2008 R2 As a Domain Controller

Administrators must perform few primary tasks prior to promoting a Windows Server 2008 R2 standalone server as a domain controller. These primary tasks include:

  • The computer which an administrator plan to promote as a domain controller must either have a static IP address assigned manually by the administrator or a dynamic IP address must be assigned to it by a valid DHCP server that can be present anywhere in the network.
  • The computer must also have appropriate DNS server's IP address configured on it. In case no DNS server exists in the network, the administrator must specify loopback address (127.0.0.1) in the preferred DNS server field of the computer. The reason behind this is that if no DNS server exists in the network, Active Directory Domain Services installation process automatically configures the very first domain controller of the network as a DNS server.
  • The computer must be connected to the network.
  • The computer must have sufficient amount of free disk space in the system drive must be formatted using NTFS file system.

Promoting Windows Server 2008 R2 as a Domain Controller

Once all the above mentioned primary configurations have been made, administrators must follow the steps given below in order to promote a Windows Server 2008 R2 computer as a domain controller:

  1. Log on to Windows Server 2008 R2 computer with administrator account.
  2. Click Start > Run to open Run command box.
  3. In the available field type DCPROMO command and press Enter key.
  4. Wait till Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS) binaries are being installed and once done, on Welcome to Active Directory Domain Services Installation Wizard window check Use advanced mode installation checkbox and click Next button.

Active Directory Domain Services Installation Wizard

  1. On Operating System Compatibility window click Next.

Active Directory Domain Services Installation Wizard

  1. Assuming that the computer on which Active Directory Domain Services are being installed is the very first computer in the network to be promoted as a domain controller, click to select Create a new domain in a new forest radio button and click Next.

Choose a Deployment Configuration

  1. On Name the Forest Root Domain window type the name of the new domain in the available field (TESTDOMAIN.COM for this example) and click Next.

Name the Forest Root Domain

  1. On Domain NetBIOS Name window leave the default NetBIOS name suggested by Windows Server 2008 R2 AD DS installation process (TESTDOMAIN for this example) and click Next.

Domain NetBIOS Name

  1. On Set Forest Functional Level window leave everything as default (for now) and click Next.

Set Forest Functional Level

  1. On Set Domain Functional Level window leave everything as default (for now) and click Next.

Domain Functional Level

  1. On Additional Domain Controller Options window make sure that DNS checkbox is checked and click Next.

Additional Domain Controller Options

  1. On the appeared DNS warning box click Yes to continue.

Active Directory Domain Services Installation Wizard

  1. On Location for Database, Log Files, and SYSVOL window leave everything as default (for now) and click Next.

Location for Database, Log Files, and SYSVOL

  1. On Directory Services Restore Mode Administrator Password window type and confirm the desired password. Make sure that the password specified here must not be identical to the one assigned for administrator account. Password defined here is used to restore Active Directory from the backup in case of disaster.

Directory Services Restore Mode Administrator Password

  1. Once done, click Next to continue.
  2. On Summary window review the settings that are to be applied to the domain controller and click Next to start Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS) installation process.

Domain Services Installation Wizard Summary

  1. On the appeared progress box Reboot on completion checkbox can be checked to automatically restart Windows Server 2008 R2 operating system after Active Directory Domain Services installation process completes successfully.

Reboot on Completion

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srinivasa bs's Comment
It is useful.
31 Wed Oct 2012
Admin's Reply:

Thanks Srinivasa






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