Active Directory Essay

1583 Words 7 Pages
Abstract This paper covers how Domain Management has evolved from Window NT 4.0 to Active Directory. Also it provides an in-depth look at all of the advantages Active Directory has over Window NT 4.0. The benefits of using Active Directory are broken up into Categories including the improvements in scalability, organization, and replication. This paper also shows how users are managed in an Active Directory environment as opposed to local users.

Active Directory is a very useful tool created by Microsoft to make the server/client relationship easier to create and maintain throughout Windows based systems. Wikipedia describes Active Directory with the definition:
Active Directory is an implementation of Lightweight Directory
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Also changes to the domain such as adding users and groups or changing attributes of those objects could only be done on the Primary Domain Controller and the replicated to the Backup Domain Controllers. This caused problems because if the Primary Domain Controller is down, there is no way to manage users and groups. The domain could not be extended to add newer object types such as routers and web servers and adding attributes such as cell phones and pagers was also impossible with this older technology. A big part of the organization problem with Windows NT 4.0 is that it has no hierarchy structure to help represent a companies division in departments. Administrative rights were “all-or-nothing” allowing the head of a department to manage just the users under them in the department is impossible which means only the network administrator could manage those users. Microsoft’s solution to this problem was to build on and enhance its existing domain technology, thus Active Directory was born (Hein). Active Directory is a big upgrade to Windows NT 4.0. Instead of storing information in the registry, the active directory database was actually stored in a database saving server resources and allowing up to 10million objects. Changes to users or groups are now able to be made on any domain controller which allows the network to function normally even if the primary domain controller is not responding for any reason.
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