Introduction to Active Directory Domain Services

  • What’s New in Windows Server 2008 Active Directory Domain Services
  • Windows Server 2008 System Requirements

→ Active Directory has changed significantly in Windows Server 2008. Windows Server 2008 includes a number of new features for the Active Directory Domain Services server role. The minimum and recommended system requirements for Active Directory Domain Services in Windows Server 2008 have also changed.

 This chapter starts with an overview of the Active Directory Domain Services server role in Windows Server 2008. Thereafter, details on the new Active Directory Domain Services features are covered. Lastly, the system requirements for Windows Server 2008 and the steps to install Windows Server 2008 are covered in this chapter.

→ Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS) is Microsoft’s implementation of a directory service that provides centralized authentication and authorization services. AD DS in Windows Server 2008 provides a powerful directory service to centrally store and manage security principals, such as users, groups, and computers, and it offers centralized and secure access to network resources.

AD DS is one of the most important server roles in Windows Server 2008. It provides the basis for authentication and authorization for virtually all other server roles in Windows Server 2008 and is the foundation for Microsoft’s Identity and Access Solutions. Additionally, a number of enterprise products, including Exchange Server and Windows SharePoint Services, require AD DS.

 

What’s New in Windows Server 2008 Active Directory Domain Services

Active Directory Domain Services in Windows Server 2008 provides a number of enhancements over previous versions, including these:

  • Auditing—AD DS auditing has been enhanced significantly in Windows Server 2008. The enhancements provide more granular auditing capabilities through four new auditing categories: Directory Services Access, Directory Services Changes, Directory Services Replication, and Detailed Directory Services Replication. Additionally, auditing now provides the capability to log old and new values of an attribute when a successful change is made to that attribute.
  • Fine-Grained Password Policies—AD DS in Windows Server 2008 now provides the capability to create different password and account lockout policies for different sets of users in a domain. User and group password and account lockout policies are defined and applied via a Password Setting Object (PSO). A PSO has attributes for all the settings that can be defined in the Default Domain Policy, except Kerberos settings. PSOs can be applied to both users and groups.
  • Read-Only Domain Controllers—AD DS in Windows Server 2008 introduces a new type of domain controller called a read-only domain controller (RODC). RODCs contain a read-only copy of the AD DS database. RODCs are covered in more detail in Chapter 6, “Manage Sites and Replication.”
  • Restartable Active Directory Domain Services—AD DS in Windows Server 2008 can now be stopped and restarted through MMC snap-ins and the command line. The restartable AD DS service reduces the time required to perform certain maintenance and restore operations. Additionally, other services running on the server remain available to satisfy client requests while AD DS is stopped.
  • AD DS Database Mounting Tool—AD DS in Windows Server 2008 comes with a AD DS database mounting tool, which provides a means to compare data as it exists in snapshots or backups taken at different times. The AD DS database mounting eliminates the need to restore multiple backups to compare the AD data that they contain and provides the capability to examine any change made to data stored in AD DS.

Windows Server 2008 System Requirements

 

  • Processor : Minimum: 1GHz (for x86 processors) or 1.4GHz (for x64 processors)
    Recommended: 2GHz or faster
    NOTE: An Intel Itanium 2 processor is required for Windows Server 2008 for Itanium-Based Systems.
  • Memory :  

Minimum: 512MB

Recommended: 2GB or more
Maximum (32-bit systems): 4GB (for Windows Server 2008 Standard) or 64GB (for Windows Server 2008 Enterprise or Windows Server 2008 Datacenter)
Maximum (64-bit systems): 32GB (for Windows Server 2008 Standard) or 2 TB (for Windows Server 2008 Enterprise, Windows Server 2008 Datacenter, or Windows Server 2008 for Itanium-Based Systems)
NOTE: Computers with more than 16GB of RAM require more disk space for paging, hibernation, and dump files

  • Disk space :

Minimum: 10GB
Recommended: 40GB or more
NOTE: Computers with more than 16GB of RAM require more disk space for paging, hibernation, and dump files. DVD-ROM drive Super VGA (800 x 600) or higher-resolution monitor Keyboard and Microsoft mouse (or other compatible pointing device)

 

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