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Archive for April, 2015

Get started with Active Directory

Posted by Premkumar Yogeswaran on April 13, 2015

Active Directory Domain Services Overview

What is Active Directory?

Active Directory Services Overview (wiki)

Microsoft Active Directory: An Introduction (Microsoft Virtual Academy video series)

Wiki: Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS) Portal (Fantastic!)

Wiki: Active Directory Features in Different Versions of Windows Server

AskDS / AskPFEPlat

The AskDS blog remains the most amazing place on the internet to find deep technical answers to all of your AD questions. Here are links to some of their best articles related to learning Active Directory. Each of these posts contain links to key Active Directory information that every admin should know. (scroll to bottom)
And here are two bonus posts that I couldn’t pass up.

First, Do No Harm (DCPROMO checklist, highly recommended)

White Paper Downloads

Active Directory Domain Services Operations Guide

Best Practice Guide for Securing Active Directory Installations

Best Practices for Delegating Active Directory Administration

Windows Server 2008: Planning for Active Directory Forest Recovery

Windows Server 2003 Active Directory Branch Office Guide

Read-Only Domain Controller (RODC) Branch Office Guide

Planning and Deploying Read-Only Domain Controllers

Infrastructure Planning and Design: Active Directory Domain Services

Active Directory Migration Tool (ADMT) Guide: Migrating and Restructuring Active Directory Domains

TechNet Library

How Active Directory Replication Topology Works

How Operations Masters Work

How the Windows Time Service Works

How the Data Store Works

Active Directory Maximum Limits – Scalability

How Domain and Forest Trusts Work

Capacity Planning for Active Directory Domain Services

Understanding FSMOs

Phantoms, tombstones and the infrastructure master

FSMO placement and optimization on Active Directory domain controllers

Windows 2000 Active Directory FSMO roles

Support KBs

Virus scanning recommendations for Enterprise computers that are running currently supported versions of Windows

Service overview and network port requirements for the Windows Server system

Things to consider when you host Active Directory domain controllers in virtual hosting environments


How DNS Works

How DNS Support for Active Directory Works

DNS Technical Reference

DNS in Small Networks Step-by-Step Guide

DNS Best Practices
Scroll half way down the article.

DNS Scavenging

Managing the aging and scavenging of server data

Optimizing your network to keep your DNS squeaky clean

Don’t be afraid of DNS Scavenging. Just be patient.

A Complicated Scenario Regarding DNS and the DC Locator SRVs

How DNS Scavenging and the DHCP Lease Duration Relate


Any administrator worth their salt MUST know PowerShell. Here are some great links to help you get started.

Windows PowerShell: Learn It Now Before It’s an Emergency
This five-part video series by Ed Wilson, the Microsoft Scripting Guy, is a fantastic place to start.

Windows PowerShell: Scripting Crash Course

List of Free PowerShell eBooks

GoateePFE – PowerShell for Active Directory
Yes. I am promoting my own blog as your source for learning how to use PowerShell with Active Directory.


Remote Server Administration Tools for Windows 7 with Service Pack 1 (SP1)
This download gives you the admin tools on Windows 7. Enable them from Control Panel – Programs – Turn Windows features on or off – Remote Server Administration Tools.

MCITP Certification & Exams
Use the exam guides linked here for a great list of topics to measure your knowledge. If you see a term you don’t recognize, then study it.

TechNet Virtual Lab: Windows Server 2008 R2: What’s New in Active Directory
This is a free online lab where you can practice with Windows Server 2008 R2 and Active Directory. It includes a 2008 R2 domain controller, a Server Core member server, and a Windows 7 client.

Windows Command Reference
Wow! This CHM (compressed HTML) help file contains syntax and examples of nearly every Windows command line utility, including Active Directory commands. Every administrator needs a copy of this. Note: After downloading the file be sure to unblock it (Right click the file, Properties, click the Unblock button, OK). Then you will be able to view the contents.


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