Chapter 6. Understanding Active Directory Services
CLASSIC NT HAS MANY ECCENTRICITIESЧbig and smallЧthat limit its scalability and functionality. Many of these eccentricities stem from NT's clumsy, flat-file, Registry-based account management system. What is lacking in classic NT is a true directory service capable of handling the management chores for a network containing hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of users, computers, groups, printers, shared folders, network appliances, and so forth.
The hallmark of modern Windows is an enterprise-class directory service called Active Directory. We're going to spend the next six chapters learning to configure, deploy, manage, and fix Active Directory. The purpose of this chapter is to introduce you to the components of Active Directory and how they fit together. We'll also take an initial look at the tools provided by Microsoft to access and modify the contents of Active Directory.