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Active Directory Domain Services: UI changes - Part 1 - Windows Server blog by Kurt Roggen [BE]
maandag 3 september 2007 8:58 Kurt Roggen

Active Directory Domain Services: UI changes - Part 1

To improve the installation and management of Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS), Windows Server 2008 includes some changes in the user interface of the "Active Directory Domain Services Installation Wizard" (dcpromo), but also to the Microsoft Management Console (MMC) snap-in functions that manage AD DS.

Here's an overview:

  • Active Directory Installation Wizard (covered in part 1)
  • Active Directory Users and Computers (covered in part 2)
  • Active Directory Sites & Services
  • Active Directory Domains & Trusts
  • Active Directory Schema

Active Directory Installation Wizard

The updated "Active Directory Domain Services Installation Wizard" streamlines and simplifies AD DS installation.

The improvements to the "Active Directory Domain Services Installation Wizard" (dcpromo) are all available by default.  However, some wizard pages appear only if the check box for "Use advanced mode installation" is selected on the Welcome page of the wizard.  This "advanced mode" is an alternative to running dcpromo /adv.

Advanced mode contains additional options that enable more "advanced" configurations and more control over the operation.  The additional installation options in "advanced mode" include:

  • Creating a new domain tree.
  • Using backup media (IFM - Install From Media) from an existing domain controller in the same domain to reduce network traffic that is associated with initial replication of additional domain controllers.  More in an upcoming post!
  • Selecting the source domain controller for the installation.  This enables you to control which domain controller is used to initially replicate domain data to the new domain controller.
  • Modifying the NetBIOS name that the wizard generates by default.
  • Defining the Password Replication Policy for an RODC (RODC was covered in a previous blog post).

In addition to the changes above, the "Active Directory Domain Services Installation Wizard" also has some new pages:

  • Additional Domain Controller Options (specifies addition AD roles: DNS, GC, RODC)
  • Select a Domain (specifies the name of the domain)
  • Select a Site (specifies in which site the domain controller should be installed)
  • Set Functional Levels (set the domain and forest functional level during the installation of a new domain or forest)
    More information about what (new) functionality the domain/forest functionality levels bring in an upcoming post.
    Keep posted!
  • Delegation of RODC Installation and Administration (specifies the user/group who can install/administer the RODC)
  • Password Replication Policy (specifies which account passwords to allow/deny from being cached on an RODC)
  • DNS delegation creation (Provides default option to create a DNS delegation based on the type of domain controller installation)
  • Export settings to unattend answer file

    On the Summary page of the wizard, you can export the settings that you have selected to an answer file that you can use as a template for subsequent installations (or uninstallations). 

    An example of an exported unattended answer file

    You can also type the options and values directly into the command line rather than using an answer file.
    For example:

    dcpromo /unattend /unattendOption:value /unattendOption:value ...


    • unattendOption is an option in the Unattend install reference table (below).
      Separate each option:value pair with a space.
    • value is the configuration instruction/data for the option

    A little example (creates the first domain controller in a new forest where you expect to install at least some  Windows Server 2003 domain controllers, sets domain/forest functionality levels, db/log/sysvol locations, ADDS RM administrator password, etc...):

    dcpromo /autoConfigDns:yes /dnsOnNetwork:yes /replicaOrNewDomain:domain /newDomain:forest /newDomainDnsName:win2008.lab 
            /DomainNetbiosName:LAB /databasePath:"e:\ntds" /logPath:"e:\ntds\logs" /sysvolpath:"e:\sysvol" /safeModeAdminPassword:FH#+399.cK 
            /forestLevel:2 /domainLevel:2 /rebootOnCompletion:yes

    Many command line parameters (unattendOptions) have been added for the promotion and demotion of domain controllers.  A limited overview:

    dcpromo /syskey - Indicates that the user must provide the system key
    dcpromo /SafeModeAdminPassword - Specifies the administrator password when starting in Safe Mode
    dcpromo /DisableCancelForDnsInstall - Specifies whether to disable the Cancel button during a DNS installation.
    dcpromo /AllowDomainControllerReinstall - Specifies to overwrite the domain controller data of the existing domain controller, if domain controller already exists
    dcpromo /AutoConfigDNS - Specifies whether DNS is configured for a new domain if Dcpromo detects that the DNS dynamic update protocol is not available

    dcpromo /ForceDemotion - Indicates that the removal proceeds if the domain controller is offline
    dcpromo /DemoteFSMO - Indicates that a forced removal should continue even if an operations master role is held by the domain controller.
    dcpromo /IsLastDCInDomain - Indicates whether the computer on which Dcpromo is running is the last domain controller in the domain

    For a complete reference about the Unattended Installation Parameters

    When the unattended promotion/demotion completes, Dcpromo returns one of the following codes to indicate the status of the operation.

    · 1-10 = success return codes (1 - ExitSuccess, 2 - ExitSuccessNeedReboot, 3 -  ExitSuccessWithNonCriticalFailure)
    · 11-100 = failure return codes

  • Automated Reboot after Active Directory Domain Services Installation Wizard completes or via an answer file unattendOption (RestartOnCompletion=yes)

NOTE: When adding the Active Directory Domain Services role (via Server Manager or Initial Configuration Tasks), the Add Roles Wizard only installs the files that are required to install and configure AD DS on a server, but it does not start the actual AD DS installation.  To start the AD DS installation, you must still run dcpromo.exe or initiate the "Active Directory Domain Services Installation Wizard" for the Server Manager in the AD DS server role view.

More information: Step-by-Step Guide for Windows Server 2008 Beta 3 AD DS Installation and Removal

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# Windows Server 2008: Active Directory Domain Services: UI changes - Part 2 » D' Technology Weblog: Technology, Blogging, Tips, Tricks, Computer, Hardware, Software, Tutorials, Internet, Web, Gadgets, Fashion, LifeStyle, Entertainment, News and mo

Pingback from  Windows Server 2008: Active Directory Domain Services: UI changes - Part 2 » D' Technology Weblog: Technology, Blogging, Tips, Tricks, Computer, Hardware, Software, Tutorials, Internet, Web, Gadgets, Fashion, LifeStyle, Entertainment, News and more by Deepak Gupta.

# Transitioning your Active Directory to Windows Server 2008

zondag 2 maart 2008 12:14 by The things that are better left unspoken

You might be running Windows Server 2003 and Windows Server 2003 R2 Domain Controllers at the moment

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Active Directory Domain Services: UI changes - Part 1 - Windows Server blog by Kurt Roggen [BE]