What is Active Directory & How Does it Work?

August 8, 2016

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What is Active Directory

Microsoft has come up with a directory service that was made for the Windows domain system. This service is called Active Directory. Active Directory keeps track of the accounts and passwords for all of the users that have one that are in your organization. What Active Directory does is keep all of the information that is needed in a protected location so everything is safe and in an organized manner.

Essentially any computer that has Windows services has an Active Directory. If you are in an organization it is very easy to get the Active Directory functioning. Active Directory was first used with Windows 2000. It has been revised since then a various amount of times since then, improving on its functionality. Directory-based services is all that Active Directory is used for… it’s awesome in the fact that it can hold all of the accounts and passwords that are used in your organization all in one place, organized and easy to locate should the need arise.

Diving by Domains

Active Directory has the ability to be divided into several domains should the need arise. A domain is a boundary for security purposes. All domains that are out there have a host which is done by a computer server… this is called the domain controller. This controls all of the user accounts and passwords that are being utilized in the organization that you’re in and manages them as well. Every organization that has a domain has a domain name that is uniquely the companies own. There are no two domain names that are exactly the same, it is virtually impossible. If your organization is large and you have many areas that come together under the larger portion of it, you can produce subdivisions of the main domain to make things a lot easier to stay organized and to eliminate any confusion that may come about. An example of your domain name can be like this: if your companies name is Maben’s your domain name could be mabens.com; and if you have subdivisions of your company it could be upper.mabens.com, lower.mabens.com, etc.

When you have many different domains you have to have a computer that is known as the host computer for each domain name your company has. There always has to be a host to keep things organized and intact for the company. So if there are 3 domain names for Maben’s then you would need 3 host computers… one for each domain. The accounts and passwords that fall under each domain would be stored and organized in each host computer.

Have questions?

If you have any additional questions on what active directory is, please contact us. We’re here to make technology simple for you!

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