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Though Microsoft introduced Active Directory (AD) with Windows Server 2000, a number of organizations have still not implemented the technology, choosing instead to continue to use NT domains. AD is a far more efficient tool for managing an enterprise's users and resources and should be adopted by every Microsoft shop. To get the most out of AD however, it must be architected correctly.
This research note investigates the three primary architectural components of an AD implementation and discusses their purpose in the grand scheme of the deployment. These layers are:

  • Forests
  • Domains
  • Organizational Units

The point of implementing AD is to achieve greater efficiency and functionality in terms of user and resource management. Design the architecture the right way to actually achieve that efficiency.

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