Active Directory  «Prev  Next»
Lesson 2Install Active Directory
ObjectiveRun the Installation Wizard to Install Active Directory

Install Active Directory

It is time to install AD on a Windows 2000 or Windows Server 2003 server. Before you start installing, you need to be sure that your network is prepared to support Active Directory. This centers primarily on the DNS service, since Active Directory lives and dies by DNS name resolution. Before you install AD, be sure that you are prepared with a DNS domain name that matches the name of your forest root domain. If your Windows machines are going to be publicly accessible via the Internet, this means selecting a unique Internet domain name and registering it with an Internet name registrar. If your AD installation is only going to be accessed by your internal network users, you can select any domain name you like, though it is a good idea to select a domain name that is not going to interfere with any of your clients who access the Internet. For example, giving your private Active Directory domain the name of will make for some interesting results the first time you try to perform a web search with the popular search engine. You should consider selecting a unique domain name even if you’re not planning on making your network publicly accessible, since this will make it easier to do so later if you decide so. Alternatively, you can use a top-level domain (TLD) that isn’t one of the Internet standards, using mycompany.local or mycompany.corp instead of

How to run the Installation Wizard

Running the Installation Wizard is a very straightforward process. Note that the DCPROMO command can also be used to demote a server that is already a domain controller.
  1. You access the wizard by selecting Run from the Start menu. The Run dialog box appears. Then type dcpromo.exe, as shown here:

This is the Run dialog box. Type the name of a program, folder, document, or internet resource.

  1. The Active Directory Installation Wizard appears:

This is the Active Directory Installation Wizard
  1. Once inside the wizard, you are given several options about where to install your domain controller. The option box is shown here:
  2. Here, the wizard asks you which of the following four areas of Active Directory you wish to create (you can choose only one per installation):
    1. A new forest, including the root domain (the first domain in the forest) and the first domain controller
    2. A new child domain and its domain controller in an existing tree
    3. A new tree and its domain controller in an existing forest
    4. An additional domain controller in an existing Windows 2000 domain

This module will teach you how to pursue each of these different installation options.
In the next lesson, we will define the requirements and network credentials for installing Active Directory.