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Windows 7: Active Directory on a home network... Possible?

28 Apr 2012   #1
Tnuh555

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 
Active Directory on a home network... Possible?

Hello all,

For some time I was wondering about having a domain at home. I tried unsuccessfully before. Then later on I turned my optiplex gx520 that was in my room into a home server. While Windows Home Server 2011 is great for file storage and the like, playing around with the server manager got me going again. I had a laptop that I wasnt using as much do to the disk drive not working too well, so I decided to install Server 2008 R2. Before I go any further, let me start with my network and goal.

Network/ Devices
A Comcast modem feeds our internet connection to a Belkin N600DB router.
The router services various devices, which include:
One Desktop running Windows 7 Ultimate x64
One laptop running Windows 7 Ultimate x64
One laptop connected to a HDTV Running Windows 7 Ultimate x86 (This is a stationary computer; the screen is shot)
Another Laptop running Windows 7 Home Premium x64
One Desktop turned Server running Windows Home Server 2011
One PlayStation 3
Two Apple iPods
And of course the laptop running Server 2008 R2

Goal:To install and configure an Active Directory Domain to service my Windows 7 Ultimate Machines. I know that Windows 7 HP and WHS cant join a domain. Here's where a possible challenge comes in. My father will get angry if he isn't on the internet. Due to this, I need to be able to have certain devices be able to connect to the internet without being on the domain. I will leave it at this for now. Before I go any further, I need to know if this can be done. On an additional note, I have read that using DHCP and DNS on the server is recommended. I can do this provided the client machines will still be able to connect to the internet. If anyone wants any more information, feel free to ask.

Thanks for reading.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.
28 Apr 2012   #2
pparks1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

A machine doesn't have to be on a domain to get to the internet. So, no concerns with those other machines.

I think it unwise to run a domain controller though on a laptop. You really want this on a machine that will be up 24x7. Laptop isn't really a robust solution for this.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Apr 2012   #3
Tnuh555

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Thanks for the reply. I know laptops aren't the best for performing server roles, but it is all I have to use as one. The only other option would be to run a virtual server inside of Windows Home Server... not sure if that would be any better on a machine that only has a Pentium 4 and 2 GB of ram. It uses my wireless at the moment, but if it can be configured and go a week with minimal problems, I will maybe buy an Ethernet cable and wire it. This is more of an educational project... I don't plan on keeping it if it becomes too much of a hassle.

I didn't think the devices would be a problem, but I figured I had better ask to be on the safe side.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

29 Apr 2012   #4
Tnuh555

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

I have decided to go ahead and configure AD DS. I have gotten it up and running, and could successfully log into it with the user accounts I made. There is one issue though. When I went to add computers to the domain, I had to change the DNS server used in the TCP/IP settings to the IP of the server. This is fine for desktops; for laptops, however, the issue is that if I were to take the computer with me out of my home, I would need to change the settings back to "Obtain DNS server automatically". This could be a router configuration issue; my router still has DNS and DHCP enabled. My current question is if I could use the DHCP on Windows Server to fix this, or some other program.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Apr 2012   #5
2xg

Win7 & Win8 64bit
 
 

Hello,

You may use NetsetMan and create LAN or Wireless Profiles with Static IP or DHCP. All it takes to switch to another Profile is one click.

Quote:
My current question is if I could use the DHCP on Windows Server to fix this, or some other program.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Apr 2012   #6
pparks1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

the server shouldn't be taken off the network and toted around.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Apr 2012   #7
Tnuh555

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by pparks1 View Post
the server shouldn't be taken off the network and toted around.
I never planned on taking it off the network. I don't plan on moving it. I have another laptop that I use for work on the go. The computer sits right on top of my home server, and I will have a wired connection when I can get out to the store. I have gotten the DC configured, and that with the program the other poster recommended, I have all I need for the moment. Thus, this is getting marked solved.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Apr 2012   #8
2xg

Win7 & Win8 64bit
 
 

Glad that we could assist.
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Tnuh555 View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by pparks1 View Post
the server shouldn't be taken off the network and toted around.
I never planned on taking it off the network. I don't plan on moving it. I have another laptop that I use for work on the go. The computer sits right on top of my home server, and I will have a wired connection when I can get out to the store. I have gotten the DC configured, and that with the program the other poster recommended, I have all I need for the moment. Thus, this is getting marked solved.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Active Directory on a home network... Possible?




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