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 08 - How To Install Active Directory On Windows Server 2008 R2 For Your First Domain Controller

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Tutorial Overview
Microsoft Active Directory provides the structure to centralize the network management and store information about network resources across the entire domain. Active Directory uses Domain Controllers to keep this centralized storage available to network users. In order to configure a Windows Server 2008 machine to act as Domain Controller, several considerations and prerequisites should be taken into account, and several steps should be performed.

In Windows Server 2008, unlike previous server operating Systems, there is an additional step that needs to be taken before running DCPROMO to promote the server to Domain Controller and installing Active Directory on it. This step is the installation of Active Directory Domain Services (AD-DS) role on the server. In fact, the AD-DS role is what enables the server to act as a Domain Controller, but you will still need to run DCPROMO the regular way.

DCPromo is the Active Directory Domain Services Installation Wizard, and it is an executable file which resides in the System32 folder in Windows. When you run DcPromo in the Windows "run" box, it will run this executable. This is the easiest way to install Active Directory on Windows servers. Active Directory Domain Services is installed when you run DcPromo, which enables a server to work as a domain controller. To run properly, Active Directory Domain Services requires a DNS server to be installed on the network. If DNS is not available for name resolution, you will be prompted to install a DNS server while running DcPromo.