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Introduction to Client/Server Configuration

 

Configuration Tools

 

Introduction

When you have finished installing Microsoft Windows Server 2008 R2, a window titled Initial Configuration Tasks may come up:

 

Initial Configuration Tasks

The Initial Configuration Tasks window is used to perform the most fundamental or routine operations of Microsoft Windows Server 2008 R2. This window displays when the computer starts. If you don't want to come up like that, click the bottom check box. If it doesn't come up when the computer starts, to restore this window, click Start -> Run, type oobe and press Enter.

After installing the operating system, there are a few things you should (must) do before continuing:

  • You must make sure the computer is connected to the Internet
  • If this is the first computer, you must make it a domain controller (this is not a requirement if the computer will not be a domain controller; if you don't (yet) know what a domain controller is, don't worry about that now)

Creating a User Account

A computer network has to be managed. Some aspects can be done manually and some others electronically. In order to do anythinig, you must have a user account that can perform the necessary tasks. Such an account must have appropriate rights on the network.

To create the primary account to manage the network, on the server:

  1. Click Start -> Administrative Tools -> Active Directory Users and Computers (if a message box comes up, click Continue)
  2. If necessary, in the left frame, expand the name of the domain.
    Click Users
  3. In the left frame, right-click Users -> New -> User
  4. Type the first name of the user and press Tab. If you have a middle initial, type it and press Tab
  5. Type the last name
  6. Click the User Logon Name text box and type a user name. Here is an example:
     

    New Object - User

  7. Click Next
  8. In the next page of the wizard, type the password as Password1
  9. Press Tab and type the same password. Here is an example:
     

    New Object - User

  10. Click Next

    New Object - User

  11. Click Finish

Making a User Account an Administrator

Some of the operations you will perform on the network require that the account have the appropriate rights (also called permissions). An administrator's account is one that can do anything on the network, such as creating users accounts or adding computers to the network.

To make a user account become an administrator, on the server:

  1. Click Start -> Administrative Tools -> Active Directory Users and Computers
  2. In the left frame, expand the domain's node
  3. Click Users
  4. Double-click the user name whose rights you want to manage (or right-click that user name and click Properties)
  5. Click Member Of
  6. Click Add...
  7. In the bottom text box (where the caret is blinking), type admin.
  8. Click Check Names
     
    Select Groups
  9. Make sure Administrators is selected and underlined.
     
    Properties

    Click OK
  10. Click OK

Logging In to the Network

To use the network, a user must log in. This is done by provinding a user name and a password. If this is the first time you are logging in, you may be asked to change your password.

If you are logged but you want to use another account, you can switch to another account. To do this:

  1. Click Start -> Switch User
  2. Press CTRL + ALT + DELETE
  3. Click Other User
  4. Type the user name (such as the one you created earlier) and press Tab
  5. Type the password (such as Password1 if you are continuing from the account created earlier) and press Enter
    1. If this is the first time you are logging in, a message will tell you that you must change the password. Click OK
    2. Type a good password for the account and press Tab
    3. Type the password again and press Enter.
      A message will inform you that your password has been changed
    4. Click OK

Optionally Creating a Computer Account

After creating a domain, you can can add client computers to it. In our examples, we will add workstations that run Microsoft Windows 7 Professional, Ultimate, or Enterprise. There are two actions to adding a client to a Microsoft Windows Server 2003 domain but only one is required.

Before physically or electronically adding a client to a domain, you can first create a computer account for it. To create a computer account, you can also click Start -> Administrative Tools -> Active Directory Users And Computers. This would open the Active Directory Users and Computers window. In the left frame, expand the name of the domain. Right-click the name of the domain -> New -> Computer. This would open the New Object - Computer dialog box. In the Computer Name text box, enter the name of the computer. The operating systems before Windows 2000 don't use very long names. Therefore, when naming a computer, keep this in mind and give a name made of fewer than 15 characters. After naming the computer, click Next twice and click Finish.

Instead of right-clicking the name of the domain, in the Active Directory Users And Computers, you can expand the name of the domain, right-click the Computers node -> New -> Computer. As mentioned already, in the first page of the New Object - Computer wizard, you can type a name for the computer. Here is an example:

New Object - Computer

Then click OK. After creating an account for a computer, you can add it to the domain. Actually, primarily creating an account for a computer is not required.

 

:: Note

You can use an existing computer as a server

 
 
 

:: Note

If you are planning to use a lot of Microsoft products, you should consider getting an MSDN subscription. You can get more information from msdn.microsoft.com. Do a search on MSDN Subscription. 

 

Joining a Domain

 

Preparing a Workstation

There are two primary ways you prepare a computer to join the domain:

  • Do Nothing: In this case, you would let the various wizards take care of everything. You would simply follow the instructions on the screen, click Next, OK, Finish when prompted to do so
  • Take care of things as much as possible: the disadvantage of this technique is that you should know what you are doing. The advantage is that you would know as much as possible, what you did where.

If you use the second option, you would for example assign an IP address to the server instead of the letting the DHCP server take care of that (Do Nothing option). In this case also, you must prepare the workstations to join the network. For example, you must assign an IP address to it. If you are working on a small network, TCP/IP is not the most difficult thing  you will deal with (in fact you don't need to know that much about TCP/IP; you can follow other people's instructions and you will be fine).

To prepare a workstation to join the domain, on the workstation:

  1. Click Start -> Control Panel
  2. Click View Network Status and Tasks (or click Network and Internet, then Network and Sharing Center)
  3. Click Local Area Connection
  4. Click Properties
  5. In the Networking tab of the Local Area Connection Properties, in the checked list box, click Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4)
     
    Local Area Connection Properties
  6. Click Properties
  7. Click Use the Following IP Address
  8. Type the IP address you want the server to use. For example, add 2 (bits) to the last byte of the IP address you gave to the server and press Tab
  9. Type the subnet mask (it should be added automatically when you press Tab from the previous text box)
  10. Type the default gateway address (use the first and the second bytes of the IP address you had provided (such as 192.168) and use 001.001 for the other two bytes)
  11. For the Preferred DNS Server, type the same IP address as the server
     
    Internet Protocol version 4 (TCP/IPv4) Properties
  12. Click OK
  13. Click Close
  14. Click Close

Joining the Domain

To participateto a network, a workstation must be added to it. This is referred to as joining a domain. When joining a domain, if the computer you are adding doesn't have an account already, one would be created for it.

To join a domain using Microsoft Windows 7 Professional, Ultimate, or Enterprise:

  1. On the Taskbar, click Start, right-click My Computer and click Properties...

     

    Joining a Domain

  2. Click Change Settings
  3. In the System Properties dialog box, click the Computer Name tab and click the Change... button.
    If the computer is running Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium, the Domain radio button would be disabled, indicating that the computer cannot join a domain:
     
    Computer Name/Domain Changes
  4. In the Computer Name text box, enter the desired name of the computer. If you had already created an account in the domain for this computer, type that name
  5. In the Member Of section, click the Domain radio button
  6. Click the Domain text box and enter the name of the domain
     
    Computer Name/Domain Changes
  7. After specifying the name of the computer and the domain to join, click OK
  8. You would then be asked to provide a user name and a password for a user who has the permissions to let a computer join a domain.
    Type the name of the domain, followed by \ and followed by the user name of an account that can allow a computer to join a domain and press Tab
  9. Type the account's password
     
    Windows Security
  10. After entering a user and a password, click OK. If you have the right to add computers to the domain, you would receive a Welcome message:
     

    Computer Name/Domain Changes

    Click OK
  11. You will be asked to restart the computer
     

    Computer Name/Domain Changes

    Click OK
     

    Properties

  12. In the System Properties dialog box, click Close
  13. When asked to restart the computer, click Restart Now
  14. After the computer has restarted, press CTRL + ALT + DELETE to Log On
  15. Click Switch User
  16. Click Other User
  17. Type the user of a user who has an account in the network's domain and press Tab
  18. Type the password
  19. Click the green button with the right pointing arrow

Post-Installation

After letting a workstation join a domain, there are a few things you should take care of, such as Network Discovery. This time, you may be asked to provide a user name and password.

 

 
 
   
 

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