Microsoft Active Directory seems to be one of those products that everyone has, is using, but never quite fully understands. I used to know someone who explained oddities in Active Directory as “ripples”, in reality it wasn’t ripples, it was replication latency and urgent change notification. Microsoft Active Directory is definitely a complex product, its reliance on DNS is also something which only further complicates it for most users I have talked with.
I’ve personally been working with Microsoft Active Directory since pretty much the beta’s of Windows 2000 and we rolled it out in a large enterprise environment almost immediately after the release of Windows 2000. Since then I don’t know if a day has gone by without me thinking, working, reading something about Active Directory.
All that said, this series will be about the components of Active Directory and the basis of an Active Directory Health Check.
Why would one want to complete an Active Directory Health Check? Common reasons I see are:
- Schema update
- Exchange upgrade
- Mergers & Acquisitions
- New employee in a neglected environment
- Ongoing issues with Active Directory that can’t be pinpointed
- IT has never looked to see if their Active Directory is healthy
- Reduce support costs of maintaining the symptoms of Active Directory problems
So lets start with the major components that need to be analyzed in an AD Health Check, then in later posts I’ll dig in to each of these separately.
- Domain controller health
- Directory objects
- Network services health
In the next post I’ll dig into the components that make up the replication portion of the Active Directory Health Check.
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