Contoso decides to open two branch offices: East and West. Computers are purchased for 10 sales representatives in each office. The asset tags assigned to the computers are shown in the following table.
East Branch West Branch
EB-2841 WB-3748 EB-2842 WB-3749 EB-2843 WB-3750 EB-2844 WB-3751 EB-2845 WB-3752 EB-2846 WB-3753 EB-2847 WB-3754 EB-2848 WB-3755 EB-2849 WB-3756 EB-2850 WB-3757
Your job is to prepare Active Directory for the deployment of these computers.
Chapter 5 User Accounts 5-25 Exercise 1: Create OUs
Create two OUs in the contoso.com domain: EastBranch and WestBranch. Type the names as shown. Do not put a space between the words.
Exercise 2: Script the Creation of Computer Accounts
1. Open Notepad.
2. Type a line for each computer, following this example:
DSADD COMPUTER ?CN=EB-2841,OU=EastBranch,DC=Contoso,DC=COM? -desc ?Sales Rep Computer? -loc ?East Branch Office?
Be sure to modify the CN= parameter to match the asset tag of each computer, and the OU= and -loc parameters to reflect the name and location description of the branch office for each computer.
3. Save the file as “C:\ScriptComputers.bat” and be sure to surround the name with quotation marks, or Notepad will add a .txt extension automatically.
4. Open a command prompt and type c:\scriptcomputers.
5. Confirm the successful generation of the computer accounts by examining the EastBranch and WestBranch OUs. The MMC does not refresh automatically, so press F5 to refresh if you do not see the new computers initially.
Following a weekend during which a consultant performed maintenance on the computers in the East Branch Office, users complain of trouble logging on. You examine the event log on one of the branch office computers and discover the following event:
5-26 Chapter 5 Computer Accounts There seems to be a problem with the computer account.
Which of the following steps must be performed to correct the problem?
1. Delete the computer accounts
2. Reset the user accounts
3. Join the computers to a workgroup
4. Disable the computer accounts
5. Reset the computer accounts
6. Enable the computer accounts
7. Create new computer accounts
8. Join the computers to the domain
The correct answer is 5, 3, and 8. This is the most efficient solution; it involves resetting computer accounts and rejoining machines to the domain.
Exercise 1 (Optional): Simulation of the Problem
If you joined a second computer to the Contoso domain in Lesson 1, move the computer object for that computer into the EastBranch OU. Then, in Active Directory Users And Computers, reset the computer’s account.
When you restart the computer, try logging on to the domain. Are you successful? Can you log on with Contoso domain accounts you have used in the past to log on to the computer? Why? (Hint: cached logons.)
Can you log on with new domain accounts, which have never logged on to the computer? When you attempt to do so, you will receive a typical error message indicating that the computer account may be missing.
Log on as the local Administrator and examine the event log. What error messages appear?
Exercise 2: Reset All East Branch Computer Accounts
The fastest way to reset the computer accounts, particularly because all the accounts are in the same OU, will be a command-line tool.
1. Open a command prompt.
2. Type the following command:
DSQUERY COMPUTER ?OU=EastBranch,DC=contoso,DC=com?
Chapter 5 User Accounts 5-27 This command queries Active Directory for a list of computers in the EastBranch OU. The list should match the computer accounts created in the Case Scenario exercise.
3. Type the following command:
DSQUERY COMPUTER ?OU=EastBranch,DC=contoso,DC=com? | DSMOD COMPUTER -RESET
This time, we pipe the results of the DSQUERY command to the input of DSMOD. The DSMOD COMPUTER -RESET command will reset each of those accounts. Mission accomplished.
Exercise 3 (Optional): Rejoin the Domain
If you have a second system, just reset its computer account. You can now practice removing the machine from the domain by changing its membership to a workgroup. After restarting, join the domain again.
■ You must have permissions to create a computer object in Active Directory. Administrators and Account Operators have sufficient permissions, and permissions can be delegated to other users or groups.
■ When creating a computer object, you can specify what user or group can join the computer to the domain using that account.
■ Active Directory Users And Computers allows you to create, modify, delete, disable, enable, and reset computer objects.
■ From the command prompt, you can create a computer object with DSADD Computer and modify its properties using DSMOD Computer.
■ DSMOD Computer is also used to reset, disable, and enable a computer object. DSRM will remove a computer object. The support tool, NETDOM, includes numerous switches to achieve similar tasks.
■ A common troubleshooting recovery includes re-creating or resetting a computer account, removing the computer from the domain, and rejoining the domain.
Before taking the exam, review the key points and terms that are presented below to help you identify topics you need to review. Return to the lessons for additional practice and review the “Further Readings” sections in Part 2 for pointers to more information about topics covered by the exam objectives.
5-28 Chapter 5 Computer Accounts Key Points
■ Identify the minimum permissions required to create a computer object in Active Directory, and the permissions required to change a machine’s membership between workgroups and domains.
■ Know the syntax of the DSADD, DSMOD, and DSRM commands. Remember that DSMOD and DSADD require one, or more, distinguished names as parameters. The DSQUERY command can be used to provide those names to DSMOD.
■ Be very clear on the differences among disabling, resetting, and deleting a computer account. What is the impact of each on the computer object, its SID and group membership, and on the system itself?
■ Know the four rules for troubleshooting computer account problems. Apply all four, every time, and you will be likely to nail every computer account trouble-shooting question.
■ Be comfortable with finding objects in Active Directory, and managing those objects from the search results. This skill set applies to many objects in Active Directory, and several objectives of the certification exam.
Computer account An account created in Active Directory that uniquely identifies the computer in the domain.
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