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Windows 2003 Domain - Step by Step

weguardyou
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Last Modified: 2010-05-19
Hey I am planning on making a Windows 2003 Domain, for my internal LAN.
This server is just for internal use only, but I want it to be capable to sending email to the outside world if necessary.
The idea I have is to name the domain “FAMILY” so that when my mom, dad, wife, brother, friends come over to login they will be logging into any of my systems under the “FAMILY” domain.
What is the best way to do this?
Some extra info so that one of you may help me.
I am using a cable internet provider I have my own firewall (Linux) based, that does the DHCP work for my network, although I plan on just using static IP’s… That’s still up in the air right now.

If you can help, please do… Also I will be installing Exchange 2003.
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Commented:
Pretty expensive setup for a home network. The "best" way is to own a real domain name that is pointed to your Windows 2003 system as the DNS server. That way you have full control, however, that will cause problems for you if you don't have a static IP. The other way is to use a completly bogus domain name that the server can't find on the net during the install. Keep in mind that "FAMILY" is not a valid Windows 2003 domain name, it is a Pre-Windows 2000 Compatible domain. Your full domain might be something like family.smith.com. Most machines can simply connect by the FAMILY friendly name.

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The truth is, internally it does not matter what your domain name is. The problem with your situation, however, is that you are planning to send and receive email over the internet from this domain. Therefore, you must pick a public domain name, register it (I recommend using active-domain.com, this only costs about $10/year), and then setup your public DNS records to point to your IP address. No static IP? No problem, just go to www.dyndns.org and register one of their DNS names to follow your dynamic IP. This is very simple; you only need to register with them and install a client on your server to keep this record updated. It follows that you then need to be using a public DNS registrar that supports you using a DOMAIN name, instead of an IP address, for your MX record (so that mail sent to your domain will be pointed at your Exchange server). This is no problem, as active-domain.com supports this feature. Set all of this up (I know it seems quite daunting, but it's really pretty easy), and then point your Exchange server's External DNS to your ISP's DNS servers, and you're set to go. Have a good time
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