2 Active Directories using the same network infrastructure

Posted on 2004-11-30
Last Modified: 2010-03-18
            The “A” department is in a position that requires it to create its own active directory, but we need to run the “A” department AD along side the “B” department active directory that is currently up and running.  From discussions with other IT people, I was told that this could be accomplished but would require some extra hardware.  The “A” Dept wants to keep its current email and data servers separate and use trusts between AD’s to share data when needed.  Currently, most of the data is shared via FTP or data warehouse web connection and for the most part will be keeping these connections into the future.
The “A” DEPT has PC’s in various IP ranges inside the whole network.  We have roughly 600 – 700 nodes that have different IP addresses but need to talk to “A” DEPT AD.
I was told the following…
1)       In order to accomplish 2 AD to be running side by side, the “A” DEPT would need its own DNS Server and WINS Server?  In addition the two separate DNS and WINS servers would need to replicate at a given period of time in the day.  This would keep the “A” DEPT and “B” DEPT servers up to date to access each others servers via names.
2)       To accomplish this with one DHCP server, the “A” DEPT’s PC, Servers and Printers would need to be statically assigned an IP address with the “A” DEPT’s DNS and WINS server IP address.
3)       The “A” DEPT DNS and WINS servers would have access to all the IP ranges.  The “A” department has its own firewall so the ports can be opened or closed as needed.
1)       Is this realistic?
2)       If this is realistic, is there a more efficient solution?
Question by:NDnickb
    1 Comment
    LVL 18

    Accepted Solution

    "Two AD's" could mean two domains.

    But "two AD's" could mean two organization units in the same domain, which is recommendable.

    The configuration depends on the physical and organizational configuration. If the two dep's are separated, but connected thru a high speed line, the network topology can be like this:

    Two separate networks/sites for each dep. In every site: dhcp, dns, wins, AD and global catalog (all these can run on the same machine). Beeing the same domain, only replications between sites must be configured, if the default is'n't good. The most powerfull DC will have the fsmo roles, or these roles can be distributed to more machines.

    If the mail server exists, it's preferable to be on another machine, could be a domain controller, but not one of the other domain controllers (well, if the dc is powerfull enough, can be mail server too, but be carefull to harddisk space).

    Of you choose the two domains solutions, you'll have almost the same hardware requirement:

    Two DC's, with dns, dhcp, wins, fsmo roles on each domain and trusted relashionship between the two domains. There will be two mail server, one for each domain.

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