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Is it best practice to have routers/Switches handle DHCP or should Server 2008 handle it?

Posted on 2011-03-21
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Last Modified: 2012-06-27
Hello,

I just need to get a general feeling of what is "Best Practice"  I have just introduced 3 Server 2008 R2 DC's to an environment.  Currently DHCP is handled by the router.  They have around 90 users and I feel DHCP would be better managed on the server.

What is the general concensus on DHCP out there?
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Question by:Clarick1
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wrightsonm earned 500 total points
ID: 35182985
You will almost definitely have more control over dhcp using server 2008 than a standard off the shelf router.  If you have domain controllers then you need dns running on the server so that the DC is regsitered correctly, so you would have to reconfigure the router dhcp to use the dns on the server.  So you may aswell to dhcp with the dns on the same machine.

My vote is to have dhcp on the server
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Expert Comment

by:Amit
ID: 35183249
For small env (2-50 user) router DCHP is good. But for large env, Windows DHCP will be better, as you can create multiple scopes and design according to your requirement.

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Author Comment

by:Clarick1
ID: 35183403
The environment was small but now they have grown.  We just put in a new VMWare environment and the user base is much larger.
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Expert Comment

by:Amit
ID: 35183456
With my exp, Windows DHCP will be the better option for large env. It is easy to manage and troubleshoot. For more details please check below link.

http://www.windowsnetworking.com/articles_tutorials/How-to-Install-Configure-Windows-Server-2008-DHCP-Server.html
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by:Craig Beck
ID: 35199178
I would use the Server, so DHCP and DNS management is easier, and so DHCP clients can register their hostnames successfully in DNS.
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Author Comment

by:Clarick1
ID: 35211252
I basically agree with all of you.  on using the server.  I wanted to see if there was a consensus.  Thanks so much for input!
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Expert Comment

by:itconsultant7717
ID: 35211307
Definitely use the server because DNS and active directory work together, when users log into machines you do not want any information to go to a router first you want that information (username, computer name etc) to go straight to the DNS server that hosts active directory. I've seen log on performance suffer if you don't utilize DNS and DHCP on a server in a domain environment. Just have the server forward DNS info to the router and the router will forward to the ISP. Also in the DHCP server you can setup options, for example router IP, DNS server, time server which you can control from your own DHCP server but you usually can't do this from a router or switch. Again, all this information is better left on the server so it's in the loop as the information is sent to workstations.
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