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What is a recommended server hardware configuration for new Active Directory Domain Controller

Posted on 2011-04-26
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2012-06-27
Our company currently has an AD DC on Windows 2003 OS.  We are in need of a new server and it's sole purpose will be to replace our current AD DC and DNS.

Not sure if this matters, but we currently have a seperate Exchange server running exchange 2003, a Web server, a SQL Server, a File Server, and a few others all running on Windows 2003.  We also have an old application server running on Windows NT 4.0 who's sole purpose is to run an obsolete accounting and database program which can not currently be replaced.  Our company also uses many programs that use old dBase and FoxPro databases, which I have problems working with from Windows 7 and x64 based desktop computers.

We have 2 offices and about 60 other computers / users.  I need to price out a new server but I'm not sure what I should be looking for.  Nothing too fancy but I also don't want to under purchase.  

My question is, what would be a recommended hardward (processor, RAM) and software OS setup for a new AD DC server?  

Question by:handyjay

Assisted Solution

ks_admin earned 400 total points
ID: 35467899
Here are the base system requirements for Server 2008 R2.   This will certainly run AD and DNS services just fine!


LVL 97

Accepted Solution

Lee W, MVP earned 800 total points
ID: 35467906
DCs don't do much.  They don't need much.  Especially in tiny environments like yours.  I would have 2 DCs at each office or at least at the larger office and then one at the other.  Other than that, specs can be quite minimal.  Probably wouldn't get anything with less than 4 GB of RAM and a CPU one or two notches above minimal, but even minimal would be fine because look at your existing DC - what kind of usage does it get - next to nothing I'm willing to wager.
LVL 56

Assisted Solution

andyalder earned 800 total points
ID: 35468521
It's got a bit of work to do since it should also be a global catalog server, but there again that's not much for 60 users, no big database so just a couple of 10/15K disks for OS plus GC.

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