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Join multiple domains and a workgroup in Windows 8

Posted on 2013-01-07
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Last Modified: 2013-01-09
I am an instructor and need to periodically access two domains as well as my workgroup at home.  Even when I right-click the computer link and go to properties, the option to change to a domain is greyed-out despite that I am the admin.  To make matters worse, I would prefer to keep the same desktop also.  How can I accomplish this?
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Question by:frugalmule
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by:John Hurst
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When you go to Properties, you then have to go to Advanced System Settings (left side) and open that. Then go to the Name Tab and click on the second button (change name). That is where the Domain change is. Is that greyed out? Are you on a domain set by the Domain Admin? That may be why you cannot change it.

To the other point, you can only be on one domain at a time.

Now a local admin cannot join a domain. Only a domain admin can do that.

You may be best to unjoin from domains (need Domain Admin), set your machine to WORKGROUP, and then set up scripts on your desktop to map the folders you need at each location. Make sure persistence is OFF.

I am a consultant and that is how I work. It works flawlessly.  

... Thinkpads_User
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by:wolfcamel
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note: you can unjoin from a domain with your LOCAL admin user/password.

Windows 8 will keep a lot of your settings if you have a linked MS account.

I agree - workgroup mode, and then connect with shortcuts or scripts when you are at the other locations.

I also like to keep the same username and password because often I wont need to enter my details to connect.
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by:frugalmule
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Thank you both!  Are you saying that I can 'connect' individually to network resources without 'joining' the domain?  If so, that is fantastic news.
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by:wolfcamel
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yes you can connect to network resources..

just browse to \\server (from explorer not internet)
you should then be prompted for the domain username and password.

in some instances you may need to enter your username as domain\username but typically once you have entered this you will then see the server shares and you can browse or map to them subject to normal permissions.
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by:wolfcamel
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the main thing that wont happen for you if you aren't a domain member is group policies wont be applied to you - not normally an issue.

Also - the domain administrator at each site may have an issue with non-domain PC connecting as they then aren't under their management. But that is more a political issue than a technical one.
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by:Neil Russell
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"But that is more a political issue than a technical one"

But a very HOT one. It is more of a security issue than a political issue.
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John Hurst earned 200 total points
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Are you saying that I can 'connect' individually to network resources without 'joining' the domain?

Yes. Create script files (containing NET USE Z: \\server\folder statements) that you can run in each location (one script file per location). I do that all the time.

.... Thinkpads_User
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by:frugalmule
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Outstanding!  Thanks for all the help
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by:John Hurst
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@frugalmule - Thanks very much and I was happy to help. ... Thinkpads_User
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by:frugalmule
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I am trying to access a printer on a domain when my computer is on my home workgroup.  I have a \\print_server_name but the only message I get when putting that into the run line is that windows can't access it.
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by:John Hurst
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Try opening the printer dialogue box and then add a network printer. You might find it easier to point the the IP address of the printer as that will be exact.

Per my earlier posts, when I am at a client and map resources, I can (and do) use their printers.

... Thinkpads_User
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by:frugalmule
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I have tried that.  I also pinged the IP and it cannot be found.  It appears that unless I am directly joined to the domain, I can't even see the IP.  Still trying to find a way around this.
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by:frugalmule
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I am the admin of this PC but unfortunately, this is all I get http://screencast.com/t/ziH0ixQv
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by:John Hurst
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Make sure when you are not on the domain that you are on the same subnet as the domain.

... Thinkpads_User
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by:frugalmule
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hmm,

My subnet mask is 255.255.255.0 and theirs is 255.255.254.0.

Are you saying that I need to change mine?
Can I change mine without messing up my ability to access my home network?
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by:John Hurst
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The IP you posted allow 510 connections.  See:

http://www.techexams.net/forums/ccna-ccent/61837-can-anyone-explain-subnet-255-255-254-0-a.html

Can you use this?   Probably.

What you need to see is what IP the printer has. It may be above 4th octet and if so, that is wy you cannot map it.

... Thinkpads_User
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by:wolfcamel
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the problem that you  posted the image for..
are you using windows 8 Pro? as the standard edition is like "home" edition and cant join a domain..

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_8_editions


on the note of your ip address/subnet mask etc..your best/most versatile option is to use DHCP - then you will get will get the correct address/subnet/gateway and DNS at each site.


if you cant connect to \\printservername  (assuming this is a machine that has the printer shared) - then this is most likely due to using the wrong DNS. As above DHCP is your best option.
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