Creating Trial and Development environments for a large Active Directory Domain

Rather than working directly with a production active directory environment, I would like to have an identical setups for trial and development environments.

How would I go about replicating the production AD environment into the dev and trial ones and keep things in sync.

Also how can I be certain that when I try something in the test / dev environments it will perform exactly like performing it in production.

How would I deal with the domain naming convention so apps can work seamlessly in all three environments, but have them co-exist so they would need to use different name-spaces.
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elchermansAsked:
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MaheshArchitectCommented:
If you wanted to replicate same Ad environment in DEV \ Trial, the co-existence is not possible between production and them
Because you cannot bring same name spaces online same time

The best way I can see, just take any working AD server from production, take it offline and join it to isolated network and then seize FSMO roles which will provide you working copy of production domain with all users, groups, GPOs and so forth

Otherwise you can build same domain in isolated network from scratch if wanted to, but doing this you would have to create all users, groups, polices from scratch

No matter how you setup your DEV and testing environment please note that it will provide a base for testing, identifying known issues with applications prior to deploy them in production and to build your confidence.
Again, this will not prevents environment specific issues that may arise as every environment has its own parameters

lastly you can use different AD name space between DEV \ UAT \ production, but in that case you need to change your application configuration every time when ever you wanted to change \ switch AD domain (Production \ DEV \ UAT) for that applications
OR you can simply build multiple instances of applications and bind them with each AD

Mahesh.
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deviprasad_sCommented:
hi,

the dev and trail environments for the real world active directory can be built using the virtualization .

like vmware or hyper-v or any of the choice of virtualization software hypervisors .

it depends on the complexity of active directory real world and scalabilty to select exactly the correct hypervisors .

many of the trivial and trail experiments can be done on the such a trail and duplicate simulating active directory .

but still some diffence will arise which are quite normal , you can have completely same real world and trail simulating AD environments exactly .


thanks ,
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