The Ultimate Windows Server 2003 System Administrator's Guide / Edition 2

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Overview

"This book will be a supportive resource to help you know how to use the tools and features Microsoft shipped, but even better, Williams and Walla guide you through enough of the product internals to approach administration more strategically."
—From the Foreword by Brian Valentine, Senior Vice President, Windows Division, Microsoft Corporation

Windows Server 2003, the successor to Windows 2000 and Windows NT, is designed to accommodate the seamless exchange of information through Web services. It delivers the increased flexibility and power needed to administer networks as global entities, but its enhanced management tools and security features present as many challenges as opportunities. The Ultimate Windows Server 2003 System Administrator's Guide will help readers negotiate these challenges and exploit the opportunities.

Robert Williams and Mark Walla take readers from an understanding of basic concepts to the application of advanced functions. This comprehensive book begins with the fundamentals of Windows 2000 system administration and applies them to Windows Server 2003. The book then details the planning, deployment, administration, and management of a Windows Server system, and follows up with complete coverage of advanced tools and theory. This book concludes with a quick reference to the most important Windows .NET commands and utilities.

Key topics include:

  • Windows Server 2003 features, structure, planning, and installation
  • Migration from Windows NT and Windows 2000
  • Microsoft Management Console
  • Active Directory management and use
  • User management
  • Group Policy
  • Security, including IP security
  • Printer and file services and networking basics
  • Virtual private networks
  • Disk and backup management and disaster recovery
  • Terminal and Internet Information Services
  • Cluster and indexing services, and message queuing
  • System Management Server
  • Windows 2000 administration support

In this book, system administrators and other IT professionals will find the essential information needed to succeed in the administration of the Windows .NET and Windows 2000 Server families.

0201791064B04072003

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
As more organizations convert to Microsoft's newest server software, expect continued demand for current guides (see also Computer Media, LJ 7/03). For frustrated administrators unafraid of registry edits, Undocumented provides useful yet hard-to-find, step-by-step "fixes, tips, tricks, and tools" to improve performance and ease of use in both Windows Server 2000 and 2003. Each tip indicates a projected risk level for use in a production environment, as well as Microsoft's take, a list of what is needed, and notes with cautions and additional info. Accessible and useful; recommended for larger libraries to supplement more basic how-to guides. For experienced Windows administrators, Inside provides step-by-step instructions for installing Server 2003 and working with new features. Useful troubleshooting sections in most chapters and a section on recovering from system failures help identify procedures for when things don't go as planned. A friendly tone and straightforward instructions make this a winner for all libraries. For intermediate to experienced administrators, Ultimate focuses on Server 2003 but also includes information for 2000 administrators, discussion of the differences between the two, and comparisons of different 2003 editions. More than a how-to, it goes under the hood to describe architecture, helping administrators understand how components interact. Readers will also find a detailed guide to planning and installing Server 2003, followed by a discussion of the spectrum of administrative activities. A thorough appendix lists commands and utilities; there is coverage of IIS that Inside lacks. A good comprehensive guide for all libraries. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

Meet the Author

G. Robert Williams, Ph.D., is the CEO of Manakoa Services Corporation. He is the coauthor of The Ultimate Windows 2000 System Administrator's Guide (Addison-Wesley, 2000) and Windows NT and UNIX (Addison-Wesley, 1998), in addition to being a regular contributor to Computer World, ITWorld.com, Windows Advantage, and Windows NT/2000 Magazine. Bob has been named a Microsoft Most Valuable Player (MVP) in the field of security.

Mark Walla, MCSE, is the Senior Vice President of Manakoa Services Corporation. He has written numerous technical articles for Computer World, Windows Advantage, and Windows NT/2000 Magazine. He is also coauthor of The Ultimate Windows 2000 System Administrator's Guide (Addison-Wesley, 2000). Mark has been named a Microsoft Most Valuable Player (MVP) in the field of security.

0201791064AB02012005

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Read an Excerpt

Windows Server 2003 is more an update of Windows 2000 than a new operating system. This latest version of the base Windows NT technology now expands to support Microsoft's .NET Framework and new security initiatives. This book reflects these changes by expanding our previous book, The Ultimate Windows 2000 System Administrator's Guide. Mindful that Windows 2000 will continue to be deployed, this book not only reflects the new features of Windows Server 2003 but also provides continued support for Windows 2000 administrators.

Windows 2000 and Windows Server 2003 are complex, feature-rich operating systems whose deployment in an enterprise requires highly skilled individuals to support its installation, maintenance, and optimization. These individuals are aided by the abundance of tools and wizards for effective operating-system management that Microsoft has provided. Indeed, many of the enhanced tools should shift the traditional role of administrator to that of proactive manager of computing environments. Thus, the depth of function, flexibility, and granularity of Windows 2000 and Windows Server 2003 ultimately represents both opportunity and challenge for system administration.

This book is written to help you succeed in the administration of the Windows Server 2003 and Windows 2000 Server family. Much of the information it provides is also applicable to the desktop Professional versions of the software. Although the use and management of client software is incorporated, the server side is clearly our primary focus. In this preface we provide a framework for the primary topics covered, define the target audience, and describe how to use this book.THE ROLE OF THEADMINISTRATOR

Windows Server 2003 will not eliminate the system administrator. To the contrary, features such as the Active Directory and the Microsoft Management Console (MMC) will vastly broaden this role. Rather than spend time on mundane tasks and the management of dozens of disjointed tools, the consolidated approach provided by Windows Server 2003 will free the administrator to concentrate on more mission-critical activities.

The functions of the Windows Server 2003 system administrator are generally those that support the user population and those that support the system. The following list summarizes the most common responsibilities:

USER-ORIENTED TASKS


  • Addition and removal of users
  • Group management
  • User application support
  • End-user customer service, education, and communication
  • Management of basic services such as mail and printing

SYSTEM-ORIENTED TASKS

  • Booting, shutdown, and everything in between
  • Backups and restoration
  • Hardware maintenance, additions, and removal
  • System accounting and monitoring
  • System administration logs
  • System security and password aging
  • Network support
  • General troubleshooting

Obviously, this list only scratches the surface of system administration and IT management. However, as a means of setting the reader's expectations, it does underscore the types of activities for which this book can be a guide.BASIS OF OUR RESEARCH

In preparing this book, we used three primary sources of information. First, we relied heavily on our combined professional experience in application development, system administration, and IT management. Unlike many books written on theory by technical writers, our recommendations did not emerge from a vacuum but are based on reality and experiences. We hope the knowledge and experience we bring to this book will assist our fellow IT professionals to manage an enterprise as effectively as possible.

Second, we used observations from system administrators in the field to provide "reality checks" to our conclusions. Theoretical understanding of Windows Server 2003 is a nice beginning, but it is no substitute for the actual experience of system administrators. Because Windows Server 2003 is a new product, one of our primary sources was Microsoft's Beta Program and the participants' experiences with final beta and final release versions of the operating system.

Finally, we performed numerous tests and simulated real-world environments in an extensive laboratory environment. The tests centered primarily on the Standard Edition and Enterprise Edition server versions; however, Windows Server 2003, Web Edition, and Windows XP Professional were also tested, and we refer to them periodically as client software within the broader enterprise framework. Windows Server 2003, Datacenter Edition, was not available for testing at the time this book was written, so references to it are based on published Microsoft specifications. Where differences exist in the version levels, we call attention to them.AUDIENCE

The Ultimate Windows Server 2003 System Administrator's Guide was written for system administrators and other IT professionals who manage a Windows environment. Administrators coming from other operating-system environments, such as UNIX, will find numerous familiar technologies as well as many significant conceptual differences. Seasoned Windows 2000 and NT administrators will find many familiar aspects, but many significant differences as well, that will require a general updating of their technical skills. The addition of the Active Directory, a new domain model, advanced authentication technologies, and the enhanced MMC are just a few examples of entirely new or expanded operating-system features.

Our aim was to produce an intermediate reference guide for administrators, leaving out specialized architectural and programming topics. Thus, this book should be used to gain an understanding of key concepts and for common "how-to" walk-through support. Experienced professionals should find the discussions of operating-system migration and the use of the new enhanced tools valuable. Those with moderate system administration experience can also benefit, but we assume these readers already have hands-on operating-system experience. Novices will need to learn network and operating-system fundamentals.

Attempting to provide useful information to an audience of system administrators was a challenge. Inevitably, some of this book's material may appear either overly basic or too advanced, and depending on a reader's level of experience, some discussions will be more helpful than others. To accommodate this wide variance in knowledge, we cover each major topic first from a conceptual basis and then expand this foundation with discussions on applying specific, advanced Windows Server 2003 functions.

System administrators coming from UNIX might find our sister publication, Windows NT and UNIX: Administration, Coexistence, Integration, and Migration (Addison-Wesley, 1998), very helpful. For Windows 2000 administrators, look at The Ultimate Windows 2000 System Administrator's Guide (Addison-Wesley, 2000).ORGANIZATION

The book is organized into three sections and an appendix:

  • The first four chapters focus on Windows Server 2003 concepts, deployment, and installation. They cover the role of the system administrator, Windows Server 2003 features, operating-system structure, and deployment and installation. Chapter 4 discusses getting started with tools such as the Microsoft Management Console.
  • The heart of the book, Chapters 5 through 14, is a discussion of fundamental administration topics. In a series of very technical chapters, we cover the Active Directory, user management, group policies, security, printer and file services, networking, and other topics essential to Windows Server 2003 system administration.
  • The last section of the book covers advanced tools and concepts (Chapters 15 through 17). It examines the Internet Information Service (IIS) and optional components—Terminal Services, System Management Server (SMS), Indexing Services, Message Queuing Services (MQS), Cluster Services—and other topics applicable to enterprise-level system administration.
  • The appendix, "Windows Server 2003 Commands and Utilities," is a quick reference for the most significant commands in the operating system and in the Windows Resource Kit.

A glossary of common terms is also provided.OTHER REFERENCES

There is a wealth of information that should be used by system administrators to supplement this book. The Windows Server 2003 operating system provides extensive online help, which is available from the Start→Help facility. Microsoft also regularly posts white papers on its Web site, which should be checked regularly for updated information. An administrator should also check the Microsoft TechNet postings for updates.

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Table of Contents

Preface.

Acknowledgments.

1. Administrative Overview.

Windows .NET—A Historical Perspective.

Understanding the .NET.

Windows .NET Administrative Roles.

Scope of Responsibility.

Windows .NET Features and Administration Implications.

Postscript.

2. Windows.NET Structure and Architecture.

Structural Modes, Subsystems, and Managers.

Windows .NET Processes.

Stored and Virtual Memory.

The Boot Process.

Viewing Application Dependencies.

Application Compatibility.

IntelliMirror and Other Innovations.

Postscript.

3. Planning and Installation.

Logical and Physical Structures.

Planning for Windows 2000 and NT Upgrades.

Installation.

Device Driver Management.

Hardware Autoplay.

Windows Product Activation.

Automatic Product Update.

File Transfer Wizard.

System Restoration.

Uninstall Windows XP Operating System.

Postscript.

4. Getting Started: The OS Interface.

Interface Basics.

Help and Support.

Search.

Internet Connectivity and Internet Explorer 6.0.

Winkey Quick Keys.

Internationalization and Localization.

ClearType Mobile Computer/Liquid Crystal Display Enhancements.

Postscript.

5. The Active Directory.

Directory Services.

Active Directory Structural Components.

Open Standards Support and Naming Conventions.

Migration and Backward Compatibility.

Administrative Interface Snap-Ins.

API Options.

Administrative Security and Trust Relationships.

Administrative Delegation.

Postscript.

6. Active Directory Management and Use.

Planning for the Active Directory.

Installing the Active Directory.

Active Directory MMC Snap-In Tools.

Creating Organizational Units.

Locating Objects.

Active Directory Administrative Delegation.

Global Catalog Refinement.

The Active Directory Connector.

Postscript.

7. User Accounts and Groups.

User Accounts.

Groups.

Postscript.

8. Group Policies.

Understanding Group Policies.

PO Implementation.

PDC Operations Manager.

esultant Set of Policy.

Group Policy WMI Filtering.

IntelliMirror.

Postscript.

9. Permissions, Security, Folder Sharing, and DFS.

Permissions Security, Folder Sharing, and DFS.

Reviewing NTFS Permissions.

Folder Sharing.

Distributed File System Sharing.

Postscript.

10. Kerberos and the Public Key Infrastructure.

Kerberos Authentication.

The Public Key Infrastructure.

Postscript.

11. Additional Security Issues and Solutions.

Security Policy.

Security Authorization Manager.

Windows .NET System Lockdown.

Secure Network Services and Architecture.

The End User's Responsibility.

Postscript.

12. Networking Basics and Naming Services.

Networking Basics.

Naming Services and IP Assignments.

Real Time Communications.

TAPI Streaming Support.

DNS Configuration Through Group Polcy.

Support for Broadband PPPoE Connections.

Postscript.

13. Virtual Private Networks and IP Security.

Virtual Private Networks.

IP Security.

Postscript.

14. Disk Management, Backup and Restoration, and Disaster Recovery.

Disk Management.

Backup and Restoration.

Disaster Management.

Postscript.

15. Terminal Services.

Conceptual Review.

Installing Terminal Services.

Configuring Terminal Services.

Terminal Services Administration.

Terminal Services from a User's Perspective.

Postscript.

16. Internet Information Services.

Overview.

Understanding the IIS Web Server.

Working with the SMTP Server.

Understanding the NNTP Server.

Understanding the FTP Server.

Postscript.

17. Cluster, Indexing, Message Queuing, SMS, MOM, and WSH.

Understanding Cluster Services.

Index Services.

Message Queuing Services.

System Management Server.

Microsoft Operations Manager.

Windows Scripting Host.

Postscript.

Appendix: Windows.NET Commands and Utilities.

Command Line Tools New Under Windows .NET.

Backup Commands.

Batch Commands.

Comparison Commands.

Display Commands.

File Management Commands.

File Manipulation Commands.

Miscellaneous Commands.

Networking Commands.

Print Commands.

Search Commands.

System Management Commands.

Resource Kit Support Tools.

Postscript.

Glossary.

Index. 0201791064T03252002

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Preface

Windows Server 2003 is more an update of Windows 2000 than a new operating system. This latest version of the base Windows NT technology now expands to support Microsoft's .NET Framework and new security initiatives. This book reflects these changes by expanding our previous book, The Ultimate Windows 2000 System Administrator's Guide. Mindful that Windows 2000 will continue to be deployed, this book not only reflects the new features of Windows Server 2003 but also provides continued support for Windows 2000 administrators.

Windows 2000 and Windows Server 2003 are complex, feature-rich operating systems whose deployment in an enterprise requires highly skilled individuals to support its installation, maintenance, and optimization. These individuals are aided by the abundance of tools and wizards for effective operating-system management that Microsoft has provided. Indeed, many of the enhanced tools should shift the traditional role of administrator to that of proactive manager of computing environments. Thus, the depth of function, flexibility, and granularity of Windows 2000 and Windows Server 2003 ultimately represents both opportunity and challenge for system administration.

This book is written to help you succeed in the administration of the Windows Server 2003 and Windows 2000 Server family. Much of the information it provides is also applicable to the desktop Professional versions of the software. Although the use and management of client software is incorporated, the server side is clearly our primary focus. In this preface we provide a framework for the primary topics covered, define the target audience, and describe how to use this book.

THE ROLE OF THE ADMINISTRATOR

Windows Server 2003 will not eliminate the system administrator. To the contrary, features such as the Active Directory and the Microsoft Management Console (MMC) will vastly broaden this role. Rather than spend time on mundane tasks and the management of dozens of disjointed tools, the consolidated approach provided by Windows Server 2003 will free the administrator to concentrate on more mission-critical activities.

The functions of the Windows Server 2003 system administrator are generally those that support the user population and those that support the system. The following list summarizes the most common responsibilities:

USER-ORIENTED TASKS

  • Addition and removal of users
  • Group management
  • User application support
  • End-user customer service, education, and communication
  • Management of basic services such as mail and printing

SYSTEM-ORIENTED TASKS

  • Booting, shutdown, and everything in between
  • Backups and restoration
  • Hardware maintenance, additions, and removal
  • System accounting and monitoring
  • System administration logs
  • System security and password aging
  • Network support
  • General troubleshooting

Obviously, this list only scratches the surface of system administration and IT management. However, as a means of setting the reader's expectations, it does underscore the types of activities for which this book can be a guide.

BASIS OF OUR RESEARCH

In preparing this book, we used three primary sources of information. First, we relied heavily on our combined professional experience in application development, system administration, and IT management. Unlike many books written on theory by technical writers, our recommendations did not emerge from a vacuum but are based on reality and experiences. We hope the knowledge and experience we bring to this book will assist our fellow IT professionals to manage an enterprise as effectively as possible.

Second, we used observations from system administrators in the field to provide "reality checks" to our conclusions. Theoretical understanding of Windows Server 2003 is a nice beginning, but it is no substitute for the actual experience of system administrators. Because Windows Server 2003 is a new product, one of our primary sources was Microsoft's Beta Program and the participants' experiences with final beta and final release versions of the operating system.

Finally, we performed numerous tests and simulated real-world environments in an extensive laboratory environment. The tests centered primarily on the Standard Edition and Enterprise Edition server versions; however, Windows Server 2003, Web Edition, and Windows XP Professional were also tested, and we refer to them periodically as client software within the broader enterprise framework. Windows Server 2003, Datacenter Edition, was not available for testing at the time this book was written, so references to it are based on published Microsoft specifications. Where differences exist in the version levels, we call attention to them.

AUDIENCE

The Ultimate Windows Server 2003 System Administrator's Guide was written for system administrators and other IT professionals who manage a Windows environment. Administrators coming from other operating-system environments, such as UNIX, will find numerous familiar technologies as well as many significant conceptual differences. Seasoned Windows 2000 and NT administrators will find many familiar aspects, but many significant differences as well, that will require a general updating of their technical skills. The addition of the Active Directory, a new domain model, advanced authentication technologies, and the enhanced MMC are just a few examples of entirely new or expanded operating-system features.

Our aim was to produce an intermediate reference guide for administrators, leaving out specialized architectural and programming topics. Thus, this book should be used to gain an understanding of key concepts and for common "how-to" walk-through support. Experienced professionals should find the discussions of operating-system migration and the use of the new enhanced tools valuable. Those with moderate system administration experience can also benefit, but we assume these readers already have hands-on operating-system experience. Novices will need to learn network and operating-system fundamentals.

Attempting to provide useful information to an audience of system administrators was a challenge. Inevitably, some of this book's material may appear either overly basic or too advanced, and depending on a reader's level of experience, some discussions will be more helpful than others. To accommodate this wide variance in knowledge, we cover each major topic first from a conceptual basis and then expand this foundation with discussions on applying specific, advanced Windows Server 2003 functions.

System administrators coming from UNIX might find our sister publication, Windows NT and UNIX: Administration, Coexistence, Integration, and Migration (Addison-Wesley, 1998), very helpful. For Windows 2000 administrators, look at The Ultimate Windows 2000 System Administrator's Guide (Addison-Wesley, 2000).

ORGANIZATION

The book is organized into three sections and an appendix:

  • The first four chapters focus on Windows Server 2003 concepts, deployment, and installation. They cover the role of the system administrator, Windows Server 2003 features, operating-system structure, and deployment and installation. Chapter 4 discusses getting started with tools such as the Microsoft Management Console.
  • The heart of the book, Chapters 5 through 14, is a discussion of fundamental administration topics. In a series of very technical chapters, we cover the Active Directory, user management, group policies, security, printer and file services, networking, and other topics essential to Windows Server 2003 system administration.
  • The last section of the book covers advanced tools and concepts (Chapters 15 through 17). It examines the Internet Information Service (IIS) and optional components—Terminal Services, System Management Server (SMS), Indexing Services, Message Queuing Services (MQS), Cluster Services—and other topics applicable to enterprise-level system administration.
  • The appendix, "Windows Server 2003 Commands and Utilities," is a quick reference for the most significant commands in the operating system and in the Windows Resource Kit.

A glossary of common terms is also provided.

OTHER REFERENCES

There is a wealth of information that should be used by system administrators to supplement this book. The Windows Server 2003 operating system provides extensive online help, which is available from the Start→Help facility. Microsoft also regularly posts white papers on its Web site, which should be checked regularly for updated information. An administrator should also check the Microsoft TechNet postings for updates.

0201791064P04072003

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Introduction

Windows .NET is more an update of Windows 2000 than it is a new operating system. This latest version of the base Windows NT technology now expands to support Microsoft's .NET infrastructure and new security initiatives. This book reflects these changes by expanding the authors' previous The Ultimate Windows 2000 System Administrator's Guide. Mindful that Windows 2000 will continue to be deployed, this book not only reflects the new features of Windows .NET but also provides continued support for Windows 2000 administration.

Windows 2000 and Windows .NET are complex, feature-rich operating systems whose deployment in an enterprise requires highly skilled individuals to support its installation, maintenance, and optimization. These individuals are aided by the abundance of tools and wizards for effective operating system management that Microsoft has provided. Indeed, many of the enhanced tools should shift the traditional role of administrator to that of proactive manager of computing environments. Thus, the depth of function, flexibility, and granularity of Windows 2000/.NET ultimately represents both opportunity and challenge for system administration.

This book is written to help you succeed in the administration of the Windows .NET and Windows 2000 Server family. Much of the information it provides is also applicable to the desktop Professional versions of the software. Although the use and management of client software is incorporated, the server side is clearly our primary focus. In this preface, we provide a framework for the primary topics covered, define the target audience, and describe how to use this book.

The Role of the Administrator

Windows .NET will not eliminate the system administrator. To the contrary, features, such as the Active Directory and the Microsoft Management Console (MMC), will vastly broaden this role. Rather than spend time on mundane tasks and the management of dozens of disjointed tools, the consolidated approach provided by Windows .NET will free the administrator to concentrate on more mission-critical activities.

The functions of the Windows .NET system administrator are generally those that support the user population and those that support the system. The following list summarizes some of the most common responsibilities:

User-oriented tasks
  • Adding and removing users
  • Group management
  • User application support
  • End-user customer service, education, and communication
  • Management of basic services such as mail and printing
System-oriented tasks
  • Booting, shutdown, and everything in between
  • Backups and restoration
  • Hardware maintenance, additions, and removal
  • System accounting and monitoring
  • System administration logs
  • System security and password aging
  • Network support
  • General troubleshooting

Obviously, this list only scratches the surface of system administration and IT management. However, as a means of setting the reader's expectations, it does underscore the types of activities for which this book can be used as a guide.

Basis of Our Research

In preparing this book, we used three primary sources of information. First, we relied heavily on our combined professional experience in application development, system administration, and IT management. Unlike so many books written on theory by technical writers, our recommendations did not emerge from a vacuum but are based on reality and experiences. We hope the experience we bring to this book will assist fellow IT professionals to better manage an enterprise.

Second, we used observations from system administrators in the field to provide "reality checks" to our conclusions. Theoretical understanding of Windows .NET is a nice beginning, but it is no substitute for the actual experience of system administrators. Because Windows .NET is a new product, one of our primary sources was participants in Microsoft's Beta Program and their experience with final beta and final release versions of the operating system.

Finally, we performed extensive tests and simulated real-world environments in an extensive laboratory environment. The tests centered primarily on the Standard Server and Enterprise Server versions; however, Windows .NET Web Server edition and Windows XP was also tested and is periodically referenced as client software within the broader enterprise framework. Windows .NET DataCenter was not available for testing at the time this book was written, so references to it are based on published Microsoft specifications. Where differences exist in the version levels, we call attention to them.

Audience

The Ultimate Windows .NET Server System Administrator's Guide was written for system administrators and other IT professionals who manage a Windows .NET environment. Administrators coming from other operating system environments like UNIX will find many significant conceptual differences and numerous familiar technologies. Seasoned Windows 2000 and NT administrators will find many familiar aspects, but many significant differences as well, that will require a general updating of their technical skills. The addition of the Active Directory, a new domain model, advanced authentication technologies, and the enhanced MMC are just a few examples of entirely new or expanded operating system features.

Our aim was to produce an intermediate reference guide for administrators, leaving out specialized architectural or programming topics. Thus, this book should be used for an understanding of key concepts and for common "how-to" walkthrough support. Experienced professionals should find the discussions on operating system migration and the use of the new enhanced tools valuable. Those with moderate system administration experience can also benefit, but we assume these readers already have hands-on operating system experience. Novices will need to learn network and operating system fundamentals.

Attempting to provide useful information to an audience of system administrators was a challenge. Inevitably, some of the book's material may appear either overly basic or too advanced, and depending on a reader's level of experience, some discussions will be more helpful than others. To accommodate this wide variance in prior knowledge, we first cover each major topic from a conceptual basis and then expand this foundation with discussions on applying specific advanced Windows .NET functions.

System administrators coming from UNIX might find helpful our sister publication Windows NT and UNIX: Administration, Coexistence, Integration, and Migration (Addison-Wesley, 1998). For Windows 2000 administrators, look at The Ultimate Windows 2000 System Administrator's Guide (Addison-Wesley, 2000).

Organization

The book is organized into three parts and an appendix:

  • The first four chapters focus on Windows .NET concepts, deployment, and installation. They cover the role of the system administrator, Windows .NET features, operating system structure, and deployment and actual installation. Chapter 4 discusses getting started with tools such as the MMC.
  • The heart of the book, chapters 5 through 14, is a discussion of fundamental administration topics. In a series of very technical chapters, we cover the Active Directory, user management, group policies, security, printer and file services, networking, and other topics essential to Windows .NET system administration.
  • The last part of the book covers advanced tools and concepts. It examines the Internet Information Service (ISS) and optional components—Terminal Services, System Management Server (SMS), Indexing Services, Message Queuing Services (MQS), Cluster Services—and other topics applicable to enterprise-level system administration.
  • The appendix, Windows .NET Commands and Utilities, is a quick reference for the most significant commands in the operating system and in the Windows .NET Resource Kit.

A Glossary of common terms is also provided.

Other References

There is a wealth of information that should be used by system administrators to supplement this book. The Windows .NET operating system provides extensive online help available from the Start → Help facility. Microsoft also regularly posts white papers on its Web site, which should be regularly checked for updated information.

Trade magazines can also be an excellent source of information. We recommend Computer World, WindowsAdvantage.com, InformIT.COM, Windows 2000 Magazine (formerly Windows NT), ENT, MS Journal, and Dr. Dobb's Journal. As for online services, we strongly recommend Microsoft's security and patch e-mail service at www.microsoft.com/security/.Finally, we will be posting updated information about Windows 2000 and Windows .NET on our Web site at http://www.EnterpriseCertified.com/WinNetbook.htm.



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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 27, 2003

    More descriptive than analytic

    One should be skeptical of any book that has Ultimate in its title. But without necessarily concurring with that, Williams and Walla seem to have exhaustively included all the necessary topics for MS Server 2003. Some aspects mentioned are already overtaken by events. The book says 'don't be surprised if the names of the products just mentioned undergo change'. Indeed so. The .NET label is now deprecated by Microsoft, while the book says sysadmins should keep an eye on it. The book is good at the mechanistic how-to level. If you need to do a certain thing with this operating system, you can probably get good guidance here. It is not so great at critical analysis. Do not look here for a comparative assessment of WS2003 against linux or Solaris. For example, it says that now the user's personal settings can be stored centrally, so that she sees the same layout on any MS computer in the server's cluster. Wow. The various unixes had this in 1994. But maybe that is not the intent of the book, you might say. Ok. But then consider the recommendation that if you run a Datacenter, the minimum RAM should be 1Gbyte. That is a huge amount of memory. Why is it necessary? What portion is needed by a possibly bloated operating system, as opposed to that used by actual customer data? (In the authors' defence, Microsoft probably has not showed them the innards of WS2003.)

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