Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS): Full Installation Guide

What is Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS)?

Active Directory Domain Services is a server role that allows admins to store and manage resources in a distributed database within a network. The main function of an AD DS role is to store data and manage communication  between users and domain controllers. It also controls information rights and data access policies.

I have already given a brief explanation of Active Directory Domain Services in my previous post. To read the full article about logical components of Active Directory Domain Services, Click here
In this article we will discuss all the necessary installation steps of Active Directory domain services in Windows server 2016. Let’s begin,

How to Install Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS) Roles?

  • Open server manager >> go to dashboard >> Add roles and features
  • Open server manager >> Manage >> Add roles and features

Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS): Full Installation Guide

  • Next

Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS): Full Installation Guide

  • Select Radio button (o) Role-based or feature-based installation >> Next

Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS): Full Installation Guide

  • Choose radio button (o) Select a server from the server pool >> Next

Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS): Full Installation Guide

  • Select [] Active Directory Domain services

Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS): Full Installation Guide

  • Add features >> Next >> next >> next
  • Select [] restart the destination server automatically if required >> Click on YES then.
  • Click on Install

  • You will be prompted to Close after the following page

How to Promote a Server as a Domain Controller (DC) after Active Directory Installation?

  • Go to dashboard of server manager (you can see a notification symbol above)
    >> Click on the notification icon
    >> Promote the server as domain controller

  • Select O Add a new forest
    >> Give the root domain or the forest root domain name
    >> Next

  • Forest functional level

  • Domain functional level

>> Next

>> Next

>> Next

>> Next

Database folder path:
Log files folder path: C:\windows\NTDS
SYSVOL folder path: C:\windows\Sysvol

You can now check your configuration details by clicking View script

If you followed all above steps properly then you will surely get this page where you can see all prerequisite check successfully

>> Click Install >> An automatic reboot will be done next

After reboot the server manager looks like this,

Active Directory Domain Services
Active Directory Domain Services

You can see that AD DS is installed 

You can also see your domain name in the local server menu

How to Check that AD DS Role is Installed properly?

  • Open server manager >> Tools

*** If you can see the highlighted features on your system then it is confirmed that the Active Directory Domain services (AD DS) role is installed and configured. The highlighted features are,

  • Active Directory Administrative Centre 
  • Active Directory Domain and Trusts
  • Active Directory Module for Windows PowerShell
  • Active Directory Sites and services
  • Active Directory Users and Computers
  • ADSI Edit

How to Join Client PC into Domain?

To join a client server,

  • Go to client PC >> Open server manager >> Go to local server >> Workgroup

  • Click on Change

  • Select radio button (O) Domain >> Give the domain name >> Select more

  • Give the primary Domain Name System (DNS) suffix

>> Ok


  • Give the Domain Controller Credential

    >> Ok >> Ok
  • Close >> Restart now

That’s all for this article. Hope this helps you. Please subscribe our site and give feedback.

Click to know all about,

D DS-Active Directory Domain Services

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