Active Directory is the core of a Windows 2000 domain. Without AD, most of the features, benefits and security of Windows 2000 would not be possible. The trouble is that most system administrators may be very well versed at configuring AD containers and GPOs. However, when it comes down to the wire, many don't really understand how it all works, how to improve and optimize AD, or how to troubleshoot low-level problems.
I've run across a great article that discusses one of the essential elements of Active Directory: replication. Replication is widely known to be crucial in the health and operation of a domain. But few understand what it is and what exactly gets replicated.
The article discusses what replication is, when it happens and why it is important. These are all vital items to know, no matter how little or how much you are responsible for maintaining the health of your network. Once the foundation is established, the article goes on to discuss six tools and how to use them. The six tools are event viewer, replication monitor, domain controller diagnostics, repadmin, group policy verification and directory service agent statistics.
I highly recommend this article to anyone who uses Windows 2000 in a network environment. I also stress that you can learn even more by following the additional in-text links of keywords and topics scattered throughout the article.
James Michael Stewart is a partner and researcher for ITinfopros, a technology-focused writing and training organization.
This was first published in February 2003