The remnants of Windows NT on Win2k Active Directory

It will be impossible to migrate to Windows 2000 without having some machines still running Windows NT Workstation or, possibly, Server. This tip will look at two specific areas in which NT conventions will be used in Windows 2000.

From Windows 2000 Active Directory by Alistair G. Lowe-Norris, O'Reilly and Associates, 2000.

How policies apply to clients with different operating systems

If you have a Windows NT 4.0 client in a workgroup or a domain, the only policies that can apply are downlevel Windows NT 4.0 policy (POL) file policies.

If you have a standalone Windows 2000 client or member server, policies are evaluated in the following order:

  • Downlevel Windows NT 4.0 policy (POL) file:
  • Windows 2000 local GPO (Group policies)

If you have a Windows 2000 client or member server in a mixed-mode domain, policies are evaluated in the following order:

  • Downlevel Windows NT 4.0 policy (POL) file
  • Windows 2000 local GPO
  • Site GPOs in priority order
  • Domain GPOs in priority order
  • Organizational Unit GPOs in priority order, applied in a hierarchical fashion down the tree ending with the Organizational Unit that the computer or user resides in

As this extends the LSDOU process to include Windows

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NT 4.0 system policies, this process is commonly written as 4LSDOU.

If you have a Windows 2000 client server in a native-mode domain, policies are evaluated in LSDOU order.

When to use the LDAP and WinNT namespaces

Contrary to popular belief, just because the WinNT namespace is used to access Windows NT Servers, does not mean it is of little use to us here with Windows 2000. Actually, while the LDAP namespace is used to access Active Directory, the WinNT namespace is used to access users, groups, and other objects on individual computers. Active Directory only exists on DCs (Domain Controllers) in your enterprise. If you have a server or a client that is a member of a workgroup or a domain running Windows NT or Windows 2000, that machine also will have objects on it. These could be local users, such as Administrator or Guest, printers, shares, and so on. Obviously, these objects are not part of Active Directory if they are unique to the machine. As individual machines do not support direct access via LDAP, you have to use another method, and that method is the WinNT namespace.

Go to Windows 2000 Active Directory to purchase this book.

This was first published in May 2000

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