Use caution when disabling the Windows Server service on your workstation

This tip is in response to a recent suggestion by Adesh Rampat in his tip, Disabling Windows 2000 default shares.

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Use caution when disabling the Windows Server service on your workstation. One of the consequences of not having this service running is that local password changes will not be synchronized with the domain controller. The workstation (WinNT or Win2k) password will expire and prompt the user to change it. The password dialog will accept the change, but the change will not be propogated to the domain controller.

There is no warning issued. At the next restart of the workstation, the user will not be authenticated to the domain. When the user calls the help desk for support, the system administrator will (no doubt) attempt to fix the problem by resetting the user's password. And that password will not be synchronized at the workstation either!

The mysteries will compound until someone checks for the server service at the PC -- or worse, send a desk-side technician to do an unnecessary re-install of the workstation OS!

This was first published in August 2001

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