Joining the Network


Joining a Domain


Creating a Computer Account

After creating a domain, you can can add client computers to it. In our examples, we will add workstations that run Microsoft Windows XP Professional or Windows Vista. There are two actions required to add a client to a Microsoft Windows Server 2003 domain but only one is required.

Before physically or electronically adding a client to a domain, you can first create a computer account for it. To create a computer account on Microsoft Windows Server 2003, you have various alternatives:

  • If using the Manage Your Server window, you can click Manage Users And Computers In Active Directory
  • You can also click Start -> Administrative Tools -> Active Directory Users And Computers
  • You can also click Start -> Control Panel -> Administrative Tools -> Active Directory Users And Computers

Any of these actions would open the Active Directory Users and Computers window. In the left frame, expand the name of the domain. Then you can right-click the name of the domain -> New -> Computer. This would open the New Object - Computer dialog box. In the Computer Name text box, enter the name of the computer. The operating systems before Windows 2000 don't use very long names. Therefore, when naming a computer, keep this in mind and give a name made of fewer than 15 characters. After naming the computer, click Next twice and click Finish.

Instead of right-clicking the name of the domain, in the Active Directory Users And Computers, you can expand the name of the domain, right-click the Computers node -> New -> Computer. As mentioned already, in the first page of the New Object - Computer wizard, you can type a name for the computer. Here is an example:

Then click Next, Next, and Finish.


Joining a Domain

After creating an account for a computer, you can add it to the domain. This is referred to as joining a domain. Normally, primarily creating an account for a computer is not required although it's a good idea. When joining a domain, if the computer you are adding doesn't have one already, an account would be created for it.

To join a domain using Microsoft Windows XP Professional:

  1. First display the System Properties dialog box. To do this,
    • You can right-click My Computer and click Properties...
    • You can display Control Panel and double-click System
  2. In the System Properties, click Computer Name
  3. Click Change...
  4. In the Computer Name text box, enter the desired name of the computer. If you had already created an account in the domain for this computer, type that name
  5. In the Member Of section, click the Domain radio button
  6. Click the Domain text box and enter the name of the domain
  7. After specifying the name of the computer and the domain to join, click OK
  8. You would then be asked to asked to provide a user name and a password for a user who has the permissions to join let a computer join a domain
  9. After entering a user and a password, click OK. If you have the right to add computers to the domain, you would receive a Welcome message and click OK:
  10. Once you click OK, you will be asked to restart the computer, which you should do. Therefore, in the System Properties dialog box, click OK
  11. When asked whether you want to restart the computer, click Yes
  12. After the computer has restarted, when it displays the Log On To Windows dialog box, click the arrow of the Log On To combo box and select the name of the domain
  13. If necessary, change the User Name in the top text box.
    In the Password text box, enter the password associated with the user name
  14. Click OK

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