Hosted Windows Domain Controller

  • devilwood
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I need a windows server 2008 but I'm tired of creating computer closets in all my offices and sticking a server tower in the corner just to authenticate users on the network. I think we would come out better renting a dedicated server and just have the PCs connect to it over the internet. Do domains (i know it's deprecated) controllers / Active directories have to be local?
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Post 3+ Months Ago

  • Zealous
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Post 3+ Months Ago

If the server goes down then you can't login. Why don't you have a dedicated server for everything.

how big of a network we talking here?
  • devilwood
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Post 3+ Months Ago

5 people at each location. Probably around 20-30 people. We'd be looking at getting a dedicated server but centralized. Most of our locations have a small Dell server tower running Windows SMB and it handles their logons, email, and fileshare all locally. Most of the sites are starting to get 50+Mb download so I might just look into hosted desktop virtualization. I still like the local OS connected to a domain and the user just logs in, but I want a way to centralize that server in one dedicated server in the cloud. So, yeah if it goes down we can't login but it will be in a redundant environment. I'm more concerned with the ISP going down but we may add failover ISPs if we start saving money.
  • ATNO/TW
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Yes cloud hosting is not only possible, but in a situation like you have it is preferred. The company I work for actually does this very thing. I won't advertise it here, but if you are interested in finding out more about how it works, etc, check the link in my sig, or send me a PM.
  • devilwood
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I'm basically just wanting an AD in the cloud. Once the user logs into their profile then they can run all the programs installed on the PC, have access to network resources like printers/copiers and NAS shares. Complete hosted desktop solutions still seem too laggy and they don't appear to utilize PXE booting all that well which I'm confused about. One company is wanting us to use a RDP shortcut on the desktop to launch the connection where our users will have to login again. It's ridiculous. I'll check out your sig and PM you when I figure out more so I can follow along.
  • ATNO/TW
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Post 3+ Months Ago

This is the page you would be looking for
http://alexandrianetworks.com/services/ ... ate-cloud/

We have one client already with pretty much the same setup you are asking about.
  • MichaelMaxim
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Post 3+ Months Ago

We have several clients running this same config as ATNO mentioned. It's really a simple network design. Sometimes we put inexpensive HP ML110 servers at the local client site for AD authentication as backup domain controller and as a print server.

Depending on the client we either establish a point to point fiber connection (10MB min) to our data center directly into our rack or just to a site to site VPN from their remote firewalls to ours. We run VMware Enterprise 5 over redundant hosts in high availability cluster with SANs and redundant switching, etc. Everything from power to servers is N+1 redundant. We host our private cloud facility in Latisys and setup the entire infrastructure for our clients from start to finish.

If you can share a little bit more about what apps you're wanting to run or a bit more about your idea, we can help you spec this out. You're welcome to contact me offline to discuss in more detail. If it's just Active Directory in a centralized and redundant fashion with a file server, that's about as easy as it gets. If you want to deploy a terminal server running RemoteApps (that may be the RDP icon on the desktop that you're referring to) to publish apps for the remote users in conjunction with the file server, that's even more of robust solution that gives you centralized application deployment without going to a virtual desktop solution. We use this and a lot of our clients use it. It works well when you have many end-users running the same app. You install it and configure it in one place, deploy it via RemoteApps and then each user just gets an RDP file which makes the administration part of the app a breeze. Food for thought...
  • devilwood
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Thanks for the link. I didn't know that's the service that comprises this functionality.

Is it difficult to scale to add the RemoteApps at a later time?
  • MichaelMaxim
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Post 3+ Months Ago

It's really easy to add RemoteApps after the fact. Just add another server, join it to the domain, deploy your GPO's and then install/publish the applications.

If you are interested in learning more, send me or ATNO a PM. We'd be happy to have a conversation with you.

Thanks!
-MM

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