Verified and Tested 03/12/2015


In this how-to, we will walk you through Configuring Active Directory in Windows Server 2012.

Active Directory, also known as AD, is a service that comes with many Windows Server Operating Systems. It is used to manage Domain Networks distinguishing an administrator user and everyday users.

Once the AD DS role is installed, the server will need to be configured for your domain.


– A Server with Windows Server 2012. If you do not have a server already, you can visit our VPS Hosting page and spin a new server up in under 30 seconds.

– Active Directory(AD) installed on your server. See the following article, “Installing Active Directory in Windows Server 2012,” for more information.

Configuring Active Directory

Open the Server Manager from the taskbar.

Open the Notifications Pane by selecting the Notifications icon from the top of the Server Manager. From the notification regarding configuring AD DS, click Promote this server to a domain controller.

In server manager select Promote server to a domain controller

Promote Server


From the Deployment Configuration tab, select Add a new forest from the radial options menu. Insert your root domain name into the Root domain name field.

Under Deployment Configuration add a new forest and create your root domain name.

Deployment Configuration


Review and select a Domain and Forest functional level. Once selected, fill in a DSRM password in the provided password fields. The DSRM password is used when booting the Domain Controller into recovery mode.

Set you forest and domain level respective of your intrastructure requirements and create a password.

Domain Controller Options


Review the warning on the DNS Options tab and select Next.

Create a DNS delegation should you need.

DNS Options


Confirm or enter a NetBIOS name and click Next.

Under Additional Options create your NetBIOS domain name. This may be the same as your rood domain name.

Additional Options


Configure the location of the SYSVOL, Log files, and Database folders and click Next.

You may leave your paths default, or chose custom paths.



Review the configuration options and click Next.

Review your configuration and select Next

Review Options


The system will check to ensure all necessary prerequisites are installed on the system before moving forward. If the system passes these checks, you will proceed by clicking Install. Then, the system will automatically reboot.

Once you pass the prerequisite check you may proceed to complete the installation.

Prerequisite checks

Once the server has completed the reboot, reconnect via RDP.

Congratulations! You have just Configured Active Directory in Windows Server 2012. Thank you for following along in this How-To, and check back with us for any new updates.

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