When Microsoft introduced Windows 2000, the most important change was the inclusion of Active Directory. With many great benefits, it continues to be a huge headache for network and system administrators to design, implement and support. The first edition of this book, O'Reilly's best-selling Windows 2000 Active Directory, eased their pain considerably. Now titled Active Directory, 2nd Edition, this book provides system and network administrators, IT professionals, technical project managers, and programmers with a clear, detailed look at Active Directory for both Windows 2000 and Windows Server 2003.The upgraded Active Directory that ships with Windows Server 2003 has over 100 new and enhanced features and once again, O'Reilly has the answers to puzzling questions. While Microsoft's documentation serves as an important reference, Active Directory, 2nd Edition is a guide to help the curious (and weary) understand the big picture. In addition to the technical details for implementing Active Directory, several new and significantly enhanced chapters describe the numerous features that have been updated or added in Windows Server 2003 along with coverage of new programmatic interfaces that are available to manage it. After reading the book you will be familiar with the Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP), multi-master replication, Domain Name System (DNS), Group Policy, and the Active Directory Schema, among many other topics.Authors Robbie Allen and Alistair G. Lowe-Norris are experienced veterans with real-world experience. Robbie is a Senior Systems Architect in the Advanced Services Technology Group at Cisco Systems. He was instrumental in the deployment and automation of Active Directory, DNS and DHCP at Cisco, and is now working on network automation tools. Alistair is an enterprise program manager for Microsoft U.K. and previously worked for Leicester University as the project manager and technical lead of the Rapid Deployment Program for Windows 2000.Active Directory, 2nd Edition will guide you through the maze of concepts, design issues and scripting options enabling you to get the most out of your deployment.