What is Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS)?


Sath Inc

IDHub Team Member


Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS) are the primary functions in Microsoft’s Active Directory service platform.

Every Windows domain network begins with Active Directory and AD DS.

Active Directory DS complies and stores information regarding the network’s objects and resources, making this information easy to find and use by other authorized users and devices, found on the same network.

What is the Domain Controller?

The Domain Controller (DC) is a server computer used to validate user and application security privileges, to access information within the network.

When new requests are submitted, the DC is used to receive, authenticate, and respond to authentication requests across the network.

The DC controls access to all domain objects and resources according to the networks’ security policies.

Every time a user or application logs onto any device or resource within the network, AD DS contacts the Domain Controller for authentication.

What type of information does Active Directory Store?

Active Directory DS stores user and application data which may include items like name, office line, email, and passwords. This data is made available to other users within the same network, who have proper authorization. This store is called the Directory.

Active Directory organizes information in a logical hierarchical structure, by using an organized data store.

Active Directory DS allows administrators and users to access any information or resources which they have permission to use from a single network logon.

To simplify the management of complex networks, Active Directory uses policy-based administration.

What is Azure Active Directory Domain Service?

Azure Active Directory Domain Services (Azure AD DS) are very similar to the traditional AD DS, however, the primary difference is that this service is managed in the cloud on Microsoft Azure.

Azure AD DS is hosted as a managed Platform as a service (PaaS). This version is compatible with the traditional windows AD DS, and also will integrate with Azure AD.

The possible downsides to this implementation are that since the DNS server is managed, there is no Domain, or Enterprise Admin Account, or extending schema.

This also means that there are no Domain or Enterprise administrator privileges and that forest trusts are only one-way.

Another consideration is that Kerberos delegation is restricted based on your account level and that there are no Geo-distributed deployments.

Azure AD Alternatives

The limitations of Azure AD are not prohibitive for many basic on-premises Active Directory installs.

However, for advanced organizations that are looking to incorporate IAM upgrades to their systems, there is an alternative to Azure AD that provides additional functionality to get more out of your Identity Management Solution.

IDHub provides advanced features that take IDM to a new level extending the usability of the software in ways not considered before in the realm of Identity Management.

IDHub allows your technology team the ability to remove themselves from the day-to-day maintenance and provisioning tasks historically associated with Identity Management.

This re-allocation of resources frees up your most critical employees’ time to dedicate to more pressing issues while giving Managers and regular users the power to create custom process flows to tailor their onboarding and software usage policies and protocols to best suit their needs.

Review IDHub for yourself and see what is possible or schedule a one-on-one walkthrough.


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