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Setting Up A Domain on Windows XP

Going from a workgroup to a domain-based network...



9:59 pm on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Can I go from a workgroup-based network to a domain-based network in Windows XP Professional? If so, what are some of the pitfalls that I should look out for?

I'd like to install MS Exchange 2003, and already have SMTP and all setup, but the last step is to join a domain.

Could I join a domain on the server that hosts my SQL database? I've never dealt with MS Exchange so I'd appreciate any tips you guys can provide. Thanks.


5:10 pm on Feb 10, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

To answer your question more fully you will need to go into more detail about what servers you are currentkly running etc. However Exchange 2003 depends upon Active Directory for its functionality. In a nutshell you will need to have a Windows 2000/2003 Server and promote it to a Domain Controller using the dcpromo.exe utility (Dont forget to set up DHCP and DNS before hand). Once you have created the active directory structure you will then need to add the various computers on the network into it, users to active directory etc.

I guess from your question you are not well versed in all of this so you might be advised to start with a good book.

Failing this try the Windows 2003 Small Business Server on a test machine as this will set up most of what you require using wizards.


8:34 pm on Feb 10, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Yeah, I'm just getting into SQL and was told by my host that I needed MS Exchange to download, manage, backup, and upload my SQL database from a local source. My tables ocassionally need appending as I update the online apps I'm developing, and I wanted some way to do this efficiently - as it takes a year and a freakin' day to do it to an online SQL DB.

I have everything else that's required to run Exchange, besides having a domain setup. I'm starting to realize that I cannot setup domains on XP Pro.

After a bit of research, I also think I may have found a workaround. I have Enterprise Manager setup, and SOMEHOW - by DLing a bunch of updates and such ("SQL desktop" or something like that), I am running SQL on my computer - which is really weird to me since I only installed the Enterprise Manager and not SQL Server (since I assumed the SQL Server demo would expire eventually.)

Through a few hours of knocking around with Data Sources, I have SQLmgr loading up at boot, and after DLing those updates from the MS site, I now have a little tray icon that sources back to my IIS root.

So now I can use Enterprise Manager to connect to the online SQL DB, and I can backup the file to the IIS root folder and then load and edit it on my mysterious local server that happens to exist now. lol

I'm such a n00b at this since I've used Access for the last four years - but at least I'm a n00b with the functionality he's looking for. :)

This is extremely foriegn territory for me, and I attribute it much more to luck than skill... so any explaination as to why this is working now, or tips, would be appreciated.



11:24 pm on Feb 10, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Your explanation makes more sense now although you are well off the mark!

Exchange has nothing to do with SQL, exchange is a mail server /messaging client. It allows Email to be routed around the company, shared address books to be set up and things like that.

SQL Server however is managed using the Enterprise Manager and/or Query Analyser. These can be used to manage SQL Server databases either locally or across a network (including the internet). Your version of Enterprise Manager was probably installed from the trial version and you are probably managing MSDE through it. MSDE being the Microsoft Data Engine which is a cut down version of SQL Server. MSDE is a Free download and often gets installed alongside other products.

There is no problem doing that but if you need this for development work you would be better off buying the developer copy of SQL Server which is about £25 (I dont know where you are located in the world) and using this instead. This will give you the full version of SQL Server with all functionality, although only licenced for development.

You do not require a Domain or Active Directory to install SQL Server and the developer version will run just fine on Windows XP. You wouldn't want to run a production copy on XP as SQL Server takes much of its security from Active Directory which isnt on XP. On XP you can just set it up with username/password combinations.

Once you have the Enterprise Manager installed on your workstation you should be able to connect to the remote database across the internet and use the facilities to carry out normal management (according to what is allowed by the security at the other end).

As a point of interest i find it useful to keep two database copies, one live one and one local just incase!

I hope this makes things a little clearer.

Martyn Fewtrell


7:21 am on Feb 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Thanks so much for taking the time out to answer my n00bish questions.

I knew the "advice" about getting Exchange was a bit off as soon as had me setup SMTP. I was thinking to myself, "Okaaay, and what does this have to do with downloading a database?"

I'm actually an advanced user, but this was the first in a long time that I felt like a foreigner while installing a new application. I just shook my head, smiled, and did the best with the advice I was given.

So now I have SQL 2000 with a developer's license. I was surprised how cheap it was compared to the full licenses (only about $50.) I also agree with what you said about keeping a local copy as well... in fact, that's the entire reason why I'm going to these lengths. I liked the ability to download and backup my MS Access DBs, and wanted that same type of peace-of-mind when switching to, what amounts to, a much more complex DB type.

One last thing: Should I just get any of these updates?


SQL2KASP2.exe - size: 39335
sql2kdeskfullsp2.exe - size: 390334
SQL2KDeskSP2.exe - size: 26903

SQL2KSP2.exe - size: 49943 (this one seems the most logical)


11:40 am on Feb 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I'm glad you are getting there. Once you get the hang of things you will find SQL much easier to use than access and probably wont want to go back to access again.

With respect to updates I normally install all critical updates/security patches although I assume as your's is a development machine, you wont be exposing the Database to the Internet, so updates become less important. One good policy is to find out what updates your ISP puts on and then match them. That way when you are working you know that you are on a level playing field. What works at your end should also work at the other.

Wish you luck.

Martyn Fewtrell


10:14 pm on Mar 6, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Hi Martyn

I got reading through this thread and found it very informative. I to am just getting started with asp and am using access at the moment.I would really like to make the switch over to SQL. I am running windows xp pro, and I would like to set up SQL server on my computer to learn and develop a SQL database locally.(eventually I would be uploading it to my web hosting server). So am I right in assuming that the first step I will need to take is to aquire and install a copy of the developer addition of SQL server?



9:21 am on Mar 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Yes, your first step is to get hold of a copy of SQL Server.

Historically people use to start with MSDE (Microsoft Data Engine) as this is Free but does not come with any administrative software. Once installed you have to work with it using command line instructions, visual studio or get hold of a third party interface.

More recently Microsoft had dropped the cost of the SQL Developer version to such an extent that I canít see any value in starting off with MSDE. The Developer version comes with full functionality and all the admin tools so it is actually much easier to work with than MSDE. Obviously the Developer version canít be used in a production environment but as I would assume you will use third parties to host your sites/databases this should be an issue.

Both of the above software will run quite adequately on XP Pro provided you have a fair amount of power and donít intend to work the database to hard. Once you are up and running you probably wonít want to go back and use access again as the stored procedures on SQL make life so much easier.

Hope this help and good luck.

Martyn Fewtrell


3:56 pm on Mar 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Thanks alot Martyn
I really appreciate you taking the time to reply. I think I will order the developer addition then, (they got a good deal on it at amazon)I'll let you know how I get on. Have you had any experience with MySQL? I was doing a little browsing around about that and they claim that it is some what easier to use. Any thoughts?

Thanks again


4:32 pm on Mar 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I'm afraid I know very little about MySql. From my perspective Microsoft rule the roost!

I'm not saying that they necessarily have the best products but they definitely have market dominance. As a result from a purely commercial point of view there are more job opportunities if you have knowledge of Microsoft products than other products, so I as a result concentrate my skills on their products.

There all sorts of idealistic arguments against this approach but in the real world I have to pay the mortgage.

Martyn Fewtrell


3:36 pm on Mar 30, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

After installing SQL server 2000 Developer Edition when I try to install any other software like baseline security analzer or try to do a system restore the process starts but then hangs and when I open task manager it says the system is not responding. I am thinking it is some kind of security issue but any help would be great, I been trying to figure this out for hours.



8:30 am on Mar 31, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I'm afraid I canít help you on this one; MS SQL has thousands of installations all over the world so I find it hard to believe that it is the route cause of the issue.

Obviously you could uninstall SQL to see if the problem goes away but other than search the knowledge base and web I canít suggest much else with what you have given us so far.

Marytn Fewtrell


4:14 pm on Apr 13, 2005 (gmt 0)

I'd make sure you have all the latest windows updates first and if you still can't load a resore point then try in safe mode. To get into safemode tap F8 after BIOS loads (the screen that lists your memory/processor speed or a giant logo in the case of some motherboard manufacturers) Keep tapping it until you get a list that has something like this:

Start windows in safe mode
Start windows in safe mode with networking

and some other things I can't remember. Pick the safe mode with networking option if you need to connect to the network while in safemode. When safe mode first launches it should ask you if you want to load a restore point so if that's what you're doing, I'd say yes. Good luck!


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