New domain: .com or .local?

November 15, 2011 at 12:00:36
Specs: Windows XP
I have a friend with a small consulting firm. Right now, all his PCs are managed individually and he'd like to streamline it, so he's asked me to help set him up a Windows domain. All that I'm fine with, but I have one silly question:

His website, company.com, is currently hosted elsewhere. Does that mean that the FQDN of his new domain cannot be company.com? Should it be company.local? Or can I use company.com and make sure to keep the DNS straight or something? How's it work?

Thanks.


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#1
November 15, 2011 at 12:30:59
There's nothing to stop you using company.com. You need to use the Windows server as the DNS server for your domain and add a record in it for your external server(s) - i.e. web and/or mail. It's really as simple as that. The outside world won't know about your internal network as they see the external DNS server when looking up records for your domain.

Things get (slightly) more complicated if you want servers on your local domain to be visible to the rest of the world but, if I understand correctly, that's not the case. I've used this sort of setup both with a home network and with an enterprise network consisting of thousands of computers.


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#2
November 15, 2011 at 12:51:38
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/...

Most prefer to do internet as company.com and intranet as company.local. There is no confusion from a workstation point of view. After all if both were company.com which server would be the correct one to go to?

Microsoft's recommendation is to use company.com but for your intranet you would use something like intranet.company.com so again a workstation is not confused as to where to go.

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#3
November 15, 2011 at 13:08:46
I'm not quite sure what you mean by a workstation being confused which server to go to. If you mean different servers for external web and internal intranet (although that doesn't seem to be the OP's current requirement), you just call them "www" and "intranet". I think that "www" would be an inappropriate name for an intranet server, anyway - it's not exactly world-wide. I can't see any other confusion.

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#4
November 15, 2011 at 13:12:19
What about for a non-www address, like http://company.com?

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#5
November 15, 2011 at 13:35:39
The normal convention is for just the domain name to be an alias for www.company.com, but I guess it can be any server that you want. Personally, I prefer all addresses to be the computer name prepended to the domain. This is just a matter of what records you put in the DNS.

How many web servers do you have? Just the external one or internal ones too?


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#6
November 15, 2011 at 13:51:52
ijack what I am talking about is Active Directory. You have a AD domain company.com. You have a internet address company.com

Same name but different ip addresses. This is a known issue.

for example from the link above
"Caution

When planning your DNS and Active Directory namespace, it is recommended that you use a differing set of distinguished names that do not overlap as the basis for your internal and external DNS use
For internal DNS names usage you could use a name such as "internal.example.microsoft.com"

For external DNS names usage you could use a name such as "external.example.microsoft.com"

By keeping your internal and external namespaces separate and distinct in this way, you enable simplified maintenance of configurations such as domain name filter or exclusion lists."

What you are talking about is referred to as split brain dns
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Split-...

which gets a lot more complicated

http://searchwindowsserver.techtarg...

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#7
November 15, 2011 at 14:35:55
I see what you mean, but I wouldn't have thought it was an issue in a simple case like this. As I understand it the Internet and Active Directory domains are totally discrete, each with their own DNS server, so I can't see any problems arising. I found in my case that users were happier to have the same domain name for their Active Directory sign-on as for other things, such as e-mail addresses. They really weren't aware, and didn't need to be, of the distinction between the two domains.

I can see that in a more complicated setup there could be problems.


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#8
November 16, 2011 at 13:05:07
So basically...

If I go with company.com for the domain name, dc.company.com as the DC/DNS:

Let's say dc.company.com is 10.0.0.10 and www.company.com is 68.8.8.8.

If, from an internal PC, I type www.company.com into a browser, it will resolve to 68.8.8.8 and load the site. But if I just type company.com, it will resolve to 10.0.0.10, and since there are no web services running on the DC, it will fail. Does that pretty much sum it up?


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#9
November 16, 2011 at 13:38:30
IE automatically puts the http and www on company.com when I tried it.

Did you read the link? Might want to review some of the other dns info there on technet.

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