Configuring Networking Settings

Although most computers will be properly set up for network access during Windows Setup, you might need to change these settings at some point—possibly immediately if the specified settings were wrong or incomplete. This section explains how to get a server running properly on a network.

Changing Your Network Identity

Change is sometimes necessary—although with a server, it's better to spend your time planning first than to have to make changes later. However, as Robbie Burns might have said while reconfiguring his server, "The best laid schemes o' mice and men gang aft a-gley." So even with careful planning, you can discover that a machine needs to have a different name or needs to be joined to a different domain.

To change the identity of a server that isn't a domain controller, log on using an administrator's account and follow these steps:

  1. Open the System tool in Control Panel, and then click the Network Identification tab.
  2. To change your computer name and domain or workgroup membership, select Properties. Then enter the new name for your computer in the New Computer Name text box in the Identification Changes dialog box, as shown in Figure 6-5.

    Figure 6-5. The Identification Changes dialog box.

  3. To change the domain or workgroup you belong to, choose either the Domain option or the Workgroup option, and then type the domain or workgroup name in the text box.
  4. Click More to manually specify the domain name for your computer and to preview the NetBIOS name for your system. Click OK when you're finished.

Changing the identity of a domain controller is a multistep process. First you must demote the domain controller by running DCPROMO. Then you can change the identity, and finally you can promote the domain controller again. The steps for this process are detailed in Chapter 11.

Real World

Naming Computers

It's a good idea to use a computer name that is both DNS-compatible and NetBIOS-compatible so that all types of clients see the same name for your computer. To do this, make the name 15 characters or fewer and don't use asterisks or periods. To obtain the best application compatibility, try to avoid using spaces, underscores, and hyphens.

Configuring Network Components

To add or change the settings for core network components such as clients, services, and protocols, open the Network and Dial-Up Connections folder, right-click the Local Area Connection icon, and choose Properties from the shortcut menu. This procedure opens the Local Area Connection Properties dialog box shown in Figure 6-6, which you can use to view and change your server's networking components.

Figure 6-6. The Local Area Connection Properties dialog box.

The top of the dialog box shows the network adapter to which you are binding networking services. Beneath that is the media access control (MAC) address for the network interface card, the unique identifier of your network card that is used for communications with other hosts in your subnet.

To install a network component, select Install, choose the type of component you want to install (Client, Service, or Protocol), and then click Add. Select the component from the list presented and click OK. To configure the component (if the component has a configurable option), select the component and click Properties.

If you have a multihomed server (a server with more than one network adapter), give your local area connections a name indicating to which network the adapters are connected. To do so, right-click the connections in the Network and Dial-Up Connections folder and choose Rename from the shortcut menu.

Configuring TCP/IP

TCP/IP is the most important protocol in today's networks, and it's the backbone for Microsoft's vision of networking in Windows 2000 and beyond. The protocol is well suited to enterprise networking, and it's required for accessing the Internet. If you're unfamiliar with TCP/IP, see Chapter 13 for an introduction.

Before installing and configuring protocols on your network, review the checklists in the Windows 2000 Help files. Once you understand the following three areas, you can install all the necessary interlocking pieces.

  • TCP/IP concepts such as IP addressing, subnet masks, and gateways
  • Whether your network supports DHCP to configure TCP/IP dynamically
  • How computers on your network will handle name resolution

Installing TCP/IP

TCP/IP is installed as the default network protocol if a network adapter was detected during installation. If the default was overridden during installation, you can add TCP/IP by following these steps:

  1. Click Start, select Settings, and then choose Network And Dial-Up Connections.
  2. Right-click the connection for which you want to install TCP/IP, and choose Properties from the shortcut menu.
  3. If TCP/IP isn't in the list of components used, as shown in Figure 6-6, click Install.
  4. Select Protocol, and click Add.
  5. In the Select Network Protocol box, select Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) and click OK.
  6. Verify that the Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) check box is selected, and then click OK.

Using Dynamic Addressing

The easiest and most reliable way to configure machines on a network running the TCP/IP suite is to use a DHCP server to automatically distribute IP addresses. DHCP can also inform clients of the appropriate DNS servers and gateways to use. A DHCP server not only simplifies client configuration, but it also saves headaches for the poor soul who would otherwise have to track the use of IP addresses, because it manages the database of available IP addresses dynamically and automatically.

Dynamic addressing using DHCP is the Windows 2000 default setting. If you need to check this or change a statically assigned host to a dynamically configured host, follow these steps:

  1. Select the Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) component in your Local Area Connection Properties dialog box, and click Properties (Figure 6-7).

    Figure 6-7. The General tab of the Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) Properties dialog box.

  2. Select the Obtain An IP Address Automatically option. However, don't select this option on a machine that is to act as a DHCP server. A DHCP server must have a fixed, static IP address.
  3. Select the Obtain DNS Server Address Automatically option if your DHCP server is set up to provide the DNS server addresses to clients; otherwise, select the Use The Following DNS Server Addresses option, and enter the IP addresses for the DNS servers you want to use.

Real World

Assigning IP Addresses for DNS and WINS Servers

When setting up a DNS or WINS server, it's tempting to use a static IP address. Although this is an acceptable use of static IP addresses, a better method for many networks is to allow the server to obtain an address from the DHCP server and then create an IP reservation for the server with an unlimited lease duration on the DHCP server. This step gives the server a permanent lease on the IP address it was assigned, ensuring that the IP address of the DNS server won't change, at the same time allowing the DHCP administrator to easily take back the address if the server is moved or decommissioned. See Chapter 14 for information on creating reservations on a DHCP server.

Using Static Addressing

If your network doesn't have a DHCP server or if you're setting up a DHCP server, you need to manually configure TCP/IP to use a static IP address and DNS information. To do this, obtain an IP address from the person who maintains the database of IP addresses that your organization can use. If using DHCP, all DHCP servers also need to be updated to exclude your static IP address.

To set up a system with a static IP address, follow these steps:

  1. Select the Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) component in the Local Area Connection Properties dialog box, and click Properties.
  2. Select the Use The Following IP Address option, enter the address you obtain in the IP Address text box, and then press Tab to automatically fill in the default subnet mask. Most likely, you'll be able to use the default subnet mask, but if your network is using a specific subnet mask, you need to find the proper mask and enter it in the Subnet Mask text box.
  3. Enter the IP address for your default gateway or router in the Default Gateway text box. The default gateway forwards, or routes, any traffic destined for hosts outside your local subnet, possibly to another portion of your wide area network (WAN) or to the Internet.
  4. Choose the Use The Following DNS Server Addresses option to specify the IP addresses for your DNS servers. Enter the primary and secondary DNS server addresses in the text boxes provided.

The DNS service is critical for resolving host names such as into IP addresses that your computer can access. Without the DNS service, users could access resources only by typing in their IP addresses directly or by broadcasting their NetBIOS names (which only works on local subnets and consumes lots of network bandwidth).

Setting Advanced TCP/IP Options

If you aren't using a DHCP server to configure your server's IP address and associated settings and you need to enter other settings besides just your server's IP address and DNS servers, select Advanced in the TCP/IP Properties dialog box. This opens the Advanced TCP/IP Settings dialog box, shown in Figure 6-8, which you use to specify additional settings, including WINS servers, NetBIOS over TCP/IP, and optional TCP/IP parameters. Chapter 13 contains more information about configuring TCP/IP.

Figure 6-8. The IP Settings tab of the Advanced TCP/IP Settings dialog box.

Configuring IP Settings The Advanced TCP/IP Settings dialog box contains four tabs, the first of which is the IP Settings tab. You use this tab to add the IP address and subnet mask for your network connection and the gateways your server should use. To change the options on this tab, follow these steps:

  1. Use the Add, Edit, and Remove buttons in the IP Addresses box to modify your IP address and subnet mask settings.
  2. To add a default gateway or router, click Add and enter the IP address for the router.
  3. Now add the interface metric for the connection. The interface metric assigns a relative cost to using a particular router to access a particular IP address. Assign lower interface metrics with routers connecting to fast networks, such as another section of a local network; assign higher numbers to slower connections, such as an Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN) or a slow digital subscriber line (DSL) connection to the Internet.

Configuring DNS Settings Click the DNS tab to access the advanced DNS settings for your network connection, as shown in Figure 6-9. Then use the following procedure to configure your DNS settings:

  1. Use the Add, Edit, and Remove buttons in the DNS Addresses box to add or modify the DNS servers you want to use for this connection. Use the up and down arrows next to the box to change the order in which your server queries the DNS servers.
  2. Select the appropriate options for unqualified names:
    • Append Primary And Connection Specific DNS Suffixes Limits the resolution for unqualified names to the domain suffixes and connection-specific suffixes. If your primary DNS suffix is and you type ping srv4 at a command prompt, DNS looks for If you also specify a connection-specific name (under DNS Suffix For This Connection), such as, DNS queries and
    • Append Parent Suffixes Of The Primary DNS Suffix Includes parent suffixes up to the second-level domain in the resolution of unqualified names. So if the primary DNS suffix is and you type ping srv4 at a command prompt, DNS queries for the following:
    • Append These DNS Suffixes (In Order) Specifies the only domain suffixes to be appended to unqualified domain names during the name resolution process. If you specify domain suffixes here, the primary and connection-specific suffixes are not used.

    Figure 6-9. The DNS tab of the Advanced TCP/IP Settings dialog box.

  3. To override the parent DNS domain name specified for your computer in the Network Identification tab of the System Properties Control Panel tool, type the DNS domain name you want to use in the DNS Suffix For This Connection text box.
  4. To prevent the full DNS name of your server's IP address from being registered with the DNS server, clear the Register This Connection's Addresses In DNS check box.
  5. To register the IP addresses of your network connections in DNS based on the domain name of the connections as well as by the fully qualified domain name (FQDN) for your server, select the Register This Connection's DNS Suffix In DNS Registration check box. The domain name of the connection is entered in the DNS Suffix For This Connection text box or assigned by the DHCP server.

Configuring WINS Settings To configure the WINS settings for your computer, click the WINS tab in the Advanced TCP/IP Settings dialog box (Figure 6-10). If WINS servers are operating on your network, you should add their addresses here. Doing so gives you the best results when communicating with hosts that are running Microsoft operating systems earlier than Windows 2000. As with the other tabs in the Advanced TCP/IP Settings dialog box, use the Add, Edit, and Remove buttons to modify your WINS server list. For a more thorough discussion of when to use WINS servers on your network, see Chapter 14.

Figure 6-10. The WINS tab of the Advanced TCP/IP Settings dialog box.

To enable the use of an Lmhosts file for resolving NetBIOS names to IP addresses, select the Enable LMHOSTS Lookup check box, and click Import LMHOSTS to import an Lmhosts file. We recommend using Lmhosts files only when absolutely necessary because trying to keep them up-to-date can be tricky—the minuscule reduction of network traffic that Lmhosts files offer isn't worth it.

When you configure a WINS server, use the Ipconfig command at a command prompt to obtain your current IP address, and then enter that address in the WINS Addresses field. Don't enter any other WINS server in this field; you don't want your WINS server registering its NetBIOS name with another WINS server if WINS hasn't started in time to respond at bootup.

In all likelihood, you'll need to communicate with clients that are running Microsoft operating systems earlier than Windows 2000, so make sure the Enable NetBIOS Over TCP/IP option is selected. Disable this only if you communicate exclusively with other computers running Windows 2000 or computers that rely solely on DNS for name resolution services (for example, UNIX). Also, note that any applications that use NetBIOS won't work if you disable NetBIOS Over TCP/IP.

Configuring TCP/IP Options If you need to configure any TCP/IP options, click the Options tab in the Advanced TCP/IP Settings dialog box. Select an option you want to configure, and then click Properties. For more information about TCP/IP properties and secure TCP/IP connections, see Chapter 13.

Configuring NWLink IPX/SPX

The NWLink IPX/SPX protocol was designed as an easy-to-use-and-configure, routable protocol that is compatible with NetWare's IPX/SPX protocol. As such, it used to be a popular protocol in many companies and can still be useful in maintaining interoperability with older network environments. For detailed information about interoperating with NetWare, see Chapter 21.

Fortunately, configuring the NWLink IPX/SPX protocol is easy. Just follow these steps:

  1. Install the protocol in the Local Area Connection Properties dialog box, which can be accessed by right-clicking the Local Area Connection icon in the Network and Dial-Up Connections folder and then selecting Properties.
  2. Select the protocol and click Properties.
  3. To advertise the services running on your server (such as File and Print Services For NetWare or IPX routing) to native NetWare clients, enter a unique eight-digit hexadecimal number in the Internal Network Number text box (Figure 6-11) to identify your server.
  4. In most cases, you can also let Windows 2000 handle your frame type detection by selecting the Auto Frame Type Detection option. Windows 2000 then detects the proper frame type by sending out a Routing Information Protocol (RIP) request for all frame types and then waiting for a response. The frame type for which Windows 2000 received a response then becomes the default. If responses are received for multiple frame types, Windows 2000 sets the default frame types for which the responses were received in this order: Ethernet 802.2, Ethernet 802.3, Ethernet II, Sub-Network Access Protocol (SNAP).
  5. If you want to specify the frame type manually or add multiple frame types, select the Manual Frame Type Detection option, select Add, and then choose a frame type and enter the network number for that frame type.

Figure 6-11. The General tab of the NWLink IPX/SPX/NetBIOS-Compatible Transport dialog box.

Microsoft Windows 2000 Server Administrator's Companion
Microsoft Windows 2000 Server Administrators Companion
ISBN: 0735617856
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2003
Pages: 320

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