This document uses the following terms:
Active Directory: A general-purpose network directory service. Active Directory also refers to the Windows implementation of a directory service. Active Directory stores information about a variety of objects in the network. Importantly, user accounts, computer accounts, groups, and all related credential information used by the Windows implementation of Kerberos are stored in Active Directory. Active Directory is either deployed as Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS) or Active Directory Lightweight Directory Services (AD LDS). [MS-ADTS] describes both forms. For more information, see [MS-AUTHSOD] section 18.104.22.168.2, Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) versions 2 and 3, Kerberos, and DNS.
ASCII: The American Standard Code for Information Interchange (ASCII) is an 8-bit character-encoding scheme based on the English alphabet. ASCII codes represent text in computers, communications equipment, and other devices that work with text. ASCII refers to a single 8-bit ASCII character or an array of 8-bit ASCII characters with the high bit of each character set to zero.
backup browser server: A browser server that was selected by the local master browser server on that subnet to be available to share the processing load that is required to serve browser clients. Backup browser servers keep copies of the information that is maintained by the local master browser server by periodically querying that server.
backup domain controller (BDC): A domain controller (DC) that receives a copy of the domain directory database from the primary domain controller (PDC). This copy is synchronized periodically and automatically with the primary domain controller (PDC). BDCs also authenticate user logons and can be promoted to function as the PDC. There is only one PDC or PDC emulator in a domain, and the rest are backup domain controllers.
browser: See browser server.
browser client: A computer on the network that queries or sends information to a browser server. There are three types of browser clients: workstations, nonbrowser servers, and browser servers. In the context of browsing, nonbrowser servers supply information about themselves to browser servers, and workstations query browser servers for information. Browser servers can behave as nonbrowser servers and as workstations.
browser server: An entity that maintains or could be elected to maintain information about other servers and domains.
domain: A set of users and computers sharing a common namespace and management infrastructure. At least one computer member of the set must act as a domain controller (DC) and host a member list that identifies all members of the domain, as well as optionally hosting the Active Directory service. The domain controller provides authentication (2) of members, creating a unit of trust for its members. Each domain has an identifier that is shared among its members. For more information, see [MS-AUTHSOD] section 22.214.171.124 and [MS-ADTS].
domain controller (DC): The service, running on a server, that implements Active Directory, or the server hosting this service. The service hosts the data store for objects and interoperates with other DCs to ensure that a local change to an object replicates correctly across all DCs. When Active Directory is operating as Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS), the DC contains full NC replicas of the configuration naming context (config NC), schema naming context (schema NC), and one of the domain NCs in its forest. If the AD DS DC is a global catalog server (GC server), it contains partial NC replicas of the remaining domain NCs in its forest. For more information, see [MS-AUTHSOD] section 126.96.36.199.2 and [MS-ADTS]. When Active Directory is operating as Active Directory Lightweight Directory Services (AD LDS), several AD LDS DCs can run on one server. When Active Directory is operating as AD DS, only one AD DS DC can run on one server. However, several AD LDS DCs can coexist with one AD DS DC on one server. The AD LDS DC contains full NC replicas of the config NC and the schema NC in its forest. The domain controller is the server side of Authentication Protocol Domain Support [MS-APDS].
domain master browser server: A master browser server that is responsible for combining information for an entire domain, across all subnets. A domain master browser server is responsible for keeping multiple subnets in synchronization by periodically querying local master browser servers for information concerning user accounts, security, and available resources such as printers.
election criteria: The collective information in a browser RequestElection packet that is used to determine the winner of an election.
group name: A 16-byte, formatted NetBIOS computer name, which can have multiple IP addresses assigned to it; that is, multiple NetBIOS nodes (processor locations) can use this name to register for services, as specified in [RFC1001] and [RFC1002].
local master browser: The browser on a given subnet that was elected to maintain the master copy of information related to a given domain. That is, different domains have different local master browsers on the same subnet.
local master browser server: A server that is elected master browser server on a particular subnet across a domain.
machine group: A generic reference to a domain or a workgroup, of which a specified machine is a member. A computer implementing the CIFS Browser Protocol must be a member of either a workgroup or a domain.
master browser server: A server that is responsible for maintaining a master list of available resources on a subnet and for making the list available to backup browser servers. Each subnet requires a master browser server. The master browser server for a particular domain is called the domain master browser server.
preferred master browser server: A machine that functions as a typical backup browser server except that it forces a browser election when it is started. Preferred master browser servers are given an advantage in elections. By configuring one or more machines as preferred master browser servers, a network administrator can actually choose particular machines for this role.
primary domain controller (PDC): A domain controller (DC) designated to track changes made to the accounts of all computers on a domain. It is the only computer to receive these changes directly, and is specialized so as to ensure consistency and to eliminate the potential for conflicting entries in the Active Directory database. A domain has only one PDC.
subnet: A logical division of a network. Subnets provide a multilevel hierarchical routing structure for the Internet. On TCP/IP networks, subnets are defined as all devices whose IP addresses have the same prefix. Subnets are useful for both security and performance reasons. In general, broadcast messages are scoped to within a single subnet. For more information about subnets, see [RFC1812].
unique name: A 16-byte, formatted NetBIOS computer name that can have only one IP address assigned to it; that is, only a single NetBIOS node (or processing location) can use this name to register for services, as specified in [RFC1001] and [RFC1002].
MAY, SHOULD, MUST, SHOULD NOT, MUST NOT: These terms (in all caps) are used as defined in [RFC2119]. All statements of optional behavior use either MAY, SHOULD, or SHOULD NOT.