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Todd Klindt's home page > Todd Klindt's SharePoint Admin Blog > Posts > Installing SharePoint 2010 on a Domain Controller
May 21
Installing SharePoint 2010 on a Domain Controller

There's been some confusion about what happens when you install SharePoint 2010 on a Domain Controller. To further complicate things, the behavior in the release version of SharePoint 2010 is exactly the opposite of what it was in the beta. It's like they're messing with us!

To clear it up; if you install SharePoint 2010 on a Domain Controller, you get a Server Farm (also called Advanced) install. You do NOT get a Single Server (also known as Basic) install. Heck, you don't even get the option to install a Single Server install in the UI. If you want one, you have to script the install using a config.xml file.

Now, that's confusing to some folks, because the public beta was exactly the opposite. If you installed the SharePoint 2010 beta on a Domain Controller, you got a Basic install whether you wanted it or not. And of course you didn't. My only guess is that in the beta timeframe they knew they wanted to force our hands on the install type, but somewhere a 1 got flipped to a 0 and the wrong option was installed. That's fixed on RTM though.

So why do they care? Well, it comes down to SQL Express, I think. If you do a Basic Install you get SQL Express as part of the deal. To install SQL express on a Domain Controller in a supported fashion you need to tweak some things during install, which are detailed here. The appeal of a Basic Install, if there is one at all, is that there's nothing to configure. So which route would they go then, not bother the user for the extra info and install SQL Express in an unsupported fashion, or break the sacred vow of the Basic install and prompt for information? They took option three, don't install SQL Express at all. Now, let's be clear on what "supported" means. "Unsupported" does not mean "won't install on" or "you're a freakin' super genius if you figure out how to do this." It just means it's not the intended way for the software to run, and Microsoft hasn't tested it. You can install SQL Express on a Domain Controller without setting all those settings, as the Beta install showed us. It just hasn't been tested, and may break somewhere down the line.

That's the story. Not much to it. Just wanted to clear that up a little.

tk

Comments

sulman

Can we install sharepoint server 2010 on domain controller.

what issues can be arises ..???

plz reply me @ sulman.arshad@hotmail.com
 on 5/29/2011 5:29 AM

Re: sulman

I don't know what the official word from Microsoft is on this, but a Server Farm install of SharePoint 2010 will work on a domain controller. You cannot do a Standalone install on a DC, since SQL Express is not supported.

I would never, EVER install SharePoint 2010 on a DC in production. Never, ever.

tk
Todd O. KlindtNo presence information on 6/5/2011 8:49 PM

Why not?

Hi Todd,
What are the reasons for never, EVER installing SP2010 on a DC?  I'm am looking for ways to consolidate multiple servers (in a virtualized environment) that each exist as stand alone physical servers. 

I presently have (among other servers), SP2007, which I'll upgrade to SP2010, a terminal server that supports approx. 50 users, that I'll upgrade to RDS2008 and a DC that does file and print services. 

Do you have an opinion on combining the RDS with Sharepoint? 

Any comment on combining Ex2010 with Lync?

Thanks for any comments.
 on 6/6/2011 12:18 PM

Todd is correct.

You shouldn't install SP2010 on a DC for many reasons:
For example, SharePoint uses services accounts that are created and managed in different ways depending on if the server is a DC or a simple member server.
That little diference, makes that the SharePoint environment isn't the issolated it should be, and for example when you demote a DC with SP2010 in it, it won't work till you reconfigure the whole beast again. This is because those services accounts are created as local accounts in member servers but in a DC with SharePoint are created in the AD, so when you demote the server, SharePoint will try to use the local accounts wich doesn't exist.
Not to mention that also doesn't exist some registry entries, folders and permissions that are used through local privilegies.

Yes, a DC server with SharePoint can be demoted and you can make it work again without reinstalling (I did it successfully) but it's a hell I wouldn't recommend to anyone.

Cheers,
Akuma.
 on 6/20/2011 10:49 AM

Re: Todd is correct.

I'll approve most any comment that has the title "Todd is correct. :)

tk
Todd O. KlindtNo presence information on 6/20/2011 3:40 PM

What about a development environment?

Obviously I'm not going to install Sharepoint on a DC in production environment, but what about a development virtual machine?

I would like to generate a virtual server to make some developments over sharepoint server 2010. The application uses FBA and requires to connect to an active directory, and I don't want to add this virtual machine to any existing one and neither to run 2 virtual machines (DC and SPS). As far as I've seen, it is possible to have both on the same server but are there any other issue apart from having the service accounts on the AD instead of the local machine accounts?

Thanks for your feedback.
Manuel
 on 8/20/2014 5:30 AM

What about a development environment?

Obviously I'm not going to install Sharepoint on a DC in production environment, but what about a development virtual machine?

I would like to generate a virtual server to make some developments over sharepoint server 2010. The application uses FBA and requires to connect to an active directory, and I don't want to add this virtual machine to any existing one and neither to run 2 virtual machines (DC and SPS). As far as I've seen, it is possible to have both on the same server but are there any other issue apart from having the service accounts on the AD instead of the local machine accounts?

Thanks for your feedback.
Manuel
 on 8/20/2014 5:52 AM

How to move a Shapoint installed on DC to a member server?

I just started a company who got all wrong with a SP2010 installed on a DC and having so much performance issues. How do I make this correct without a downtime? I'd like to move SQL 2008 and SP app to two separate boxes.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
 on 8/2/2017 1:53 PM

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