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Overview of User Accounts

The management of user accounts is one of the primary responsibilities of system administrators. User accounts are important because they are a fundamental unit of security and audit policies. In past versions of Windows, it was uncommon for anyone but administrators to require the ability to list user accounts. Accordingly, there was little identifying information to maintain other than Login Name, Full Name, and Description.

In Windows 2000, the strategic importance of user account maintenance has increased. Active Directory now represents not just a list of accounts, but also a database and referral point for many services that require the data to be up-to-date. The Active Directory is exposed to users often—especially in collaborative activities such as video conferencing and electronic mail. As a result, more fields have been created to help associate directory objects with real people and resources.


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