Understanding Windows Workgroups & Domains

Difference Between Workgroups and Domains

The difference between a workgroup and a domain network is the way of managing network resources. Computers in domains have a centralised database and the computers in Workgroups have a distributed database. Computers in the home are usually in Workgroup whereas computers in the workplace and corporate networks are normally 0n Domains.

Workgroups

1. Every computer has its own unique database called as SAM database
2. NetBIOS protocol is used for Name resolution.
3. There could be 10 to 15 computers in a Workgroup.
4. All computers must be on the same network or subnet.
5. Workgroup works in LAN environment.
6. All computers have client Operating system.

Domains

1. Domain shares a centralised database called as NTDS with all the computers in the network.
2. DNS is used for Name resolution.
3. There could be unlimited no. of computers and users in Domain.
4. Different computers are in different Sub networks.
5. Domain works in LAN and WAN environment.
6. Computers in Domain can have server as well as client operating system.
Advantages of having a Workgroup
1. It is commonly used for home and small business network.
2. IT is also called as peer to peer network.
3. Computers communicate directly with each other and share resources.
4. Each user can decide the resource that he wants to share with others in the network.
5. Less expensive and easy to setup for small networks.
6. No dedicated Administrator required.

Advantages of having a Domain

1. Domain provides user and group based security, centralised management of network resources and can be physically stored in one room or Span international borders.
2. Security is more as compared to workgroup.
3. A lot of Scalability
4. Lot of Extensibility
5. Single Sign On.
Steps to join a single client computer into a particular workgroup:
1. Go to ‘Start’ – ‘Computer’ – ‘Right click’ and select ‘Properties.’
2. Click ‘Change settings’ – ‘System properties’ window will be displayed.
3. Click on ‘Change’ button. ‘Computer name/Domain changes’ window will be displayed.
4. In the bottom click ‘Workgroup’ radio button. Enter the name of the workgroup where you want to join your computer.
5. Click’ Ok’. You will need to restart.
6. After the computer restarts your computer will be joined to the particular Workgroup.

Steps to join a single client computer into a Domain:

1. Go to ‘Start’ – ‘Computer’ – ‘Right click’ and select ‘Properties.’
2. Click ‘Change settings’ – ‘System properties’ window will be displayed.
3. Click on ‘Change’ button. ‘Computer name/Domain changes’ window will be displayed.
4. In the bottom click ‘Domain’ radio button. Enter the name of the domain where you want to join your computer.
5. This will ask you to provide the administrative credentials of the domain. Enter the credentials.
6. Click ‘Ok’. You will need to restart the computer.
7. After the computer restarts your computer will be joined to the particular Domain.