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Is it possible to setup one single machine with Windows 7 x64 OS and somehow make it work as if it's part of a certain domain? So domain controller would be simulated in some way? I would like to avoid VMs and make it actually work on one machine with non server OS.

Is there even a simpler way of doing it?
Maybe some third-party software that can be installed on a non-server OS?

Why: I have to setup development environment for Sharepoint 2010 and it will make my life much easier if my machine would be part of a domain.

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Downvote? It's just a question about something someone doens't know. That's why is for, isn't it? – Robert Koritnik May 20 '10 at 13:23
Just by saying you want it to work with a non-server OS, effectively ends what you are trying to accomplish. – DanBig May 20 '10 at 13:27
@Bart Silverstrim: It is. That something is single machine with both on them ;) – Robert Koritnik May 20 '10 at 14:34
up vote 2 down vote accepted

Short answer: It can't be done the way you want.

Longer answer: It can't be done the way you want because you can't simulate a domain. You either have one or you don't and you can't do that on a Windows workstation OS. The nearest you'll get without a Windows DC is to use Samba. Of course you can't do that either, because you don't want a VM or another machine.

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Has Samba improved Active Directory domain support? Last I looked at it Samba was primarily used to simulate older style Windows domains, not Active Directory, and AD support was beta at best and lacking some features. – Bart Silverstrim May 20 '10 at 13:23
I don't know but the point is moot as it doesn't fit the specified criteria anyway. I must admit I haven't tried Samba for at least 5 or 6 years. – John Gardeniers May 20 '10 at 13:46

Without a VM on another machine or turning your machine into a Windows Server domain controller, not really, no. Domains aren't meant for testing or simulating this way.

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Maybe not testing, but development definitely. Which is a kind of test anyway. ;) – Robert Koritnik May 20 '10 at 13:24

You need to setup a virtual machine acting as a domain controller on your box. That's the only way as far as i know.

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It would be great if I could run a thin VM before user logs in, so it would be possible to log into domain. – Robert Koritnik May 20 '10 at 13:25
You can use VmWare Server. – Maxwell May 20 '10 at 14:34

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