I've been given the cumbersome task to totally redo the IT-infrastructure for a customer's office. They are currently running Windows XP all over, with one computer acting as a file server with no control over which users have access to which files, and so on. To top it off, this file server also functions as a workstation, which means it gets rebooted every time the user notices some sluggish behavior or experiences problems with flash games. To say the least, this isn't working for them.
Now - I've got a very slim budget, but I need to set up a new server, and I wish to run Windows Server 2008 on it. I also need the ability to access the network remotely via VPN. Would it be a good idea to install VMware ESXi 4.1 onto the new server, and then run Windows Server 2008 as well as a separate Debian install for openvpn on it? I don't like the Domain Controller for the future AD to also run a VPN-server, because of stability issues when something goes to hell with either of them. There will be no redundancy though. However, I'm not sure if there is something to gain by installing a VPN solution on the Windows Server itself, when it comes to accessing file shares on the network via VPN.
I don't know how to enable users logging in via the VPN to access the remote files, since they will be accessing the network from their own home computers (which is indeed a really bad idea, but this is what I've got to work with). They won't be logged in to the windows Domain, but rather their home workgroups. I need to be able to grant access to files in certain directories based on the logged in AD-user, but every computer won't necessarily be configured to log into the domain. I'm not sure how to explain this in a good way, but I'd be happy to clarify if somethings not clear.
Any help would be great, because I've got a feeling that I can't do this without introducing a bunch of costly new rules when it comes to their IT-solution. I'd rather leave that untouched and go on my merry way to the next assignment.