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Am I the only person who feels this way? Active Directory is a staple in business networks and it clearly provides some important services like single sign on and DNS integration and directory services, and so on. So I can see why it is used widely. I'm just wondering, with all of the terminology and objects in the model, Forests, Trees, One-way trusts, Federations, AD Replication, Bridgeheads, Transports, et al, are they all necessary to describe an enterprise network and its hosts? I feel like a lot of the terminology involved is totally specific to AD and doesn't really have a parallel in the open source or *nix world. Is Active Directory an unnecessarily complex product, is it a little bit more complex than it needs to be, or do I just not understand what it is used for? Forgive me if this is a bad question but whenever I look at articles like this I just get this deflated feeling that this should not be so complicated. Am I totally out of line?

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closed as not constructive by Shane Madden, Ward, MDMarra, Zypher Oct 18 '11 at 17:26

As it currently stands, this question is not a good fit for our Q&A format. We expect answers to be supported by facts, references, or expertise, but this question will likely solicit debate, arguments, polling, or extended discussion. If you feel that this question can be improved and possibly reopened, visit the help center for guidance.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

This will likely be closed since it's not a question. – Ward Oct 18 '11 at 17:26
This is completely off topic. – MDMarra Oct 18 '11 at 17:27
For the same reason the world economy is so big and confusing. Because it is what it is. Note that economics is not confusing to an economist, though. – Terry Gardner Oct 19 '11 at 9:03
up vote 4 down vote accepted

It's no more confusing than it has to be. If you have a single site with a single domain, you don't need to worry about bridgeheads, forests, trees, trusts, transports. If you have multiple sites, multiple domains, then you need the features that those terms refer to. It's certainly no more complex than similar products like eDirectory (Netware's NDS), which has its own terminology

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