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I'm setting up two VMs under VirtualBox - one acting as an Active Directory controller, and the other joined to the domain. Both are running Windows Server 2008.

I'm trying to get the network settings right so that both VMs can access the Internet (they need to obtain an IP address from the host's network), and so that Active Directory works as well.

Everything was going fine until I installed the AD role, then that server could no longer access the Internet. I left the IP address to obtain automatically and bypassed the warning that appears, so I was surprised this stopped working.

I've fiddled with different network adapter options in VirtualBox and read up about them but haven't had any success so far. (Networking isn't something I have a strong knowledge of.) Does anyone know what the steps are to get this working?

Update, more detail:

Here is a list of different network settings I've tried on the domain controller. For all of these the DNS server has been set to 127.0.0.1 followed by the DNS servers used by the host.

Using "VirtualBox Host-Only Ethernet Adapter":

  • Set to "Obtain IP address automatically" and picks up an address in the 192.168.56.x range
  • No Internet access and cannot ping other addresses on the host's network
  • Didn't test client accessing the domain controller

Using "Bridged Adapter":

  • Set to "Obtain IP address automatically" and picks up a Windows auto-configured IP address starting with 169
  • No Internet access and cannot ping other addresses on the host's network
  • Didn't test client accessing the domain controller

Using "NAT":

  • Set to "Obtain IP address automatically" and picks up a network configuration very similar to the host
  • Internet access works fine
  • Client cannot access the domain controller

Both VMs can talk to each other using "Internal networking" however obviously this means no Internet access.

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3 Answers 3

Start by verifying that your DNS and default gateway settings are correct on your 2 servers- in my experience the DNS configuration is usually the root of these types of issues.

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Is the domain controller that you are promoting the only DNS server in that Active Directory domain? If it is, you should have the DNS set manually to 127.0.0.1

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

I now have this working. The AD controller doesn't have Internet access but the client does which is the important thing. Here's the configuration...

VM server #1: Active Directory controller

  • Network adapter #1: "Internal Network" with IP address set manually

VM server #2: Active Directory client

  • Network adapter #1: "Internal Network" with IP address set manually on same subnet as VM #1
  • Network adapter #2: "NAT" with IP address set to automatic

Hope this helps someone. At some point I might come back to try and get the AD controller on the Internet as well.

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