Hope some one can help a network/server noob understand how domains work in AD.

I am in an organisation with 2 AD servers in 2 different countries, e.g. US and UK, and they set up the US and UK domains respectively. the accounts are set up such that all employees in both countries have a US\user and UK\user account.

What is the difference if a UK user logon with US\user from a local UK computer, versus RDP (remote desktop) into a US server with US\user?

Thanks for your help.

EDIT: I am not sure how to see if it is the "same network", but given they are different geographically, seems like they are on different LAN? I find that with both login methods , all UK and US domains are "searchable" from the "search active directory" function under "network" -- if that helps.

Apparently there are 2 reasons for having different accounts. (1) Some software have limited install license issue such that users currently need to RDP into the remote computer to use it (it's silly, I don't know why). (2) Some software only allow users on the domain from which it is installed on, users from other domains cannot connect to it.

  • is there any reason you have given the users accounts in both domains? Surely they only need one?
    – beakersoft
    Dec 22, 2010 at 14:27
  • Are both AD Servers on the same domain or are they seprate networks?
    – cpgascho
    Dec 22, 2010 at 14:33
  • @beaksoft and cpgascho. I edited my original post. Thanks for your responses.
    – Jake
    Dec 22, 2010 at 20:32

1 Answer 1


Sounds like both are linked; but the accounts in the two domains are completely separate (sounds like a very misguided setup). Not knowing anything else about your situation I really can't give any recommendations (merging the domains might be an option, but again, each situation is different).

  • Thanks Chris. When you say completely separate, are you saying that you suspect that each single AD server has both US and UK domains set up? So, RDP auth is done on the US AD server regardless of domain and local (UK) logon is done on the AD server likewise? Or could it be this thing about "forest" (that I do not understand yet)?
    – Jake
    Dec 22, 2010 at 22:59

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