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I just got to play around with Windows Small Business Server 2011 for the past couple weeks, and one feature I think is cool is that to join a domain, you just need to go to http://connect in your web browser, and fill in a username and password. I have always been used to manually joining a domain through Computer Properties->Computer Name and either using Network ID Wizard, or manually change the name and type the domain name in. Other than ease of use, does it really matter if it's joined with the website/download or with the manual method?

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

The computer object will not be put into the correct container in Active Directory. For example, you will be putting the computer in the Computers container instead of MyBusiness > Computers > SBSComputers container. The problem with this is that the computer and possibly users will not get the correct SBS Group Policies (drive maps, folder redirection, etc.) and other strange things can happen. If you end up not using the Connect wizard, you can go into Active Directory Users and Computers and move the computer object to the correct container. Don't create anymore work for yourself than you have to, use the SBS wizards.

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I just happend to join a Windows 8.1 Pro client to a SBS2011 Domain, using the regular Network ID Wizard. After the required reboot, I realized, that I maybe should have used the connect-feature.

In this case the client computer was put into the correct AD container ("MyBusiness").

One benefit of using the "connect"-feature is, that existing user profiles can automatically be converted to domain profiles... though sometimes this does not work - at least this happened to me, when joining some Windows XP machines to a SB2S008 domain. Also, windows 8 profiles are not converted when joining a SBS2011 domain (server with updaterollup 4).

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