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As a noob, I have some questions. I’m currently running a virtual instance of Windows Server 2012 for my own education. I’ve gathered that setting up Windows DHCP and DNS as services within an Active Directory Domain Controller makes good sense, in that other options can be problematic outside of the Windows environment.

Here’s the catch; the gateway router is a basic home router/modem and it’s simple to turn off DHCP on that router, however, there are other users using the router’s DHCP service through a wireless connection. I assume those users will then be unable to receive their DHCP leases once the service is deactivated. But, those users won’t ever be part of the domain. Is there a solution to this that I can employ?

Joeqwerty on Server Fault said clients connected to the router, where DHCP had been disabled, could still receive leases from the Windows Server without being part of the domain. Any furtherance?

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    Your question would be much better received if you edit it to 1/ remove redundant text (like, for example "0 down vote favorite"), 2/ format it using paragraphs so it is readable, 3/ Don't include phrases like "Thank you for your time Rob" as they are not necessary. – DavidPostill Feb 6 '18 at 21:34
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I assume those users will then be unable to receive their DHCP leases once the service is deactivated. But, those users won’t ever be part of the domain.

DHCP operates on OSI Layer 2 and has no special relationship with an Active Directory domain or its servers. As long as your wireless clients have layer 2 connectivity to the same network where your DHCP server will run, they'll be able to get leases from it.

It's common for AD Domain Controllers (DCs) to offer DHCP services on the network, but it's by no means required.

It doesn't matter if your router or DC host DHCP, even if you have a mix of domain and non-domain clients. However, what does matter is the DNS settings delivered by your DHCP server.

Non-domain clients need a DNS server that can resolve Internet host names. In addition to this domain-joined clients need a DNS server that can resolve domain-specific DNS lookups. Domain-joined machines use DNS to locate services offered by the domain, such as authentication, time synchronization, etc.

In a typical configuration, your DC also acts as a "Active Directory integrated" DNS server. This means it can resolve the domain-specific queries needed by domain members. If this DNS server is configured with root hints or a DNS Forwarder, it can also resolve hostnames on the public Internet.

Now, if you choose to have your DC act as your DHCP server, it would point all DHCP clients to the DC's DNS server. And everything would work. Domain clients would be able to resolve AD-specific queries, and domain and non-domain clients could resolve Internet hosts too.

If instead you want your router to be the DHCP server, you would want to configure it to point DNS to your DC's DNS server. And everything would also work just fine.

Technically you could use separate DNS servers for domain and non-domain clients. But unless you're doing that by configuring settings manually on clients, that's a lot of unnecessary trouble.

Note: This answer assumes your DC is on the same IP subnetwork as the rest of your devices and that you only have one such subnetwork.

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