70-742 Additional Notes – On-Prem AD Integration with Azure

December 7, 2017 at 9:44 pm

Azure

Want to integrate your on-prem Active Directory with Azure? Azure AD Connect makes this simple. Azure AD Connect is the answer (for now!) The techniques for doing this have changed many times over the years – this document provides the options and comparisons for you:

AD to Azure Integration Options

This connectivity provides the following:

  • Users can use a single identity to access on-premises applications and cloud services such as Office 365
  • Single tool to provide an easy deployment experience for synchronization and sign-in
  • Provides the newest capabilities for your scenarios; Azure AD Connect replaces older versions of identity integration tools such as DirSync and Azure AD Sync; see the link above

Azure AD Connect consists of the following three components:

  • Synchronization – this component is responsible for creating users, groups, and other objects; it is also responsible for making sure identity information for your on-premises users and groups is matching the cloud
  • AD FS – federation is an optional part of Azure AD Connect and can be used to configure a hybrid environment using an on-premises AD FS infrastructure; this can be used by organizations to address complex deployments, such as domain join SSO, enforcement of AD sign-in policy, and smart card or 3rd party MFA
  • Health Monitoring – Azure AD Connect Health can provide robust monitoring and provide a central location in the Azure portal to view this activity

Before installing this feature, you need to go through these hardware and software requirements carefully in order to ensure success. Note that there is an Express Setup option and this is only going to work if you have met all of these prerequisites. Note also that AD Federation Services in your on-prem is not necessarily a requirement.

Installation Requirements

Finally, here is a link to the Express Settings step-by-step:

Express Settings 

What was on Fire at Microsoft Ignite 2017?

October 2, 2017 at 3:17 pm

Ignite

This conference was certainly short on big product announcements, but it was long on visions for the future involving super exciting emerging technologies. Below is a list of hot topics from Microsoft at the event!

  • The keynote set the tone by emphasizing mixed reality, artificial intelligence (AI), and quantum computing; all of these are impacting key Microsoft products including Microsoft 365, Dynamics 365, and Azure
    • Microsoft 365 refers to Office 365, Windows 10, and Enterprise Mobility + Security plus other Microsoft apps
    • Dynamics 365 refers to Microsoft’s cloud-based ERP and CRM enterprise system
    • Azure is Microsoft’s public cloud offering
  • Microsoft is pushing a new programming language aimed at quantum computing
  • Microsoft 365 F1
  • Microsoft 365 Education
  • Microsoft 365 Powered Devices
  • Teams (replacing Skype for Business)
  • Bing with AI
  • LinkedIn Profile Cards in more and more MS apps
  • Windows AutoPilot – a collection of technologies used to set up and pre-configure new devices, getting them ready for productive use; also, you can use Windows AutoPilot to reset, repurpose and recover devices
  • ATP – Windows Defender Advanced Threat Protection
  • Azure
    • Stack Shipping
    • Hybrid Benefit
    • Cost Management
    • Security Center
    • Machine Learning
    • Cosmos DB
    • Cognitive Services
  • SQL Server
    • Linux and Docker support
    • DB Migration Service (to Azure)
    • SQL Data Warehouse

Microsoft

70-742 Additional Notes – AD FS, WAP, and Preauthentication

September 18, 2017 at 11:07 am

When you are configuring AD FS and WAP you have two preauthentication methods and various types of preauthentication available. Here is a recap of when you would use the various methods and types:

  • AD FS preauthentication method
    • Type – Web and MSOFBA
      • WebApplication
      • Rich Office Client
      • SharePoint
      • Office Server
      • Custom WebApp
    • Type – HTTP Basic
      • Rich Client without HTTP Redirection
      • Exchange ActiveSync
      • Remote Desktop Gateway
    • Type – OAuth2
      • Application using OAuth2
      • Windows Store Apps
      • Custom Application
  • Pass-Through preauthentication method 
    • No authentication
    • Forward authentication
    • Anonymous website
    • Legacy application
    • Public website

70-742 Additional Notes – Restoring the Default GPOs

September 17, 2017 at 10:10 pm

70-742

You may find yourself in a situation where you need to restore the default domain policy or the default domain controllers policy to their original configurations. Thankfully – there is a tool for this – it is the aptly named dcgpofix.exe command line tool. This tools offers the following options:

  • /ignoreschema- this permits the command to run regardless of the AD scheme version in use
  • /target – permits you to specify exactly what object you want to restore
  • /? – permits the display of help on the command

70-742 Additional Notes – Federation Services Cmdlets for PowerShell

September 16, 2017 at 11:50 am

Be sure to run through these useful cmdlets for the management of Active Directory Federation Services. Remember, don’t go crazy with memorization here on cmdlets. Just remember the verb-noun syntax and review the list to see what is possible. Once again – don’t miss the READ MORE button in the blog post to see the complete list:

  • Add-​Adfs​Attribute​Store
    Adds an attribute store to the Federation Service.
  • Add-​Adfs​Certificate
    Adds a new certificate to AD FS for signing, decrypting, or securing communications.
  • Add-​Adfs​Claim​Description
    Adds a claim description to the Federation Service.
  • Add-​Adfs​Claims​Provider​Trust
    Adds a new claims provider trust to the Federation Service.
  • Add-​Adfs​Claims​Provider​Trusts​Group
    Creates a claims provider trust group based on metadata that contains multiple entities.
  • Add-​Adfs​Client
    Registers an OAuth 2.0 client with AD FS.
  • Add-​Adfs​Device​Registration​Upn​Suffix
    Adds a custom UPN suffix.
  • Add-​Adfs​Farm​Node
    Adds this computer to an existing federation server farm.
  • Add-​Adfs​Local​Claims​Provider​Trust
    Creates a local claims provider trust.
  • Add-​Adfs​Native​Client​Application
    Adds a native client application role to an application in AD FS.
  • Add-​Adfs​Non​Claims​Aware​Relying​Party​Trust
    Adds a relying party trust that represents a non-claims-aware web application or service to the Federation Service.
  • Add-​Adfs​Relying​Party​Trust
    Adds a new relying party trust to the Federation Service.
  • Add-​Adfs​Relying​Party​Trusts​Group
    Creates a relying party trusts group.
  • Add-​Adfs​Scope​Description
    Adds a scope description in AD FS.
  • Add-​Adfs​Server​Application
    Adds a server application role to an application in AD FS.
  • Add-​Adfs​Trusted​Federation​Partner
    Adds configuration settings for trusted federation partners in AD FS.
  • Add-​Adfs​Web​Api​Application
    Adds a Web API application role to an application in AD FS.
  • Add-​Adfs​Web​Application​Proxy​Relying​Party​Trust
    Adds a relying party trust for the Web Application Proxy.
  • Disable-​Adfs​Application​Group
    Disables an application group.

70-742 Additional Notes – Active Directory Rights Management Services (AD RMS)

September 14, 2017 at 9:32 pm

Active Directory Rights Management Services rights can be assigned to users in forests that have a federated trust in place via Active Directory Federation Services . This enables organizations to share rights-protected content without establishing another trust or building a separate Active Directory Rights Management Services infrastructure.

Active Directory Federation Services (AD FS) is a standards-based service that enables federation of identity by implementing claims-based authentication across forests. Claims-based authentication is the process of authenticating a user, based on a set of claims contained in a trusted token. The token is typically issued and signed by a trusted entity.

With AD FS, identity federation is established between two organizations by establishing trust between two security realms . An AD FS server on one side of the trust (ADFS-ACCOUNT) authenticates the user through Active Directory Domain Services and issues a token containing a series of claims about the user, including her identity. On the other side, an AD FS server (ADFS-RESOURCE) validates the token and issues a separate token that the local servers accept, enabling the user to access a requested resource. This process enables an organization to provide controlled access, to its resources or services, to a user that belongs to another security realm. Users do not have to directly authenticate to the federated environment and the organizations do not have to share user identities or passwords.

In order to benefit from identity federation, a service must accept federated identities, and AD RMS is one such service. In particular, AD RMS is designed to accept requests for licenses, from remote users through a single sign-on agent or Web single sign-on, and redirect the requests to the local federation server (ADFS-RESOURCE). This server requires the user to authenticate to ADFS-ACCOUNT, which authenticates the user via Active Directory and issues the corresponding security token. This token is presented to the single sign-on agent, which validates the token and provides the identity to the AD RMS server. Finally, the AD RMS server issues the requested licenses.

AD FS provides a very efficient way to deliver access to protected content to users in remote, independent organizations, including organizations that have not deployed AD RMS. It also uses infrastructure that can be used for other federation purposes, such as providing access to extranet sites and to SharePoint Server based sites.

Trusted User Domains (TUDs) allow you to configure an AD RMS cluster to manage requests for CLCs for users that have been issued RACs from a different AD RMS cluster. For example, if an organization has two separate Active Directory forests and each forest has its own AD RMS deployment, you’d configure Trusted User Domains so that clients from one forest are able to issue CLCs to clients with RACs issued from the other forest. TUDs can be one-way or bi-directional. When configuring TUDs, you must export the TUD from the partner before importing the TUD locally.

Trusted Publishing Domains (TPDs) allow the AD RMS cluster in one forest to issue end-user licenses to content published with licenses issued from an AD RMS cluster in another forest. You must export the TPD file and have it imported by the partner AD RMS cluster before the AD RMS cluster in the partner forest can issue end-user licenses to local AD RMS clients.

70-742 Additional Notes – Default Windows Server Security Groups

September 13, 2017 at 10:02 pm

GPOs

It is super important to be familiar with the default security groups of Active Directory and their purpose. Here is a handy review for you! While most I am sure you are familiar with – some might be a surprise a perhaps you have never needed them in your Enterprise. The exam of course does not care! Be sure to locate the READ MORE link as this list DOES NOT end after Domain Users. 🙂

  • Access Control Assistance Operators – Members of this group can remotely query authorization attributes and permissions for resources on the computer.
  • Account Operators – The Account Operators group grants limited account creation privileges to a user. Members of this group can create and modify most types of accounts, including those of users, local groups, and global groups, and members can log in locally to domain controllers.
  • Administrators – Members of the Administrators group have complete and unrestricted access to the computer, or if the computer is promoted to a domain controller, members have unrestricted access to the domain.
  • Allowed RODC Password Replication Group – The purpose of this security group is to manage a RODC password replication policy. This group has no members by default, and it results in the condition that new Read-only domain controllers do not cache user credentials. The Denied RODC Password Replication Group group contains a variety of high-privilege accounts and security groups. The Denied RODC Password Replication group supersedes the Allowed RODC Password Replication group.
  • Backup Operators – Members of the Backup Operators group can back up and restore all files on a computer, regardless of the permissions that protect those files. Backup Operators also can log on to and shut down the computer. This group cannot be renamed, deleted, or moved. By default, this built-in group has no members, and it can perform backup and restore operations on domain controllers. Its membership can be modified by the following groups: default service Administrators, Domain Admins in the domain, or Enterprise Admins. It cannot modify the membership of any administrative groups. While members of this group cannot change server settings or modify the configuration of the directory, they do have the permissions needed to replace files (including operating system files) on domain controllers. Because of this, members of this group are considered service administrators.
  • Certificate Service DCOM Access – Members of this group are allowed to connect to certification authorities in the enterprise.
  • Cert Publishers – Members of the Cert Publishers group are authorized to publish certificates for User objects in Active Directory.
  • Cloneable Domain Controllers – Members of the Cloneable Domain Controllers group that are domain controllers may be cloned. In Windows Server 2012 R2 and Windows Server 2012, you can deploy domain controllers by copying an existing virtual domain controller. In a virtual environment, you no longer have to repeatedly deploy a server image that is prepared by using sysprep.exe, promote the server to a domain controller, and then complete additional configuration requirements for deploying each domain controller (including adding the virtual domain controller to this security group).
  • Cryptographic Operators – Members of this group are authorized to perform cryptographic operations. This security group was added in Windows Vista Service Pack 1 (SP1) to configure Windows Firewall for IPsec in Common Criteria mode.
  • Denied RODC Password Replication Group – Members of the Denied RODC Password Replication group cannot have their passwords replicated to any Read-only domain controller.
  • Distributed COM Users – Members of the Distributed COM Users group are allowed to launch, activate, and use Distributed COM objects on the computer. Microsoft Component Object Model (COM) is a platform-independent, distributed, object-oriented system for creating binary software components that can interact. Distributed Component Object Model (DCOM) allows applications to be distributed across locations that make the most sense to you and to the application. This group appears as a SID until the domain controller is made the primary domain controller and it holds the operations master role (also known as flexible single master operations or FSMO).
  • DnsUpdateProxy – Members of the DnsUpdateProxy group are DNS clients. They are permitted to perform dynamic updates on behalf of other clients (such as DHCP servers). A DNS server can develop stale resource records when a DHCP server is configured to dynamically register host (A) and pointer (PTR) resource records on behalf of DHCP clients by using dynamic update. Adding clients to this security group mitigates this scenario.However, to protect against unsecured records or to permit members of the DnsUpdateProxy group to register records in zones that allow only secured dynamic updates, you must create a dedicated user account and configure DHCP servers to perform DNS dynamic updates by using the credentials of this account (user name, password, and domain). Multiple DHCP servers can use the credentials of one dedicated user account.
  • DnsAdmins – Members of DNSAdmins group have access to network DNS information. The default permissions are as follows: Allow: Read, Write, Create All Child objects, Delete Child objects, Special Permissions.
  • Domain Admins – Members of the Domain Admins security group are authorized to administer the domain. By default, the Domain Admins group is a member of the Administrators group on all computers that have joined a domain, including the domain controllers. The Domain Admins group is the default owner of any object that is created in Active Directory for the domain by any member of the group. If members of the group create other objects, such as files, the default owner is the Administrators group. The Domain Admins group controls access to all domain controllers in a domain, and it can modify the membership of all administrative accounts in the domain. Membership can be modified by members of the service administrator groups in its domain (Administrators and Domain Admins), and by members of the Enterprise Admins group. This is considered a service administrator account because its members have full access to the domain controllers in a domain.
  • Domain Computers – This group can include all computers and servers that have joined the domain, excluding domain controllers. By default, any computer account that is created automatically becomes a member of this group.
  • Domain Controllers – The Domain Controllers group can include all domain controllers in the domain. New domain controllers are automatically added to this group.
  • Domain Guests – The Domain Guests group includes the domain’s built-in Guest account. When members of this group sign in as local guests on a domain-joined computer, a domain profile is created on the local computer.
  • Domain Users – The Domain Users group includes all user accounts in a domain. When you create a user account in a domain, it is automatically added to this group. By default, any user account that is created in the domain automatically becomes a member of this group. This group can be used to represent all users in the domain. For example, if you want all domain users to have access to a printer, you can assign permissions for the printer to this group (or add the Domain Users group to a local group on the print server that has permissions for the printer).

70-742 Additional Notes – Item-Level Targeting with Group Policy Objects (GPO)

September 1, 2017 at 4:13 pm

GPO

Item-level targeting is a feature of Group Policy that allows preference settings to be applied to individual users and/or computers within the scope of the Group Policy Object (GPO) that contains the preferences. Policy settings can also be filtered, but there are several important differences between item-level targeting of preference settings and the filters that can be used with policy settings:

  • Policy settings within a GPO can only be filtered on an all-or-nothing basis: either the entire GPO will apply to a target or it won’t. Item-level targeting allows individual preference settings within a GPO to be applied or not, based on specified criteria. Different preference settings can be applied to different groups of targets.
  • Policy settings are filtered using either security filters or WMI filters. Security filters are static and not very granular. WMI filters are dynamic and can be very granular, but the WMI Query Language in which they are written is complex and has a steep learning curve. Item-level targeting provides a great deal of granularity and an intuitive user interface for constructing filters.
  • Item-level targeting allows an administrator to specify a list of conditions that must be met in order for a preference setting to be applied to a user or computer object. The conditions in the list are connected by Boolean AND or OR operators. When the list is evaluated, if the result is true, the setting is applied; if the result is false, it isn’t.

A wide variety of criteria are available for targeting settings to users and computers, including the following:

  • Battery Present Targeting
  • Computer Name Targeting
  • CPU Speed Targeting
  • Date Match Targeting
  • Disk Space Targeting
  • Domain Targeting
  • Environment Variable Targeting
  • File Match Targeting
  • IP Address Range Targeting
  • Language Targeting
  • LDAP Query Targeting
  • MAC Address Range Targeting
  • MSI Query Targeting
  • Network Connection Targeting
  • Operating System Targeting
  • Organizational Unit Targeting
  • PCMCIA Present Targeting
  • Portable Computer Targeting
  • Processing Mode Targeting
  • RAM Targeting
  • Registry Match Targeting
  • Security Group Targeting
  • Site Targeting
  • Terminal Session Targeting
  • Time Range Targeting
  • User Targeting
  • WMI Query Targeting