Can you say 'MMC?' That means manageability in Windows 2000

By Jeff Symoens, ITworld.com |  Operating Systems

Welcome to the debut of ITworld.com, and thanks for stopping to check out my column. My charter is to discuss Windows 2000 features, issues, tools, and strategies as they pertain to server-based platforms (i.e., Windows 2000 Server and Windows 2000 Advanced Server). Thus, I will often highlight a feature and describe how to realize its potential. At times I may take a broad topic and spread discussion of it over several columns in order to provide more in-depth technical discussion on that particular topic. But the key thing to remember is that this column is about two things -- Windows 2000 and servers. I may occasionally get into Windows 2000 Professional issues, but generally only when they relate to issues of enterprise administration or to ways in which the product relates to Windows 2000 Server features, problems, or issues. With those prefatory remarks out of the way let's dig in.

If you haven't been privy to the Windows 2000 beta code or you were just too busy to install any of the betas or release candidates that you did receive, then you might be a little surprised when you actually do attempt to install the product for the first time. While the lengthy install might catch you off guard, the chief obstacle you'll likely encounter will be the difficulty in instantly mapping Windows 2000 management tools to their Windows NT 4.0 counterparts.

There are some real differences between Windows NT 4.0 and Windows 2000, particularly in regards to where Microsoft has decided to place management tools. Thus, in my first few columns I will help you find the Windows 2000 administrative equivalents to the tools that you may be used to from Windows NT Server 4.0. These initial columns will serve as overviews, but I will further discuss some of these tools in future installments.

Management is a snap-in

This week, I'll give you a general description of the Microsoft Management Console (MMC), the basis for most of the administrative tools in Windows 2000. I'll also introduce the Computer Management console, and outline the tools that provide functionality equivalent to Windows NT 4.0's User Manager for Domains utility.

Administration in Windows 2000 can be best described in three words: Microsoft Management Console. MMC (formerly code-named Slate) actually shipped with various Windows NT 4.0 add-ons, such as the Windows NT 4.0 Option Pack. MMC is a generic and extensible administration console that hosts application-independent ActiveX controls as administrative snap-ins. MMC has been enhanced for Windows 2000, but its basic structure -- an administration console based on snap-ins -- has not changed.

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