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Too Many Domain Controllers?

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  • Too Many Domain Controllers?

    Is it possible to have too many domain controllers. Currently supporting a network of 500 PCs and 1000 users, 1 Exchange box, and 1 web server. Running Windows 2000 Native at this point, will be running Windows 2003 in the next few weeks.

    Right now, 3 domain controllers are humming along. We want to add 2 additional domain controllers, one in our datacenter and one in at our DR site (connected by fiber, roughly 1/4 mile away). The idea that too many domain controllers can lead to too much chattering was brought up and I can see that being an issue. I know we will definetly add the one at our DR site, but would it be OK to add the addtional DC in our datacenter? or would that create too much uneeded traffic.
    MCITP:SA, MCSA 2003, MCP, CCNA, A+, Net+, Security+

  • #2
    Re: Too Many Domain Controllers?

    Information is pretty short here. What is the link speed and current saturation of your network, between all the places where you will have domain controllers? What sort of applications are these 1000 users running? What's their profile of email use? Frequent short messages, infrequent large attachments or frequent large attachments? Do you have an email enterprise archiving product (like Enterprise KVault) running? How many file servers and what sort of file transfer traffic is occurring - from where to where? How much web traffic is there? In and Out?

    But - at best guess, on a 100Mbit desktop network supported by a 1Gbit server VLAN, one or two domain controllers won't even blip it. With a 10MBit desktop network and servers running off a 100MBit half-duplex FDDI ring (old OLD technology) and a 128k link between DC's (sites) it's going to struggle a bit with the extra.

    You're going to have to give us more to go on and a better idea (preferably a diagram) of your network topology.

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