Active Directory, which is covered in more detail in Chapter 8, is an enterprise directory service that is highly scalable and fully integrated with Exchange at the system level. Exchange takes full advantage of the Windows Server 2003 Active Directory; with but a single point of administration, it enables users to control all messaging services seamlessly. All directory information, including users, mailboxes, servers, sites, and recipients, is stored in Active Directory. Administrators benefit from the unified administration, experience no user-interface changes, and require no retraining after switching to Active Directory. Integration features of Exchange Server and Active Directory include the following:
♦ Unified administration of Exchange Server and Windows Server 2003 enables an administrator to manage all user data in one place using one set of tools.
♦ Security groups in Windows Server 2003 can be automatically used as Exchange distribution lists, removing the need to create a parallel set of distribution lists for each department or group.
♦ Active Directory's schema extensibility enables the management of distributed information and easily configurable Exchange user and server information.
♦ Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) is a native access protocol for directory information.
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