-{ a hewer of maps }-

Searching Active Directory

This is from the I can't believe I didn't know that and whyhaven't I been using it for the last ten years!?? department.

Many times in the last decade I'veneeded to*search Active Directory*for a person's name, login name, what members belong to what group and so on. Each time the need has been pressing enough I've gone out and searched the 'net for solutions, and each time after a time come up with a solution. Said time might have been 10 mintues or 2 hours depending on what in particular I was trying to do.  The solutions I've found and used ranged from the easy to use AD-Explorer to roll your own python or batchfile scripts (that have taken further hours to develop to suit local circumstances).

Encountering the need again today, and realizing my local stash of recipes was much too scary or technical to hand off to our regular staff who would actually be using it, I embarked on the quest again. Lo and behold, every version of Windows from (at least) XP on up includes the built in Find Users, Contacts, and Groups. It's buried under 'My Network Neighbourhood > Common Tasks' which I'd given up on long ago as being a useless "my computer" place to visit (when I want to see the network it's far more common to want to see the workstations and servers near me and turned on than the last 30 or more places I've been to). Who knew? (obviously not me!)

Anyway, here's the meat of it and you can't put it anywhere you want, so it's actually convenient: Create a shortcut to rundll32.exe dsquery, OpenQueryWindow. And that's it, you're done.


Thank you Information Systems & Technology at University of Waterloo for illuminating me.

Long Live the Aurora Text Editor » « Retrieve members of AD group