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Windows NT Jargon Buster

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When researching information about Windows NT, you may come across phrases or words that you may not be familiar with.To help you better understand the information you find, the following list contains some terms, definitions, and explanations that you may find useful.

  • Registry-A database that forms part of the operating system on Windows NT computers and contains information about the hardware and software configuration of the system.

  • Domain-Windows NT computers are grouped together into units known as domains. Each domain has a central computer that contains the user and computer accounts for that domain.

  • Active Directory-A system implemented by Microsoft in the Windows 2000 product that allows information about users, computers, and other objects to be stored in a database, which can be distributed among the systems of the network.

  • Primary Domain Controller (PDC)-A computer that acts as the central point of reference for a domain.

  • Backup Domain Controller (BDC)-A computer that holds a copy of the user information stored on the PDC.

The popularity of Windows NT has led to a huge range of books written about the operating system. As well as books that deal with the subject in general, there are a great many that deal with specific topics, such as security or internetworking. The following sections contain a small collection of the available titles.

Beginner Book Titles

Davis, Peter T, Barry D. Lewis. Teach Yourself Microsoft Windows NT Server 4 in 21 Days. Sams, 1999. ISBN 0672315556.

Tittel, Ed, Mary Madden, and Earl Follis. Windows NT Networking For Dummies. IDG Books Worldwide, 1996. ISBN 0764500155.

Donald, Lisa, Patrick Ciccarelli (contributor), and Dan Newland (contributor). MCSE 2000 JumpStart: Computer and Network Basics. Sybex, 2000. ISBN 0782127495.

Advanced Books

Wise, Eric R. Performance Tuning Microsoft Networks. Intelligentsia Publishing, 1999. ISBN 0966833414.

Minasi, Mark, Christa Anderson, Brian M. Smith, and Doug Toombs. Mastering Windows 2000 Server (Mastering). Sybex, 2000. ISBN 0782127746.

Edmead, MarkT, and Paul Hinsberg. Windows NT Performance Monitoring, Benchmarking, and Tuning (New Riders Professional Series). New Riders Publishing, 1998. ISBN 1562059424.

Nielsen, Morten Strunge. Windows 2000 Server Architecture and Planning, Second Edition. The Coriolis Group, 2000. ISBN 1576106071.

Reference Books
  • Pearce, Eric, Robert J. Denn (editor), and Beverly Murray Scherf. Windows NT in a Nutshell: A Desktop Quick Reference for System Administrators (Nutshell Handbooks). O'Reilly & Associates, 1997. ISBN 1565922514.

  • Hunt, Craig, Robert Bruce Thompson, and Robert Denn (editor). Windows NT TCP/IP Network Administration. O'Reilly & Associates, 1998. ISBN 1565923774.

  • Williams, Robert, Mark Walla, and G. Robert Williams. Tfie Ultimate Windows 2000 System Administrator's Guide. Addison-Wesley, 2000. ISBN 0201615800.

  • Wallace, Nathan. Windows 2000 Registry Little Black Book The Definitive Resource on the NT Registry. The Coriolis Group, 2000. ISBN 157610348X.
Online Information and Resources

The Internet provides a wide range of information on Windows NT/2000. There are a number of newsgroups from which you can gain valuable information as well as a variety of magazines. The following sections contain a few resources to get you started.


Newsgroups are Internet based message boards that allow users to post messages or reply to messages that other people post. Newsgroups are descriptively named to give an idea of what the newsgroup is about. For instance, comp.os.netware, is the NetWare discussion group under the computer operating system section. There are thousands of newsgroups on almost every possible subject. Newsgroups can be a valuable resource for anyone involved in the IT industry. Almost every part of the IT industry has related newsgroups.

Newsgroups can be accessed via a newsreader such as those included with Microsoft Outlook or Netscape Communicator, or via a Web interface. Accessing newsgroups through a Web interface on a site such as Usenet is the easiest way to get started.

Here are some of the Microsoft Windows NT related newsgroups:





Magazines and Journals

As you might expect, there are a great number of magazines and journals devoted to Windows NT. The trick is finding the one that best suits your needs and interests. Good magazines should be able to offer links, troubleshooting information, upcoming products and patches, and informative articles. There are many that fulfill this requirement:
  • Windows 2000 Magazine ( magazine offers information on various aspects ofWindows 2000, including networking. The articles included are comprehensive and can help administrators of all levels improve or troubleshoot their networks. The site is not free; subscription for this magazine is 14 issues (1 year)-US $49.95.

  • Ent Online ( site offers current headlines announcing industry highlights and provides up-to-date information on new products and features. The site offers a free subscription and a chance to subscribe to its twice a week newsletter, Newsline.

  • Element KJournals ( magazine features articles, tips, and the very latest in the world of Windows NT. The articles are specific "how to" articles, giving detailed instructions, which makes them a very valuable resource. Access to these journals are not free; currently they are listed at $89 for 12 issues. Pay-per-view access for viewing articles is also offered.

  • ( magazine offers articles, tips and tricks, reviews, and more. Log on and subscribe to its free newsletter.
Web Pages

Good network administrators will have a list of resources they can turn to when they need an answer. Having a list of Web sites to turn to can often make the difference between a good day and a bad day.
  • Newsnow ( scroll bar on this page lets you access the latest news on a variety of products and platforms. Explore this site to find the latest news on Windows NT, service packs, and other relevant information. This is an excellent site to bookmark and an excellent site to use to keep in touch with changes in the industry.

  • Microsoft Technet ( a problem? Go right to the source, Microsoft Technet. This site offers columns, reviews, and the latest news and products. Technet provides online support and access to a knowledge base that can help you solve a variety of networking problems.

  • ( this site for some of the tricks of the trade brought to you by experienced programmers. It also offers utilities that could save you some valuable administrative time.

  • NT ( great site for general Windows NT information and updates. It offers security information, downloads, and discussions. It's definitely worth a look and a bookmark.

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