How to create Active Directory User Accounts

Written by Paul Hill on February 25, 2021

Paul Hill is the founder of and IT instructor to over 500,000 students online!

In this lesson you will learn how to create Active Directory user accounts.

Step 1. Open Server Manager

Open Server Manager by clicking the Windows button and clicking Server Manager or by searching for Server Manager.

Step 2. Start Active Directory

In server manager, click Tools > Active Directory Users and Computers:

Step 3. Create the Active Directory User

Right click on your desired OU and select New > User:

Now the new user window will appear. Specify your users info like first name, middle initial (if you want), last name and user name.

For the user logon name I prefer to use the first.last format, but this is really up to you. Whatever you decide, make sure all of your users keep the same consistent naming convention.

Once you enter all of these details you can click Next.

Step 4. Configure Password

On the next page you will create the new users password. Below the two password prompts, we have the option to specify the following settings:

User must change password at next logon

When the user logs in, they will receive a message forcing them to change the password before logging in as shown below:

User cannot change password

This setting will not allow the user to change their password once they log in. Selecting this is a BAD security practice.

Password never expire

This will configure the user account to not be force to reset their password when their password expires. The length of time before a password expires is configured with Group Policy. Using this setting is also a BAD security practice.

Account is disabled

This is a good option to use when you’re creating a user account for a new hire that doesn’t start for another two weeks. You don’t want to have active user accounts that are not being used.

Click Next.

Step 5. Complete User Account

Click Finish to complete the user account process.

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