Geeky question of the day. . . Why .local for the default Windows SBS 2008 domain name extension?

Geeky question of the day. . . Why .local for the default Windows SBS 2008 domain name extension?

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[Today's post comes to us courtesy of Becky Ochs]

We’re getting some great questions here at the SMB Summit. One of yesterday’s geeky questions of the day was, "Why are we are defaulting to use .local as the DNS extension for Windows SBS 2008? Isn’t that a problem for Macs?"

So here’s our logic for using .local and why we still make it flexible for you to choose your own internal domain extension . . .

  • Historically, there have been issues with Mac OS X 10.2 and the use of .local that result in connectivity issues. However, the updated releases of the Mac OS no longer have the conflict with .local and there is a workaround to address the Mac OS X 10.3 and newer release.
  • The default configuration of .local accommodates most folks for an installation, but if they really don’t like that default, they can easily specify the fully qualified domain name by using the Windows SBS Answer File Tool.
  • When you specify domain information in the Answer File Tool, we recommend that you do not use a public TLD (eg .com). If you really want to do that, we won't prevent this, but keep in mind that this is an advanced configuration that will require you to do additional configuration of your networking on your own.
  • We will not limit the number of labels in the DNS name to 2, so you can use a.b.c if you really want. However, it must have at least 1 label (i.e. you can’t just have a full DNS name of “contoso”, it must have 2 labels such as “contoso.local”)

And for those of you SBS 2003 folks out there who use Macs, here's a quick plug for the whitepaper that discusses how to add a Mac to an SBS 2003 network:

http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/thankyou.aspx?familyId=89ee677b-0ff6-4558-a54b-6070e2c8cd65&displayLang=en

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