Preparing a deployment team

In large organizations, the network architecture and Active Directory infrastructure is often highly complex and sophisticated. Adding UNIX, Linux, and Mac OS X computers and users to this infrastructure requires careful planning and is handled best with a clearly documented deployment plan. This guide is intended to help you develop such a plan and to suggest the issues you should consider in designing a deployment that suits your organization. For an example of what a deployment plan might look like, see Simplified environment analysis and zone design template.

Depending on the size of your organization, you might want to assemble a cross-functional deployment team to plan and implement a deployment strategy, set up and test a pilot deployment program, and refine, document, and roll-out operations across the organization. In addition, a deployment team might include project leads and IT staff members who will be responsible for maintaining and managing Server Suite and Active Directory on an ongoing basis after deployment or developers who will extend or integrate applications to work with Server Suite and Active Directory.

A typical deployment team might consist of members in the following roles:

Active Directory enterprise or domain administrators

Know the structure and trust relationships of one or more Active Directory forests, including the topology of the Active Directory site and the roles of the domain controllers. These administrators may also be responsible for provisioning and decommissioning accounts or maintaining the tools for these business processes.

UNIX administrators or administrators with specific expertise

Manage access for all or specific groups of UNIX, Linux, or Mac OS X computers. These administrators may be responsible for specific resources, such as the servers that host mission-critical applications or a web farm, or have specific knowledge, such Oracle database administration or AIX administrative tools.

Security administrators

Establish security policies and audit trails and define the procedures for securing computer resources and user account information. These administrators may also define the provisioning rules for the organization or have detailed knowledge of the existing provisioning process.

IT or network architects

Understand the overall layout of the organization’s network, including internal connectivity and access to the Internet, firewalls, port usage, bandwidth and latency issues.

Application developers

Write programs that require authentication and authorization services. Application developers might also include UNIX programmers who will be responsible for writing scripts to automate administrative tasks, such as creating zones or adding new users to a zone.

Functional testers

Develop test cases for the user scenarios the deployment team wants to validate.

Centrify administrative operators

Use Access Manager and other consoles on Windows, UNIX command line programs, ADEdit library, or PowerShell scripts to manage users, groups, computers, or zones. These operators might be delegated administrators for specific zones after deployment or existing Active Directory administrators who add and remove users from groups or manage Active Directory containers.

Database administrators

Install and manage database instances and control access to database records. If you are planning a deployment that includes auditing user activity, the deployment team should include at least one database administrator to plan for and create the databases that will store captured sessions and audit meta-data. A database administrator can also provide procedures and guidance for backing up, archiving, and removing historical data as appropriate for your organization’s record retention policies.

Internal or external auditors

Understand regulatory compliance requirements for the organization and industry. Auditors typically know the type of information they need and can define the reports that will satisfy their needs.

Assembling a cross-functional team with members who have expertise in working with Active Directory and Windows architecture and members who have expertise in managing UNIX, Linux, or Mac OS X servers and workstations is often a key component of a successful deployment.