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50255: Managing Windows Environments with Group Policy

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50255: Managing Windows Environments with Group Policy


  • 4 Days
  • Microsoft SA Voucher Eligible
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Course Description

Discover how to consolidate the administration of an enterprise IT infrastructure with Group Policy. In this course, you will learn to control and manage computer systems and domain users running Windows Server 2003, Server 2008, Server 2008 R2, XP, Vista, and Windows 7. Learn to create Group Policies, implement administrative and security templates, and determine best practices when deploying software packages. Walk away with the experience and tools needed to optimize your enterprise systems and networks.


1. Introduction to Group Policy

  • Group Policy and Active Directory
  • Review of Active Directory
  • Overview of Group Policy

Lab: Introduction to Group Policy

  • Examining Hardware Components
  • Exploring and Configuring the Host Operating System
  • Installing Lab Files and Starting Virtual Machines
  • Starting the Virtual Machines
  • Preparing the Active Directory Schema for Vista and Server 2008 Support

2. Group Policy Management Tools

  • What is the GPMC?
  • Installing the GPMC
  • Advanced GPMC Features
  • Migration Tables
  • Integration of RSoP Functionality
  • WMI Filters

Lab: Group Policy Management Tools

  • Renaming and Joining Client Machines to the Domain
  • Installing the OS Specific GP Controls on Clients
  • Installing and Displaying RSAT on Vista
    Server 2008 Group Policy Management Console Features
  • Utilize Command-Line and Graphical Interfaces for Backing Up/ Restoring Group Policy Objects

3. Designing a Group Policy Infrastructure

  • Implementing Group Policy
  • Planning your Group Policy Design
  • Designing Your Group Policy Solution
  • Deploying Your Group Policy
  • Managing Your Group Policy Solution

Lab: Designing a Group Policy Infrastructure

  • Exploring and Configuring Delegation
  • Using the GPMC
  • Installing and Configuring the AGPM

4. Troubleshooting Group Policy

  • Group Policy Infrastructure
  • Group Policy Deployment Order
  • Group Policy Troubleshooting Tools

Lab: Troubleshooting Group Policy

  • Analyzing Users Using Group Policy Modeling
  • Analyzing Users Using Group Policy Results
  • Running Gpresult.exe to Analyze the Group Policy Assignments
  • Checking Version Number Using Scripts
  • Utilizing Tools to Locate the PDC Emulator
  • Following GPO Processing Event in the Event Viewer Console

5. Deploying Legacy Security Templates

  • Security Architecture
  • Security Configuration and Analysis Tools
  • Applying Security Templates
  • The SECEDIT Database
  • Hardening Computer Accounts

Lab: Deploying Legacy Security Templates

  • Using the Security Configuration and Analysis Console
  • Creating Custom Templates with the Security Template Console
  • Enforcing a Custom Template Using the Secedit.exe Command-Line Tool

6. Implementing Security Using Group Policy

  • Getting Started with Security Configuration
  • Domain Security
  • Controlling Services with Group Policy
  • Enforcing an Audit Policy
  • Restricting Security Group Membership
    Using Scripts

Lab: Implementing Security Using Group Policy

  • Installing the Microsoft GPOAccelerator
  • Installing the Prescriptive Recommendations for Vista and XP Clients
  • Deploying the Security Configuration Wizard to Create, Edit, Apply, Roll Back a Security Policy
  • Configuring Enterprise Auditing through Group Policy Deployment

7. Configuring the Desktop Environment

  • Scripts for Clients
  • Desktop, Start Menu, and Taskbar Control
  • Control Panel Control
  • Windows Components
  • User Profiles
  • Folder Redirection
  • Printer Management and Pruning
  • Computer Network Settings

Lab: Configuring the Desktop Environment

  • Creating a Wireless Network Policy for Windows Vista Clients
  • Creating and Assigning a GPO to Prevent the Installation of Removable Devices
  • Sharing and Securing a Folder for the Gk.local User’s Redirection
  • Redirecting the Documents Folder for the hq.local Users
  • Creating and Assigning a GPO to Encrypt Offline Files
  • Writing and Deploying a Visual Basic Script for Log on

8. Assigning and Publishing Software Packages

  • MSI Packages
  • Group Policy as a Software Deployment Method
  • Software Deployment
  • Setting Up Distribution Points
  • Systems Management Server

Lab: Assigning and Publishing Software Packages

  • Preparing for Distribution
  • Creating a Custom Software Package
  • Deploying a Third-Party Package

9. Software Restrictions Policies

  • What is a Software Restriction Policy?
  • How to Create a Software Restriction Policy
  • Additional Rules to Identify Software
  • What Makes an Effective Software Restriction Policy

Lab: Software Restrictions Policies

  • Software Restriction Policies and the Path Rule
  • Software Restriction Policies and the Hash Rule

10. Creating and Deploying Legacy Administrative Templates

  • Overview of ADM Templates
  • Standard ADM Templates
  • Registry Structure Used by ADM Templates
  • ADM Template Syntax
  • Custom ADM Templates

Lab: Creating and Deploying Legacy Administrative Templates

  • Building an ADM Template

11. New Group Policy Features for Windows Vista and Server 2008

  • Group Policy in Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008
  • Group Policy Editor Enhancements
  • Changes to Group Policy Processing
  • New GPO Settings

Lab: New Group Policy Features for Windows Vista and Server 2008

  • Installing the ADMX Migrator
  • Migrating an .ADM to .ADMX/.ADML Format
  • Creating the ADMX Central Store and Populating the Files
  • Deploying the Policy Filtering on the Group Policy Console
  • Creating and Deploying a Starter Group Policy Console
  • Creating and Deploying Multiple Local Group Policy Objects

12. Managing Group Policy Preferences

  • Overview of Group Policy Preferences
  • Comparing Preferences and Policy Settings
  • Configuring Preference Settings
  • Group Policy Preferences: Advanced Configuration

Lab: Managing Group Policy Preferences

  • Updating Clients to Support Group Policy Preferences
  • Creating and Deploying Group Policy Preferences
  • Deploying Item-Level Targeting through Group Policy Preferences
  • Testing the Group Policy Preferences Assignments​


This course is intended for Enterprise network staff responsible for help desk support, system administration, network design, and for IT Professionals who are responsible for maintaining and securing networks through group policy.


Before taking this course, we recommend that students have experience with the Microsoft Windows Server 2003/8 and a fundamental understanding of Active Directory.

What You Will Learn

After completing this course, students will be able to:

  • Design and deploy security policies for all your Windows 2003/2008 (including R2) servers, workstations, member servers, XP, Vista, Windows 7 clients
  • Describe a downloadable console, Group Policy Management Console, from Microsoft released after Server 2003 intended as a “one-stop shop” for Group Policy administration.
  • Delegate Administrative Control of Group Policies
  • Backup and restore Group Policy Objects (GPOs) through Group Policy Management Console (GPMC)
  • Easily roll out selected software updates and operating system patches from your network environment
  • Tips for troubleshooting Group Policy