How to set up an Active Directory Sync

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How to set up an Active Directory Sync

Print Director can import and maintain user records by synchronising its database with Active Directory (AD). This alleviates the administrative task of ensuring users have the correct up-to-date settings and information (e.g. full name, email address, telephone extension). Once the user has been placed in the correct Organisational Unit (OU), they will inherit all the settings that have been defined for the Department in Print Director (e.g. Rules and device access, account access and opening balance, popup billing requirements, etc.)

Create the Active Directory Sync Scheduled Task

  • Open Resource Manager.
  • Navigate to Scheduled Tasks > Active Directory Sync.
  • On the right hand side, click Add.
  • In the Scheduled Task Name textbox, enter a descriptive name, e.g. Management user accounts.
  • In the Execute on PDServer dropdown, choose the server on which you would like the task to execute.

Specify the schedule on which the task will execute

  • Open your AD Sync scheduled task if it is not still open.
  • Click the Schedule tab.
  • In the Schedule Range frame, change to the desired Execute time if the task is not going to run Hourly. If it is going to run Hourly, the execute time has no effect.
  • In the Schedule Pattern frame, choose the frequency of the execution. The default is Daily. AD Syncs are often required to run Hourly to ensure that user information stays current.

Specify the import limits and containers

  • Open your AD Sync scheduled task if it is not still open.
  • On the Import Settings tab, ensure that the correct domain name appears in the Server or domain name textbox. This could be a domain name, server host name, or IP address.
  • If you want to limit the users imported to a particular security/distribution group, enter the group name in the Required group membership textbox. Click the browse button next to the textbox to enumerate the groups that exist on the domain.
  • Ticking the Don’t import disabled users checkbox will avoid importing disabled users.
  • If the container from which we will import contains other nested OUs we might want to import the user objects from all these nested OUs. If this is the case, tick the Import from all sub-OUs checkbox. If you only want to import users that exist in the root of the container, untick this checkbox.
  • In the Import from the following containers box, we will define one or more containers from which to import:
    • Click the Add button.
    • A Browse window will appear showing a tree structure of the domain. If you want to import from the entire domain, tick the root domain item. Otherwise, expand the domain and choose one or more OUs from which to import (Note: Do not tick OUs that are contained within other ticked OUs unless the Import from all sub-OUs checkbox is unticked).
    • Click OK.

Specify how users will be placed into groups (Departments)

  • Open your AD Sync scheduled task if it is not still open.
  • On the AD Sync Settings tab, click the User Group Mapping tab.
  • Normally users are placed into Departments based on the OU in which their account exists. This is why the Map Department to dropdown defaults to Organisational Unit. However, this is not always the case. Some sites would like the Department mapping to be based on an attribute (e.g. Department, Division or Company). It could even be mapped to a Custom attribute. Choose the mapping method from the Map Department to dropdown.
  • If users are imported that cannot be placed into a pre-defined Department, they will be placed into the Department that appears in the Add unmatched users to dropdown.
  • Tick the Auto-create unmatched Departments checkbox, if Departments must simply be auto-created based on the Department mapping settings.
  • If the Department mapping is based on OU, then we can specify which parent OU must map to the Department. This can be the parent of a parent, or indeed the parent of a parent to any number of parent levels. If the user’s immediate OU is called Staff, which is contained within an OU called CallCentre, we would want the Department to map to CallCentre and not Staff. In this case we would specify Auto-create user OU 2 levels from User Side. Otherwise if the user objects have immediate parents called CallCentre, HR, Marketing, etc. we would choose 1 level from User side.

Specify user attribute mappings

  • Open your AD Sync scheduled task if it is not still open.
  • On the AD Sync Settings tab, click the Map User Attributes tab.
  • Map user name: Tick this checkbox to specify the attribute that contains the user’s full name. The default is [cn] but you could change this to specify two attributes: [givenName] [sn]. This will import the user’s first name and surname with a space in between.
  • Map Controller User ID: If you use PIN number authentication on the printers, and the PIN numbers are contained in the AD, tick this and specify the attribute.
  • Map card number: If you have card readers on the printers and the card numbers are recorded in the Active Directory tick this and specify the attribute.
  • Map User Account Code: Mapping the User Account Code is only necessary if you have users with popup account billing and their User Account Code is different from their windows account name. If left unticked, it will default to their windows account name.
  • Map email address: Mapping the email address is especially useful. Email addresses are used for the following:
    • Scan-to-me functionality on printers using the embedded module.
    • Auto-emailing directly from Resource Manager (useful for sending PIN numbers).
    • Rule violation notifications.
  • Map secondary email address: Currently, the secondary email address is only used for Google Cloud Print authentication. When documents arrive at the print server from Google Cloud, they contain the users’ Gmail address. Print Director then authenticates the user by matching the Gmail address to the secondary email address.
  • Map PBX PIN: If telephone PIN numbers are stored in the Active Directory, specify the attribute by ticking this checkbox. This allows calls to be assigned to users based on their telephone PIN number (and not just the extension number).
  • Map Extension: Allocating users to telephone extension numbers assists in producing more meaningful reports as calls are assigned to users. This is critical for users who make use of popup account billing. The system must be able to assign calls to users in order for the popup to appear at the correct workstation.
    • Create Ext on PBX: The pre-defined PBX record on which the Extension exists can be chosen here or:
    • Map PBX to attribute: If the PBX name exists in an attribute for each user it can be specified.

Test the AD Sync settings to ensure correct attribute mapping and Department placement

Once all the settings have defined, click the Test Settings button. This will not make any changes to the database, it will just show a list of imported users for the purposes of confirming that all the attributes specified are correct.

Note that this test will query the Active Directory using the credentials for the user account under which Resource Manager is running. This is normally a domain user account so it should work. If however, you are logged in with a local user account, an ‘access denied’ error may be encountered. Please run Resource Manager under a domain account and try again.

Note that this test does not confirm that the actual scheduled task will succeed. This is because the task is run on the PDServer which runs under the SYSTEM account. This must be tested separately.

Ensure the PDServer service is running under an account that can query the Active Directory

The PDServer service has the job of executing scheduled tasks. By default, the PDServer runs under the SYSTEM account. This user account has local administrative rights to the server. This is sufficient for operational tasks such as communicating with the embedded modules on printers and emailing reports. However, the SYSTEM account may not have sufficient rights to query the AD. If the server on which the PDServer is running is a domain controller, it will most likely be able to query the AD. If it is a different server, then it may not. In this case, it may be necessary to change the account under which the PDServer service runs to a domain account.

Test whether the PDServer can execute the scheduled task

If you know that the SYSTEM account will not be able to query the Active Directory, skip to the next heading (Create domain user account). Otherwise the quickest way to confirm is to test it:

  • Open Resource Manager.
  • Navigate to Scheduled Tasks > Active Directory Sync.
  • In the right hand pane, right click the AD Sync and choose Execute on next refresh.
  • Now click PDServers.
  • Right click the server on the right and choose Refresh. Ensure you choose the correct server – the one specified when defining the scheduled task.

Now wait a minute or two and then click back on Scheduled Tasks > Active Directory Sync. In the Last Status column you might see an error or it will tell you how many users were imported. If you see an error (e.g. The server is not operational), it is most likely because the SYSTEM account cannot query the AD. In this case move on to the next section.

Create a domain user account and add it to the local administrators user group

These steps are only necessary if the SYSTEM account cannot query the AD.

The user account that is created only needs to be a member of the Domain Users security group. It does not need any other domain access rights. However, it does have the following requirements:

  • The password for the account must not expire. If the account’s password changes, the service will not function.
  • The user account must be added to the local Administrators user group on the server. Local administrative rights are required to perform its other tasks.

Change the Log On account for the PDServer service

  • In the Server Manager, click Tools > Services.
  • In the Services window, scroll down to PDServer and double click the item.
  • Click the Log On tab.
  • Change the Log on as option to This account.
  • Click the Browse button.
  • Enter the user account name and click Check Names.
  • If the account matches, click OK. If not, ensure the From this location is showing the domain or Entire Directory and try again.
  • Enter the user account password and again in the confirmation field.
  • Click OK.
  • Restart the PDServer service

Document revision date: 2018/10/12

Software version: 2.2.49.3

 

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