Domain and workgroup are methods for organizing and managing computers on a network. All computers on a network must be part of either a domain or a workgroup. When Windows is first installed on a computer, it is automatically assigned to a workgroup, as shown in the figure.


A domain is a group of computers and electronic devices with a common set of rules and procedures administered as a unit. A domain does not refer to a single location or specific type of network configuration. Computers in a domain are a logical grouping of connected computers that can be located in different locations in the world. A specialized server called a domain controller manages all security-related aspects of users and network resources, centralizing security and administration.

For data protection, an administrator performs a routine backup of all files on the servers. If a computer crashes, or data is lost, the administrator can easily recover the data from a recent backup.


A workgroup is a collection of workstations and servers on a LAN that are designed to communicate and exchange data with one another. Each individual workstation controls its user accounts, security information, and access to data and resources.