For example, if the Accounts section in an organization is required to be configured to use a separate DNS server and the default gateway to communicate with the Internet, the DHCP administrators can create a new DHCP user class for the Accounts department, and can configure all the computers in the department to receive the settings as defined in the user class. This way, every time the DHCP client computers from the Accounts department request an IP address from the DHCP server, the settings that the DHCP administrators have configured for the Accounts DHCP user class would be assigned to the DHCP client computers in the Accounts section.
Working with the DHCP user classes requires a two-step configuration where in the first step you are required to define a new DHCP user class, and in the second step you create a new DHCP policy in which you configure the settings granularly for the newly created DHCP user class.
In this two=parts tutorial series, in the first part you will learn how to create a new DHCP user class in the Windows Server 2012 DHCP server. In the second part, you will learn how to create a new DHCP policy using the created DHCP user class so that the appropriate client computers can receive the defined settings.
Note: Since the process of configuring the DHCP user classes is changed in Windows Server 2012, you are required to create the policies, rather than configuring the scope options from the ‘Advanced’ tab as was the case with earlier versions of Microsoft network operating systems, to make the user classes effective.
Here is how you can define a new DHCP user class in the Windows Server 2012 DHCP server:
- Log on to the Windows Server 2012 DHCP server with the appropriate account credentials.
- If not already started, initialize the Server Manager window from the bottom left corner of the screen.
- On the opened Server Manager window, from the left pane, click to select the DHCP category.
- From the right pane, under the SERVERS section, right-click the DHCP server from the displayed list.
- From the context menu that appears, click the DHCP Manager option.
- On the opened DHCP snap-in, from the left pane, expand the server name. (DC-01.MYDOMAIN.COM for this demonstration.).
- From the displayed list, click to select and then right-click IPv4 container.
- From the context menu that appears, click the Define User Classes option.
- On the opened DHCP User Classes box, click the Add button.
- On the New Class box, specify a new name and brief description about the new DHCP user class in the Name and Description fields respectively.
- Type an identifiable and self-explanatory text under the ASCII column in the available list.
- Click OK when done to create a new DHCP user class and to close the New Class box.
- Back on the DHCP User Classes box, click Close to close the box.
Once the above configuration is done, you can now move on to the second part of this tutorial where you will learn how to create a new DHCP policy, so that the client computers can receive the settings from the defined DHCP user class, provided they have been configured accordingly.