Windows Small Business Server 2011 : Managing User Roles

11/4/2012 7:51:46 PM
Gaining access to the resources of the SBS network requires a domain user account, which authenticates the identity of the person making the connection and controls what resources a user has the right to access.

In Windows SBS 2011, by default all user accounts fall into one of three roles, or categories:

  • Standard User

  • Network Administrator

  • Standard User with Administration Links

Each user account you add will be based on one of these user roles (or on another user role that you create). In the interests of sanity (your own), keep the number of user roles to a minimum. It is far easier to control access through group membership rather than creating multiple user roles. You also have the ability to change the specifics of access and resource limits for individual user accounts, but resist the temptation. It can quickly get unmanageable.

1. The Standard User Role

Most SBS users should be assigned the Standard User role. This role enables access to shared folders, email, the Internet, printers, fax services, Remote Web Workplace, and SharePoint Foundation (Companyweb). All of these access points can be configured within the Standard User Role. To make changes to the Standard User role, start the Windows SBS Console and follow these steps:

  1. Click Users And Groups and then click the User Roles tab.

  2. Right-click Standard User and select Edit User Role Properties. The Standard User Properties dialog box will open, as shown in Figure 1. In the left pane, click a category to see the settings for this role.

    Figure 1. Settings for a Standard User role

    • General displays a description of the role.

    • Remote Access shows how the user role can access the network from a remote location. By default, anyone with this user role can access Remote Web Workplace and is automatically a member of the Windows SBS Remote Web Workplace Users. An optional setting is to allow the user role to access the Virtual Private Network. Selecting this check box adds all users assigned to this role to the Windows SBS Virtual Private Network Users group.

    • Email allows you to set a maximum mailbox size. Clear the check box if you don’t want to impose a limit on the amount of disk space a user can use for storing mail.

    • Folders is a page for managing and redirecting folders for the user role. As on the Email page, you can enforce a limit on the size of shared folders. In addition, folder redirection can be set and a folder redirection quota imposed.

    • Groups shows the group membership for users assigned this role. You can add a group membership by clicking Add or remove a group membership by highlighting a group and clicking Remove.

    • Web Sites allows the choice of sites to be available to this user role.


    IMPORTANT All the users assigned the same role will have the same settings. Changes you make to a user role won’t just change future user accounts, they will change all accounts assigned to that role. Don’t remove any of the standard group memberships from any of the default SBS roles. Doing so will likely have unintended consequences.

  3. Click OK when finished. You are asked if you want to apply the customization to all accounts based on the role. Click Yes and the user role changes are applied.

2. The Standard User with Administration Links

The Standard User with Administration Links role has, as you’d suspect, the Standard User role access plus membership in groups that give users assigned this role the ability to perform administrative tasks. Click the Groups link to view the groups that this role includes.

3. Network Administrator Role

The Network Administrator Role provides unrestricted system access to any account it is assigned to. The E-mail and Folders settings are the same as for the other default roles. Remote Access and Web Sites are different, however. On the Remote Access page, you can add or remove access to the virtual private network, but not to the Remote Web Workplace (which is on by default). Similarly, the Web Sites page allows Outlook Web Access to be granted or withheld, but all accounts based on the Network Administrator role will have access to Remote Web Workplace and the internal website.

If your network is administered by a third-party provider, access to Outlook Web Access and your virtual private network (if you have one) isn’t necessary, but an administrator must be able to log on to the server.

4. Creating a New User Role

Perhaps you have some users for whom none of the standard user roles is appropriate. In that case, it’s simple to create a new user role by following these steps:

  1. Open the Windows SBS console, select Users And Groups, and then select User Roles.

  2. In the Tasks pane, select Add A New User Role to start the wizard.

  3. In the Add A New User Role page, shown in Figure 2, enter text in the User Role Name and Description fields.

    Figure 2. Creating a new user role

  4. By default, the new user role is set to be based on the existing Standard User role. Clear the check box if you want to start from scratch, or choose another user role to base the new role on.

  5. Also by default, the new user role will appear as an optional choice when creating new user accounts. Clear the check box if you don’t want the role to display in the Add New User Account Wizard or the Add Multiple New User Accounts Wizard.

  6. To make the new user role the default choice when adding new user accounts, select the check box labeled The User Role Is The Default In The Add New User Account Wizard And In The Add Multiple New User Accounts Wizard. Click Next.

  7. On the Choose User Role Permissions (Group Membership) page, add or remove group memberships. Remember that all user accounts you base on this role will inherit these same memberships. When you’ve adjusted group memberships, click Next.

  8. On the Choose E-mail Settings page, enforce or remove a mailbox size quota for this user role. Outlook Web Access is on by default, but you can remove that as well if you want. Click Next.

  9. Choose the remote access settings for this user role, as shown in Figure 3. Click Next when you have made these settings.

    Figure 3. Choosing remote access settings for a new user role

  10. On the Choose Share Folder Access For This User Role page, choose the Shared Folder settings for the user role, including the quota limits that will be applied. Select Back to return to previous pages to change any of your selections. When finished, click Add User Role.

  11. The New User Role Was Added Successfully To The Network page announces that the new user role has been added and provides an option to add a user account or multiple user accounts. Click Finish or one of the selection areas to proceed to adding accounts.

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