Managed Domain Accounts
Managed domain accounts is feature of AdmPwd.E solution that allows automatic password management of domain user accounts. At the same time, it provides secure password retrieval and reset with ability to specify who can read and reset password.
Typical use case of this feature is management of personal, secondary accounts that are not used as primary accounts to log on to users' desktops, but rather used ad-hoc to perform management tasks on applications or infrastructure.
Main design goal for managed domain account was to provide toolset that allows easy, secure and audited password retrieval for authorized users, while keeping password in on-premises infrastructure. Nowadays, users often use personal vaults to store company credentials, and company has limited control over security of such credentials. Also, users leaving company often take passwords of sensitive accounts with them in their personal vaults, increasing the risk of misuse of such credentials.
With Managed Domain Accounts, AdmPwd.E provides password of managed domain accounts to authorized user on demand, while keeping them really random and complex. This means that users do not need to store them in personal password vaults - instead just reach for password, whenever they need it. PDS makes sure that password is regularly changed according to configured age and complexity criteria.
Configuration of Managed Domain Accounts is stored in PDS configuration file, in section
Use PowerShell cmdlets
*-AdmPwdPdsManagedAccountsContainer to maintain configuration. Powershell cmdlet makes changes as appropriate to configure OU's or containers where PDS looks for user accounts, and managed password on accounts found here.
For PDS to be to manage accounts in the container, it is required to delegate appropriate permissions to PDS service account via
Sample configuration looks like this:
Configuration above says:
- Manage password on user accounts found in container
- For each account found, change password every 30 days (43200 minutes)
- When generating password, generape password 12 chars long, that contains Large and Small character, Numbers, and Special Characters
- Encrypt the password in AD using encryption key with ID=1
- Do not maintain password history
First, move user accounts who are candidates for automatic password management to registered Managed Accounts Container.
Then, authorized users (those who were granted
Read admin password permission with PowerShell cmdlet
Set-AdmPwdReadPasswordPermision) can use password by the following means:
- Read the password via PowerShell cmdlet
- Use one of the tools that retrieve and use password automatically
Usage of tools integrated with AdmPwd.E for automatic retrieval of password of Managed Domain Account has a benefit that user does not need to deal with password at all: tool automatically uses it as needed.
Printscreen below demonstrates this on the following scenario:
- User uses tool RunAsAdmin to retrieve password of account AD\testAcc2 and use it to start new process
- Process stated is configured to use account for network operations only - local profile is not created for account AD\testAcc2, and password is not cached at all
- Still, user has ability to reach to server in security context of account AD\testAcc2 and list content of the share
- All this happened without the need to know and type the password - user has just been granted permission to retrieve password of Managed Domain Account!
RunAsAdmin.exe /user:<username> /path:<path to executable to run> [/NoLocalProfile]
If you would like to use managed domain accounts functionality for accounts that are part of the Domain Admins protected group, you will encounter a problem where SDprop repeatedly resets the rights granted to PDS to communicate with Active Directory and the rights granted to groups to read / reset passwords at regular intervals to be comply with the AdminSDHolder template.
As a best practice, we recommend solving this situation adding accounts or groups that assign the rights of PDS to communicate with AD and accounts to read or reset passwords to AdminSDHolder.