Windows Server 2008 Glossary - D

Applies To: Windows Server 2008

For more Windows Server terms, see either the Windows Server 2008 R2 Glossary or the Windows Server 2003 Glossary.

Glossary - D

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data collector

An object that defines what data will be collected from a provider (such as a counter provider or event provider).

data collector set

A group of data collectors stored as a single object.


To convert encrypted content back into its original form.

deferred enforcement

A stage of deployment that allows a noncompliant computer full access to the network until a date and time after which network access becomes restricted. Deferred enforcement provides a client computer sufficient time to remediate before health policy is enforced.


The process of distributing, installing and configuring software or hardware resources--for example, a server role or feature on one or multiple computers.

desktop session

A period of time when one user is logged on to a computer. When a user logs on to a computer, the session is created. When that user logs off, the session is ended.

destination computer

The computer that will be distributed to customers on which you install Windows. You can either run Windows Setup on the destination computer or copy a master installation onto a destination computer.

device driver

Software that enables hardware or devices (such as a printer, mouse, or keyboard) to work with your computer.


The property of a cryptographic algorithm that ensures that a change in a few input bits leads to potential changes in many of the output bits.

digital signature

Data that binds a sender's identity to the information being sent. A digital signature may be bundled with any message, file, or other digitally encoded information, or transmitted separately. Digital signatures are used in public key environments and provide nonrepudiation and integrity services.


An information source that contains data about users, computer files, or other objects. In a file system, a directory stores information about files. In a distributed computing environment (such as a Windows domain), the directory stores information about objects such as printers, fax servers, applications, databases, and users.

Directory Services Restore Mode

A special safe mode boot option for Windows Server domain controllers that allows you to repair or restore the Active Directory™ service database.

disjoint namespace

A domain namespace in which at least some of the computers do not use the Active Directory domain name as their primary Domain Name System (DNS) suffix.

See also: contiguous namespace   

Distinguished Name Tag (DNT)

An integer column that is maintained by the Extensible Storage Engine (ESE). Domain controllers use DNTs when they create objects, either locally or through replication. Each domain controller creates and maintains its own unique DNTs when it creates objects. DNTs are not shared or replicated between domain controllers. A domain controller can create a maximum of approximately 2 billion DNTs over its lifespan. Domain controllers that are installed with the Install from Media (IFM) option inherit the DNT values from the domain controller that was used to create the IFM backup. Therefore, using IFM installations can reduce the total number of DNTs that the newly installed domain controller can create over its lifespan, depending on the number of objects that are created by the domain controller from which the IFM backup was created.


A collection of computers in a networked environment that share a common database, directory database, or tree. A domain is administered as a unit with common rules and procedures, which can include security policies, and each domain has a unique name.

drive sanitation

The forced recovery of a BitLocker-protected volume through the removal of all the key binary large objects (BLOBs) that could have decrypted the disk.


Software that enables hardware or devices (such as a printer, mouse, or keyboard) to work with your computer.