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Kerberos Authentication

Updated: March 24, 2009

Applies To: Windows Server 2003 R2, Windows Server 2003 with SP1, Windows Server 2003 with SP2

Kerberos is an authentication mechanism used to verify user or host identity. This page contains the information you need to evaluate, plan, and deploy Kerberos, the preferred authentication method for services in Windows Server 2003.

Product Evaluation

Planning and Architecture




  • Troubleshooting Kerberos Errors

    This white paper helps you troubleshoot Kerberos authentication problems by outlining simple troubleshooting basics, explaining the causes of common Kerberos errors, and summarizing common troubleshooting tools.

  • Troubleshooting Kerberos Delegation

    This white paper explains how to troubleshoot delegation issues that can arise in Kerberos authentication scenarios, summarizes required infrastructure, and describes Windows authentication scenarios.

  • SPN Query

    This script queries the Active Directory Global Catalog for a security principal with a specified service principal name (SPN).

Technical Reference

IT Developer

Additional Resources



Product Support


Kerberos Resources for Windows 2000 Server

The information in the following articles also applies to Windows Server 2003–based Kerberos:

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