Active Directory can hold valuable user data, including contact information, their departments, and even office locations. Using this data source for administrative purposes can save you time when performing everyday tasks like auditing user accounts and checking software licenses. In this IT Dojo video, I show you an easy way to extract the data stored in Active Directory using the Comma Separated Value Data Exchange (CSVDE) command.

The CSVDE command is a tool you may never know about, unless you just stumble across it. But once you find it, you’ll find all kinds of cool things it can do. For example, you can generate a dataset from an OU called ‘Directors’ that contains each user’s given-name, surname, and default e-mail address using the command (all on one line):

csvde -d “OU=Directors,DC=domain,dc=local” -f test.csv -r “(&(objectClass=user)(objectCategory=person)” -l ” givenName, sn, mail”

This is just one of many ways to use the CSVDE command. For more information on using the CSVDE command read Justin Fielding’s article, “Simplify admin tasks by exporting Active Directory data with CSVDE.” From the article page, you can print Justin’s tip, save it to your TechRepublic Workspace, e-mail it to a friend or colleague, and even Digg it.

For more Active Directory advice, check out the following TechRepublic Resources: