Active Directory distribution groups vs security groups best practices

ma flag

Not an AD admin but in the need of getting better with good AD practices, I cannot find a definitive answer on how to manage distribution groups that could possibly have the same members as security groups (eg security groups for SharePoint whose members should receive mails) : should the groups remain totally independant and managed by hand or if not, which one should import the other ? Can the security group be imported into the distribution group? Is nesting a good or bad practice in the long term? Any other way to sync distribution out of security group ? I've also just discovered security groups can be "mail-enabled", I don't know from which version on. Is this altogether the correct way to manage this common situation ? Does it introduce complexity? Is there a method like AGDLP for managing distribution groups? (Pointers on Microsoft documentation appreciated)

I did read ths question nesting-distribution-group-within-security-group, but there is no one solution!

us flag

The difference between SG and DG is only that DGs can't be used to control access rights / permissions. If you already have SG with all needed members then creating another group would increase administrative overhead. Just mail-enable existing SG.

As for nesting, it mostly works in on-premises products, like AD/Exchange/SharePoint but might not work for some scenarios for Microsoft 365 cloud services. It really depends on what exactly you are trying to achieve


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