How to Add an Active Directory Account to SharePoint

One of the most common questions when someone starts to using SharePoint is how to add users. SharePoint does not provide a way to authenticate or control the password accounts. SharePoint depends on Active Directory (AD) (or similar) to provide the control and authentication mechanism.

You can have hundreds of user accounts in AD, but they won’t be in your SharePoint farm until you specifically add them.

Active Directory Section


As an example, here we have our sharepoint.local domain with our demo users.

If we select the location of the users, we can add a user by clicking: Action>New>User


Here we can see the New User Object window. Fill this out with the relevant information. I used a ‘Jane Doe’ example.


The next window will be the password data window. Enter the password you want for the account. Check to make sure it meets your AD environment’s password complexity requirements. I typically will clear the ‘User must change password at next logon’ option, since there is no built in way for SharePoint to reset the password. I do select the ‘User cannot change password’ and ‘Password never expires’ options. Select whichever options that you feel comfortable with and are suitable to your environment.


Once this completed there will be a user object in the Active Directory structure called ‘Jane Doe’. Now, we can log into SharePoint and create a link to this new AD account so that SharePoint recognizes the account.

SharePoint Section


Next, log onto your server with appropriate administrator rights to add SharePoint accounts and click: Site Actions>Site Settings>Users and Permissions>People and groups. You will land on this page.



Notice that by default we have landed in the ‘Members’ group. By default, there are three groups in a SharePoint site.

  • Members: This group can add/delete their own content to the SharePoint site.
  • Visitors: This group can only read from the SharePoint site.
  • Owners: This is can add/delete all content and perform some administrative functionality.

To add our existing ‘Jane Doe’ user, press ‘New’. Add in the appropriate user account information.


Select the following options and press OK:

  • Group membership
  • Initial E-Mail greeting

You now have an AD account that is a part of your SharePoint site. If you have any question about dedicated SharePoint solutions at Rackspace please contact me ( I will be more than happy to help with any questions.

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