Active Directory (AD) is a directory service that enables organizations to manage user, group, and computer accounts. AD provides a centralized location for all user and group information, as well as security settings for computers. AD can be used on-premises or in the cloud. Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) is Microsoft’s cloud-based identity platform. Azure AD provides a single sign-on experience for users and organizations across devices, platforms, and clouds. Azure AD supports both single sign-on and authentication through two-factor authentication. Azure AD lets you manage user identities and access rights, and secure your applications and data. Azure AD also offers a variety of features such as a secure password manager, auto-unlock for devices, and application access control. Organizations can manage user identities and access rights through Azure AD, and use other Azure services, such as storage and compute, to extend their identity solutions.
Azure AD offers a number of benefits, such as simplified management, global scale, and reduced costs. Compared to AD, Azure AD has several advantages. Azure AD supports more than just user identities; it also supports application identities, which let you secure the entire application experience for users. Azure AD also offers a number of features, such as single sign-on and application access control, that are not available in AD. Additionally, Azure AD supports global scale and is managed through the Azure cloud. Another advantage of Azure AD is that it is easier to manage and scale than AD. Finally, Azure AD offers reduced costs when compared to AD. Overall, Azure AD is a better solution for many organizations than AD.