Understanding the Difference between Central Services Domain and Hokies Domain


This article describes the difference between the Central Services Domain and Hokies Domain.


Hokies Domain

All VT users receive an account in the Hokies domain called the Hokies ID. The Hokies domain is where your Hokies ID is managed. You use your Hokies ID to access

  • Microsoft-specific resources such as the Exchange Online email service and Microsoft 365,
  • Your workstation if the computer was set up as part of the Hokies Domain,
  • Various file servers, 
  • MyCAT, and
  • CAT.

Virginia Tech user accounts within the Hokies domain are provisioned during Virginia Tech Onboarding. They are deprovisioned as part of the Virginia Tech deprovisioning process. A department can request to obtain a sponsored Hokies ID with the Hokies ID Service Catalog entry.

Central Services Domain (CSD)

The Central Services Domain (CSD) is a child domain within Virginia Tech’s Windows Active Directory (AD) that is managed by Collaborative Computing Solutions (CCS) within the Division of IT. It is available for all Virginia Tech affiliated departments.

The intention of the CSD is to provide departments with a stable, secure environment in which system accounts can be created without the department needing to maintain its own infrastructure. If your department has set up a domain within CSD you can

For departmental IT administrators, some key features of using the CSD are

  • The department’s computer accounts residing in CSD will be assigned to an Organizational Unit (OU) named after the requesting department.
  • User accounts will continue to exist in the Hokies domain, so users who have systems in CSD will log on with their Hokies ID.
  • Two staff members from the department will be assigned as administrators. These administrators will be able to perform basic administrative functions, such as resetting passwords or joining systems to the domain.

To request to have an organizational unit (OU) created within the CSD, use this Service Catalog entry, Central Services Domain Organizational Units.

Additional information can be found at Using the Organizational Unit Administrator Tool and Other Admin Information