Help me understand Active Directory more?

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Occasional Contributor

I am learning about Active Directory (from the beginning). I have some understanding about how it is installed as a domain controller on a server but I'm failing to understand how client machines are connected to the network, setup and controlled by Active Directory, this aspect has not really been explained. Are the client machines connected to the network (server with AD) via a network switch/router and Active Directory controls the client machines with ip addresses? How is Windows usually installed on the client machines? Do they still run as administrators? What are some common restrictions Active Directory might apply to client machines and how does Active Directory actually apply those settings to the clients operating system? Can Active Directory actually restrict access for example to C:Windows on a client machine once they are a member of the domain? So I'm really looking for more of an understanding of how client machines interact with AD over the network, how AD can manipulate those machines. Thanks. 

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