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Windows2000 Dfs setup across WAN

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  • Windows2000 Dfs setup across WAN

    I am in the process of redesigning all the server file structure. At the moment, everything is on one share. A real mess I inherited. One specific question I have is that ALL the servers , eight of them, setup the same. And in this one share, there is a folder called PROJ. This contains data related to projects being worked on. This is where most of the diskspace usage is located. Most of the subfolders are unique per server location and there are some folders that are the same as on other servers, work sharing across offices. What I want to try is to take all the PROJ folders (which are e:\data\data\proj on each server) and consolidate them into a DFS share. Then I can setup login scripts to map this to all the employees. I see that this could be an advantage in that everyone has access to project folders. Does it matter in a DFS if users are writing to these files?
    Also, if I make this DFS a mapped drive on my backup server, would Veritas would be able to create a complete backup of all the proj folders in the WAN.

    Is something like this feasible? Are there any short comings to the 2000 version? I see that 2003 has removed limitations. Can someone shed some insight on this and pluses and minuses they have come across? Could this fail also? Especially with critical data like this?

    Thanks

  • #2
    I'm not sure if you intend to replicate all data, or just create DFS links. Let me warn you against DFS replication in this situation. DFS is designed for mainly static data. The big problem here is replication conflict resolution. If two users change the same file on different locations at the same time, one of the files will get lost. It is possible (but hard) to recover that file, but you really don't want this kind of bad user experience.

    However, a domain-based DFS with links to all PROJ shares is a great idea. One namespace for all PROJ folders, and as you say, one common entry point for a drive mapping.

    > Does it matter in a DFS if users are writing to these files?

    Not if you use links.

    > Also, if I make this DFS a mapped drive on my backup server, would Veritas would be able to create a complete backup of all the proj folders in the WAN.

    Sure. A UNC path would probably work as well.

    > Are there any short comings to the 2000 version?

    Nothing major (if you use links!)

    > Could this fail also?

    Use a domain-based DFS root for redundancy. I can't think of further problems.

    Comment


    • #3
      Windows2000 Dfs setup across WAN

      wkasdo,

      Thanks so much for this. I do not want replication. I just want to consolidate (in a sense).

      The structure is now on each server the following:

      n:\proj\####-### <- proj numbers.

      On each server, there might be a folder (####-###) that has the same name, with mostly different files. In this case, would I need to consolidate these folders first?

      I want it so that all the ####-### will show up under proj. So we are looking at 100s of sub folders. This is my concern on making this work.
      As this is CAD data mostly that has to have a specific drive folder path stored to open reference data.

      Or must I create a subfolder under PROJ for each office.

      n:\proj ( would be the Dfs root)
      and then there is a subfolder for each location
      \loc1
      \loc2
      etc...

      Or can I trick it into seeing all the ####-### from each server under the PROJ root?

      Thanks

      Wtdrisco

      Comment


      • #4
        > I want it so that all the ####-### will show up under proj

        That's impossible. You cannot have a virtual root that will combine multiple shares on one level. The best you can do is to have a subfolder for each share:

        \\domain\dfsroot\proj1\####-###
        \\domain\dfsroot\proj2\####-###
        ...

        Or... now that I think about it, you _could_ do it if you shared each ####-### folder individually, and add those to the DFS root instead. Then it would look like this:

        \\domain\dfsroot\####-###
        \\domain\dfsroot\####-###
        ...


        Or must I create a subfolder under PROJ for each office.

        n:\proj ( would be the Dfs root)
        and then there is a subfolder for each location
        \loc1
        \loc2
        etc...
        That's the basic idea, although the \loc? are really links to shared folders of course.

        Comment


        • #5
          Just to follow up on my own post:
          Or... now that I think about it, you _could_ do it if you shared each ####-### folder individually, and add those to the DFS root instead. Then it would look like this:

          \\domain\dfsroot\####-###
          \\domain\dfsroot\####-###
          You don't really need to share each ####-### folder. Since W2000 has root sharing, you can just link into the share. Explicitly, a link ####-### refers to \\server\PROJ\####-###, where PROJ would be the shared folder.

          Comment


          • #6
            You don't really need to share each ####-### folder. Since W2000 has root sharing, you can just link into the share. Explicitly, a link ####-### refers to \\server\PROJ\####-###, where PROJ would be the shared folder.

            Ok I see what you are talking about.

            \\server1\proj\ in office #1 |
            \\server2\proj\ in office #2 | - Geographic locations
            \\Server3\proj\ in office #3 |

            I can create the DFS but I must show the three different servers as a folder. So it would be

            \\DFSRoot\proj1 -> \\server1\proj
            \proj2 -> \\server2\proj
            \proj3 -> \\server3\proj

            So in the shared folder that would be shared \\DFSRoot would be the N drive, they would see proj1, proj2 and proj3 folders from which they can open and edit files within. (if the bandwidth suffices). Considering that this is CAD data ( AutoCad files).

            Is this about right? So depending on the folder "####-###" they could find it under one of the subfolders of the DFSRoot.

            Thanks

            Wtdrisco

            Comment


            • #7
              > Is this about right? So depending on the folder "####-###" they could find it under one of the subfolders of the DFSRoot.

              Yes, one way to do it. I knew this was tricky, because you can do it nicer: you can incorporate a link for each "####-###" folder. That way the users don't see the subfolders.

              \\dfsroot\####-001 --> \\server1\proj1\####-001
              \\dfsroot\####-002 --> \\server1\proj2\####-002
              \\dfsroot\####-003 --> \\server2\proj1\####-003

              And so on. Do you get my point?

              Comment


              • #8
                Yes, one way to do it. I knew this was tricky, because you can do it nicer: you can incorporate a link for each "####-###" folder. That way the users don't see the subfolders.

                \\dfsroot\####-001 --> \\server1\proj1\####-001
                \\dfsroot\####-002 --> \\server1\proj2\####-002
                \\dfsroot\####-003 --> \\server2\proj1\####-003

                And so on. Do you get my point?

                Yea I get it. That would be great. As this is my ultimate goal to link all these project folders into one mapped drive on all the designer desktops.

                This will create some consolidation on our part as some servers (shared work across branch offices) have the same ####-### folders. So I would bet I would have to consolidate these folders on one server for this to work smoothly in Windows2000 Server Standard Edition. There is an incredible amount of data and size in these folders.

                As Server 1 might have 300 ####-### folders
                Server 2 might have 20 ####-### folders.

                So branch offices would be accessing files across servers if they are a part of a work share project. Does Dfs do anything for this file transfer?

                Thanks

                Comment


                • #9
                  So branch offices would be accessing files across servers if they are a part of a work share project. Does Dfs do anything for this file transfer?
                  I'm not sure if I understand the question. It does nothing in terms of caching, if that is what you mean. DFS is just a redirector that tells the client where to get the files. Could you clarify?

                  Comment

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