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Folder Redirection: Local Caching of My Documents

Posted on 2003-03-20
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Last Modified: 2012-05-04
Hi,

I have a roaming profile.

I've set up a policy to redirect my 'My Docs' to a sharepoint. This works fine - I see 'My Docs' and it looks local, but anything I add to it is actually copied to the network point I've defined.

However, If I disconnect from the network, log in using my cached profile, and open 'My Docs' I can see local copies of the all the files I created on that machine. Is there a way to prevent this happening? (i.e. to ensure that files saved in 'My Docs' are *only* stored on the network).

(Reason for asking is this: If I connect to a computer using the cached profile I only see files created on THAT PARTICULAR COMPUTER. If I am a roaming user and have created (say) 100 documents using a number of machines, I do not want to log on without a network (e.g. to a laptop) and see 10, or 20, or 50 of these documents - I want to see either all of them (in which case I'd use offline folders) or none of them. Seeing just a selection of them will thoroughly confuse me :)

Cheers for any thoughts...

Matt
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Question by:cephal0pod
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16 Comments
 
LVL 9

Expert Comment

by:MSGeek
ID: 8176595
To make sure your Policy for folder redirection is working, right-click MY Documents and go to properties.  It sould show under the path what you have specified under folder redirection.   Personnally, I map it to their home directory.

There is a Group Policies you can enable to prevent caching of roaming profiles.  System - Logon - Delete cached copies of roaming profiles.
0
 

Author Comment

by:cephal0pod
ID: 8180083
Thanks for your reply,

Yep - folder redirection is working.

I've considered deleting cached copies of roaming profiles, but this wouldn't work in my environment. People need profiles in case they are working offline.

The only thing I want to avoid caching is mydocs. However I cannot find a way to prevent documents created in mydocs on a particular machine from always being available on that machine.

I think I'm going to have to make mydocs available offline. (I can explain to my users why the have no docs when offline, or why they have all their docs. I can't see how to tell 'em that they'll have a random selection of docs, dependent on which computer they created them on... )

Matt

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LVL 9

Accepted Solution

by:
MSGeek earned 240 total points
ID: 8180687
You have a couple of options here, are you dealing with a lot of laptop users.  You could create a different policy for them.  They could have a local account on the laptop and synchronise with the domain when they login.  This opens up some security concerns if the laptop is stolne, unless you are using EFS.
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Expert Comment

by:cempasha
ID: 8595856
This question is still open and getting old. If any of the comment(s) above helped you please accept it as an answer or split the points who ever helped you in this question. Your attention in finalising this question is very much appreciated. Thanks in advance,

****** PLEASE DO NOT ACCEPT THIS AS AN ANSWER ********

- If you would like to close this question and have your points refunded, please post a question in community support area on http://www.experts-exchange.com/Community_Support/ giving the address of this question. Thank you      

Pasha

Cleanup Volunteer


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LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:Computer101
ID: 8601467
A request for deletion or PAQ has been made.  If no response or you feel this is in error, comment.  If no objection, I or another Moderator will handle this question in three days.

Computer101
E-E Admin
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LVL 9

Expert Comment

by:MSGeek
ID: 8602669
chepal0pod should provide his solution for a refund, this question is worthy of being PAQ'd
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LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:Computer101
ID: 8624844
You must provide feedback to MSgeek prior to me handleing

Computer101
E-E Admin
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Expert Comment

by:Chmod
ID: 8670359
A request has been made to change the grade;  The expert feels the current grade does not fit the criteria of the intended
guidelines.  Those guidelines can been seen at http://www.experts-exchange.com/help/Closing.htm#7   If there is no response in 72
hours, I will review this question and grade accordingly..

Chmod
Community Support Moderator @Experts Exchange
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LVL 9

Expert Comment

by:MSGeek
ID: 8670585
Alright Chmod  :)       <I am taking my gloves off and rolling up my sleaves>

The only item I left out here is a detail with regad to EFS.  It is a major pain in the a**!  If your users do not backup their keys and their profile gets corrupt there is nothing you can do to recover those files other than spending a fortune to have them unencrypted!

There is an answer in the following KB http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;302093  You can implement EFS on the laptops and copy files to the server.  The problem with the default behavior in this scenario is the file stays encrpted when moved to the server and the key stays with the laptop (which could be stolen.)  Without a backup key the data is useless.  With the registry edit in the KB I just posted you can change the setting so when the encrypted file is copied from the laptop to the server it is automatically without intervention decrypted.

IMHO..This is a killer way to close this question.  MSGeek
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LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:Computer101
ID: 8671077
MSGeek,

(Taking gloves off also)

As this is my expert area, you are correct.

Duck for the left hook coming.  The EFS is a very complex issue and sometimes goes aver the heads of those that ask.  Sometimes we have to way both sides, but agree with this grade upgrade. Sometimes we have to explain ourselves.

C101

(Good job)
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LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:Computer101
ID: 8671110
Great post btw,

C101
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Expert Comment

by:MSGeek
ID: 8672781
Thanks.  I agree with EFS being a complex issue.  I have seen the effects of poorly implemented EFS and lack of Keys being backed up.   You should read and document everything you can get your hands on before implementing it and have an established practice to back up EFS keys.

Thanks Chmod & Computer101 for all your time.
0
 

Author Comment

by:cephal0pod
ID: 8680328
Morning all,

OK, here's the reason why I gave MSgeek an 'average' kind of grade:

I think what you suggested as an answer was that I could avoid the problems I described by using local profiles rather than roaming ones. This would keep all the mydocs files on the local machine as requested and I could then use a policy to sync those files with the network or to change other settings.

This is a good answer for a situation where the user has only one machine. My question related to a situation where a user logs onto X machines. I wanted to ensure that he would always see the same files in his mydocs. I could do this by creating local profiles on all of the machines and then downloading mydocs each time, but I don't see how that differs from using offline files as I suggested!

So, yeah, points for an fairly good answer, but not the highest grade because I thought that it left parts of the question unanswered...

Matt

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LVL 9

Expert Comment

by:MSGeek
ID: 8683923
Matt.. Thanks.  Having read your last post and re-read your previous posts I am a little unclear (not your fault.)  It seems you want users profiles to be roaming and cached with the exception of the contents of My Documents.  If that is the case and they login off site on a laptop and want to access their documents and they have somehow been removed, how am I as a user going to work??  If you can clarify this point perhaps I can assist further.  MSGeek
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Author Comment

by:cephal0pod
ID: 8701377
Hi,

Msgeek, I think the key thing is this:

* If my user is working offline and can see all his my documents, then brilliant :)
* If they can see none of their mydocs, then that's fairly OK as well - I can explain this to them and find a workaround.

The real pain is if they're offline and can see *some* of their mydocs. So for example, John Smith wants to do some work on the trainride home. He is in the office and checks in his mydocs and sees that he has most of the stuff he wants already there. He  copies over a couple of extra files and leaves the office. On the train (so offline) he goes to mydocs and sees maybe 40% of the files that were there when online... How shitty is that?  

Anywise, this isn't  really a big issue, and I don't reckon I'm going to find an elegant solution, so I reckon we should call it quits on this one!

Cheers for your help though :)

Matt
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LVL 9

Expert Comment

by:MSGeek
ID: 8704537
No worries..

One thing you could try is using xcopy to synchronize the folders instead of offline files feature.  With the included switches you can recurse and copy at login anly those files from the laptop My Documents that have changed (have the archive atrribute on) to the network and run a batch file doing the same when they are ready to pack up and head out.  It is pretty fast once you have the bulk of the documents moved over.   It wouldn't work on a roaming profile.  You could always use local profiles as mentioned earlier and then have mandatory roaming profiles for select users.  It could get ugly.   I'll leave it at that unless this sparks something on your end.  MSGeek
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