How successful are roaming profiles and laptops?

We have a highly mobile work force with people moving from one spot on the globe to another. Some users may not even be at a "Real" office location for months. One of the problems we have are when laptops are lost, stolen, or broken and we have to try and retrieve the users data and get them back to "their" config. This seems like a perfect opportunity for Roaming profiles but I am not sure how logging in and out would work over slow WAN links and VPN connections. Our users wont tolorate slow boot\login times and shutdowns while in or out of the office. So what's the word out there? Does it really work?  We run a Win2k Domain with XP machines.
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there is an option to detect slow wan links, which will decrease logon times. however if you want to sync offline files your looking at a long disconnect time..

You should have their "my documents" redirected to a server which will only have slow access times when loading or saving a specific file. This is a great backup measure. its always nice to be able to recover something when they need it bad.

I work with Doctors (God complex).. fortunately our network is not slow but "slow" can be a relative term.. if your trying to create a backup plan, roaming profiles is a great feature. that could be your selling point.

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You may find these a help to decide if using roaming profiles is for you
Who Uses Roaming Profiles?

Users feedback
What is a roaming user profile?

There will always be to some degree roaming profiles issues, caused from
A user profile does not unload.
• A roaming profile does not reconcile.
• You reach the registry size limit (RSL).
However there is a fix now
Microsoft User Profile Hive Cleanup Service (UPHClean). UPHClean monitors the computer while Windows is unloading user profiles and forces resources that are open to close. Therefore, the computer can unload and reconcile user profiles.;en-us;837115

Roaming Profiles and Multiple Users

hope this better preps you.
Regards Merete
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Windows XP

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