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Redirected My Documents is causing sloooow logins on any new workstations

Posted on 2006-11-29
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Last Modified: 2010-04-18
Hi

I have successfully redirected folders etc including my documents for all users on the network.  The users are all in one group and the redirection is being handled by a Group Policy.

When a user creates a document it is stored on the local machine and only gets transferred to the server at logoff. Is there a (hopefully simple) way to have the my documents store directly on the server?

There is no need in this case to ever have documents stored locally as no users ever work offline from the server.

Thanks

Don
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Question by:Summer67
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12 Comments
 

Expert Comment

by:jayglass
ID: 18039683
Unfortunately, if this is the way you have to have things setup, you are going to run into problems with speed. Every time each user logs on, their entire profile is downloaded to their local machine. Depending on the size of their my doc's (ie 2 gb), this can take a very long time. Multiply this by the number of users you have and it makes for a very busy network. IN addition, everytime a user logs off, their entire profile (including my docs) is uploaded to the server, again increasing network traffic.  If at all possible I would avoid having users storing my docs on the server, but if it's a must, beef up your server, perhaps have a coupel of servers that can share the load.
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LVL 38

Expert Comment

by:Hypercat (Deb)
ID: 18039752
The entire profile is NOT downloaded each time you log on or off in a Win2K3/WinXP environment.  The profile folders are synchronized, not copied, so only changes are copied between the server and workstation, after the initial copy process is done. Besides which, this is a separate issue from folder redirction.  My Documents redirection, by definition, moves the My Documents folder to the server. I think what you may have done is to confuse roaming profiles with a folder redirection.  These are not the same thing.  Please confirm whether you have actually set up group policies to redirect the My Documents folder to a different location.  This is done through the User section of the group policy settings:  User Configuration/Windows Settings/Folder Redirection.  If this is not what you have done, then it is what you want to do to accomplish your goal. If this is what you have done, then it is not working properly if documents are getting saved locally.

Hope this helps!
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LVL 25

Expert Comment

by:mikeleebrla
ID: 18039776
i agree with hypercat,,, it sounds like you may have setup roaming profiles.

>>Is there a (hopefully simple) way to have the my documents store directly on the server?
sure, just point the home folder for each user to the server (\\servername\sharename\username\) thats it
also make sure that every users' 'my documents' is pointed to that same place

now every user will be saving their documents directly to the server (as they should).... a user's documents shouldn't be stored locally AT ALL.



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Author Comment

by:Summer67
ID: 18039867
Hi hypercat and jayglass

I have redirection set up in Gropu Policy Editor as shown here:

http://www.bizlist.ca/redirectionproblem.htm

The roaming profiles are working well.

I have heard of  a setting of "offline folders" or some such thing that can be set up in Group policyy? Or any other solution for that matter.

Don

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Author Comment

by:Summer67
ID: 18039890
I should also add that the usersgo to different workstations and do not regularly work at any one station in the building.  They can, and do, log on to any of the existing workstations.
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Author Comment

by:Summer67
ID: 18039902
RE: also make sure that every users' 'my documents' is pointed to that same place

And,  by "pointing" do you mean redirected?

Sorry for all the quick added comments

Don
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LVL 25

Expert Comment

by:mikeleebrla
ID: 18039946
>>And,  by "pointing" do you mean redirected
redirection is one method. you can statically point them their at the PC level as well.

0
 
LVL 38

Expert Comment

by:Hypercat (Deb)
ID: 18039960
That link you posted shows the correct instructions.  So, it sounds like the redirection is not working properly.  Look in the event viewer on one of the workstations and see if there are Userenv event warnings or errors in the Application log.  My guess is that there is a permissions issue with the location of the redirected folders.  The one thing I can think of off-hand that is a very common source of errors is the requirement that the user has to have ownership of the folder to are redirecting to.  Most times, this ownership is given to the Administrator automatically.  What you need to do is go to the properties of each folder and change the ownership to the individual user.  Basically, the ownership has to be:

User - Full Control
User - Owner

And then any other accounts (Administrator, System, etc.) that may need access for administrative or backup purposes.

Deb

And no, you don't want to use offline folders - that's something completely different.  
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LVL 38

Expert Comment

by:Hypercat (Deb)
ID: 18039987
Correction - typing too fast...NTFS permissions have to be:

User - Full Control
User - Owner

Then, permissions can be given to other accounts for admin/backup purposes.
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Author Comment

by:Summer67
ID: 18040864
Hi

Ownership appears to be correct.  

It is my understanding that, after logging on to a workstation, if redirection is applied properly, the folder properties for "My Documents" should point to the server and not to C:\Documents and Setings....

Is this correct?

One real issue is that if the workstation crashes, and the documents have not been synchronized it appears as if the work will be lost.  

Is there a better solutuin than the one I am trying to implement?

PS - thanks for all of your help as this is going along.  Your assistance and knowledge  is greatly appreciated.

Don
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LVL 38

Accepted Solution

by:
Hypercat (Deb) earned 500 total points
ID: 18041355
Yes, you are correct - if the redirection is working, when you bring up the properties of the folder, you have a tab called "Target" that shows the server location of the folder.  By the same token, if you go look in the Documents and Settings folder in the user's profile, there will be no My Documents folder there.  This illustrates, and again I want to emphasize, that there is NO synchronization.  The documents are NOT copied back and forth between the server and the workstation - they are saved only to the server (target) location.  This is exactly what you want and the purpose of folder redirection - the docs are always on the server so that they can be backed up and a workstation crash doesn't affect them.
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Author Comment

by:Summer67
ID: 18042562
Thanks to everyone for your help on resolving this issue.

I finally got it figured out.  Your advice on this was great and it was only my lack of understanding that got in the way, but with folks like you in my corner it sure makes things easier.

I had trouble dividing the points as both of you, hypercat and mikeleebrla provided information that was very useful and did get me through this impasse.

So in true Canadian fashion I'll sit on the fence and go 50/50 :-)

Again Thanks!! and all the best to all of you
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