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Why are my DFS replicated folders not replicating?  Or are they?!

Posted on 2009-12-28
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Hello!  
In our network we've got two servers, both AD domain controllers.  Server A hosts the vast majority of the services - DNS, dhcp, exchange, etc.  Server B is a DC but otherwise only a fileserver.  This was done to alleviate some of the strain on server A when large files are copied (this would nearly completely lock up quickbooks for the users, the other main function of server A).  My solution to this was to configure a namespace on server A that contained four folders pointing at Server B.  The namespace works perfectly, haven't had any issue.  The problem is I need to have the files somewhere on Server A to be backed up nightly.  I have tried several replication group setups and while I can get the Topology successfully verified notice and Event Viewer shows connections no files seem to replicate.  I've read that increasing the staging area folder size helps (especially since there are some huge files) but I've got it over twice the size of the largest files and still no go.

I'm also assuming the replicated folders and files will be browsable - I got it to make the root of the replicated folders on one attempt (It created a "Share" folder where there was none) but it was never populated.

The only other things I can think to mention are that the folders on Server A aren't shared (so people don't yank files off of it) and the local paths are different on each machine.  Also, Server A is 2008 SBS and Server B is 2003 R2.  DFS Rep and RPC are running on both properly and they can browse each other, just not replicate.  Please let me know what other info I've left out!
Thanks
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Question by:tganus
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Expert Comment

by:Rob Williams
ID: 26131743
Are you trying to replicate the QuickBooks files? If so to the best of my knowledge you cannot replicate most database files such as QuickBooks. Works great for files such as Word, Excel, Etc.
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by:tganus
ID: 26132559
No, the quickbooks files are separate.   These are static files (ISOs and install files and things) mostly.
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by:tganus
ID: 26133370
Actually to clarify, the quickbooks files are on Server A only - server B only hosts select files that needed infrequently, but too large to have opened and copied during business hours.
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Expert Comment

by:Cris Hanna
ID: 26137670
Is Server A, a Small Business Server?
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by:tganus
ID: 26142044
Yes, the server is Server 2008 Small Business Server.
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tganus earned 0 total points
ID: 26149850
Well, I believe I have found the root issue.  
After giving up on my manual replication configuration I decided to do it the "easy way" and simply add a target folder in the namespace shared from Server A.  When this asked if I wanted to make a rep group I said yes, and it did it all for me - except it still didn't work!  On further trouble shooting, namely with the Create Diagnostic report, I found everything was trying to work but of all things the firewall was blocking access to/from the RPC server.  I opened up the firewall (not having the ports to use I simply disabled it) and suddenly everything is communicating and files are appearing on the newly repped folders.  I hope this is of some use to someone someday!

Oh, here's a link to the technet info for DFS:  http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc782417(WS.10).aspx
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