Recommended settings for Windows7 Roaming Profiles

rtod2
rtod2 used Ask the Experts™
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We have 802.11G on our router.  We have two (2) desktops, and three (3) laptops.  Most of them are Vista today until I can find the time and patience to migrate them all to Windows 7.  I understand that Windows 7 has a sort of make-shift domain controller that will allow for something similar to roaming profiles in a corporate environment.  I would like to set that up.  The desktop acting as the unmovable host or controller will be different from the XP desktop machine that we wish to house all of our files for the time being.

What are the best options to choose during the Windows7 fresh install process on the host PC to make this happen?
What are the best options to choose during the Windows7 fresh install process for the remaining PCs?

1. Desktop (first to install Windows7) host pc for network
2. Desktop (XP last to install Windows7) file storage
3. Laptop (XP currently, second to install to Windows7)
4. Laptop (XP currently)
5. Laptop (XP currently)
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Commented:
W7s Network Setup Wizard is pretty good. Just choose the type of Network you are wanting, and any info as it asks for it.
You might want to stay away from the HOMEGROUP thing for now (if it asks). I don't know if it will interfere with a Domain setup or not.

Author

Commented:
I don't have a domain setup.  That's what I was thinking the HOMEGROUP thing did.  It acts a makeshift domain controller right, for home users?  That's what I was trying to figure out.
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Commented:
The way I understand HOMEGROUP, it is just a fancy peer-to-peer, optimized for W7 (Vista?) systems only.
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Author

Commented:
So how can I set one of my machines as a domain controller?
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Commented:
That I can't help you with. I have no experience with Domains.    : /
Windows workstations are Active Directory Aware and designed to be a member of Active Directory.  They can function as Browse Masters, but not Domain Controllers.

As Coral47 stated, Homegroup is merely a [repackaged] fancy peer-to-peer network.  It is designed to simplify peer-to-peer networking for less experienced persons.

Author

Commented:
I see.  OK, very good.  I would love to see a flowchart of the different sharing options in Windows7.  Do you know if anything like that exists?
Here's an article from Microsoft on File Sharing in Windows 7 - I hope it helps guide you.  Otherwise you may consider Windows Small Business Server which greatly increases your organizational functionality at a semi-reasonable price.
http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/Windows7/file-sharing-essentials

Author

Commented:
That link is a fantastic explaination of what home groups do !!  Thank you for that.  Will home groups allow me to have a "roaming desktop"?  Meaning that when my wife logs into my computer, she gets her desktop, and her network file shares?

Would I have to go to Small Business Server for that?

Commented:
To the best of my knowledge, what you are looking for IS NOT available in Windows 7.  The closest you might get to it would be to use local policy and registry hacks to do folder re-direction, but this is time consuming, brings it's own set of problems, and can't be done if the user account already exists on the computer.

As previously stated, you are much farther ahead to simply purchase and install WIndows small business server.

Author

Commented:
OK, so does Windows Small Business server act as a domain controller capable of providing roaming profiles for the remaining Windows7 desktop computers?

Commented:
Yes.  You'll get roaming profiles, polices, folder redirection, file/printer sharing, e-mail, etc..

I'd recommend a little time spent on Google regarding roaming profiles and folder redirection.  By itself, roaming profiles can be a performance problem.  used with folder redirection, not so much.

Author

Commented:
OK, so to kick this off initially (roaming profiles after the fact), what special set-up parameters do I need to begin installing Windows Small Business server?

Author

Commented:
??  What settings are needed to set up SBC to deploy roaming profiles?

Author

Commented:
I still need to know specifically what settings to choose to set up SBC to deploy roaming profiles?
Commented:
There is no one set of specific settings.  Creating and executing the plan for rolling out roaming profiles is probably outside the scope of this board.  Please go back and read the links I provided earlier, or pay a consultant for a couple hours of their time.

Author

Commented:
this was not adequately answered

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