how to set up DFS in Windows 2003?

Posted on 2011-04-20
Last Modified: 2012-05-11
Hey all,

     We have this issue we need to deal with, at least, short-term, by setting up DFS between two servers (that are Windows 2003 SP2, so they keep some file shares in sync. We have reasons that we cannot yet upgrade to 2008 R2 server, which is more what we've been used to in recent years.

As we are under pressure about this, and want to make sure we do this right... and our 2003 stuff is a little rusty in this area, admittedly... does anyone know of some good how-to documents for setting up DFS in 2003 SP2 (not W2003 R2)? I think points are deserving for those who can help us overcome this challenge with some direction. Thanks in advance!
Question by:gs-rho
    LVL 12

    Assisted Solution

    Here is a link with some information and how to install and configure dfs replication in win2003

    and other link in configure and use
    LVL 12

    Expert Comment

    LVL 41

    Accepted Solution

    It sounds like you DO NAT have 2003 R2. The non R2 version of 2003 only has FRS; it doesn't have DFS-R that Windows 2003 R2, 2008 and 2008 R2 have. FRS has lots of issues. To see how to configure it and it's limitations, see

    I suggest that you consider other alternatives to FRS such as robocopy.

    How to configure FRS:

    Author Comment

    Kevinsieh, I was realizing there was an issue there when I started going through Serchlop's links. It is true, we are dealing with Win 2003, not Win 2003 R2. I recall concerns with FRS.

    It seems I'm probably left with the alternatives of either using Robocopy, as you suggest or upgrading the servers to Win 2003 R2.

    I remember the R2 installation was like an add-on, but I think there were Active Directory Schema upgrades... and combined with the fact that one of these servers has a small Exchange 2003 installation... this is probably going to get to the point where we don't want to go right now.

    I am not familiar with Robocopy beyond knowing basically what it does. I don't know if you would prefer that I open up a new question if I were to ask you about it... but I am left wondering if Robocopy can be implemented to keep two shares synced, like DFS. I would need to find some documentation on it, one way or another, in order to implement it this way. I'm trying to avoid huge efforts for something that is a stop-gap to get us through a couple months, but still very necessary.

    Author Comment


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