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Possible to mount NFS location as a drive letter and index it with Windows???

Posted on 2013-01-11
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Hello experts,

I have a heck of a situation that I have been unable to find anything on the internet about what I'm trying to do. We recently got a new NetApp SAN and wish to use an exported NFS share for our user directories. However, no thanks to MICROSOFT, it is impossible to add a UNC share to the documents library in Windows. Windows can only index drives it sees locally. I have been able to have this work successfully by creating an iSCSI LUN on the Netapp, but when I browse to it in Windows it shows the LUN as one big empty file.

I want to utilize NetApp's snapshot functionality, but this seems impossible to do unless we re-educate all of our users to use their home drive instead of the Documents redirection which is what they're used to currently. Should I just abandon this idea, or look into using Shadow Copies in Windows?

Thanks for any help or assistance!
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Question by:FirstCap
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LVL 6

Expert Comment

by:SebastianAbbinanti
ID: 38768150
You can assign an NFS Mount a drive letter in windows.

From the command prompt
c:\mount \\server\share drive-letter

There are other options available too. For more info, check this out http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc754350.aspx

Thanks,
S.
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by:FirstCap
ID: 38768515
I know there's a lot to getting that command to work. So far, everything I've tried results in Network Error 53. But, my efforts are in vain anyways if once I did get it to mount, then I would still be unable to add the drive to the index for the sake of Documents folder redirection. Do you or anyone know if it is possible to index an NFS location in this way?

Dang you Microsoft...
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Accepted Solution

by:
SebastianAbbinanti earned 750 total points
ID: 38768678
I beleive the indexing requires NTFS / CIFS to work. I'm not entirely sure though.

Trying moniting the drive as an iSCSI device. You can use the iSCSI Intiator that comes with Windows. Then Mount the device, formatt it as NTFS, and you should be good to go. I recommend using GPT over MBR to keep the disks aligned.

Thanks,
S.
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Assisted Solution

by:FilipZahradnik
FilipZahradnik earned 750 total points
ID: 38769478
ONTAP allows you to share the same volume over NFS and CIFS at the same time. It becomes a little interesting when permissions are involved, but it is entire possible to translate permissions between UNIX and NTFS. If permissions are not of concern, just add a CIFS share to the volume that's already exported over NFS.
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by:FirstCap
ID: 38774370
Thanks for the info everyone. I have opted to go the iSCSI route.
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