Home Folder with Roaming Profile

Posted on 2013-02-07
Last Modified: 2013-02-12
Ok we are looking into creating home folders for our users.  I know how to complete the setup of making the home folder and also folder redirection.  My question is that what is the advantage/disadvantage of doing it with a mapped network drive from another server?  All of our servers or Virtual and my solution was to create a LUN/SAN so that it appeared as a logical drive on the server just as a physical SAN/server would.  In my opinion that is the better option to me than a mapped network drive from another virtual server unless someone can explain different.  I have to pitch this to my network admin who is the one doing the network mapped drive.  Attatched is a screen shot of what I am refering to.
Thanks for your help
Question by:jjchad6231
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LVL 25

Expert Comment

ID: 38866720
The problem is unless you spend a lot of money on a multi-system access file system, your profile is limited to that one server.   It really defeats the purpose of a home directory which you want universally available to you on the network.


Author Comment

ID: 38867902
Can you please explain this a little better to me.  I have had 2 other technicians look at your response and we just don't understand what you mean in your answer.  If you could explain it  I would greatly appreciate it.  I will try to clarify what we are doing also.  We are moving from a NDS environment to an AD environment.  Our users are used to having mapped drives for personal storage.  I know this can be accomplished with a home folder and with folder redirect.  My concern was that with mapping a network drive (shown in screen shot) is that if the map is disconnected for some reason then the setup does not good.  If it appears as a logical drive then there should not be an issue.  I know how it needs to be setup but our network admin does not and need some expert advice on how to convince them that it is easier with a GPO that to manually do it the way they want to.
LVL 25

Assisted Solution

Coralon earned 500 total points
ID: 38870369
Ok, I think I'm getting a better picture of exactly what you are trying to accomplish.  

You do want a standard home drive, which will be a mapped resource.  There are GPO settings to assign the home directory, which work perfectly.  In most windows environments, the 2 most common 'standard' drives are H: and U:

From the server side, you can easily map a LUN to your designated file server for the home directories.  This will work perfectly.. we currently do this ourselves.. Our file server has several LUNS attached as drives for various file servers.  One of them is for user home directories.  That LUN is shared out, and the user home directories are mapped as h: (so.. h: points to \\server\share\%username%, and it is set by policy).

<I am assuming that you would want the mapped home drive to look like drive T: in your picture>

I hope we are getting on the same page?


Author Comment

ID: 38875974
Yes we are and I do understand that the Home Folder will be a mapped drive.  Our network admin has taken an un-used domain server that was going to be used for VDI and using the storage allocated to that server as the home directory location by sharing out the root then manually mapping out a drive to each user.  We do not have a file server that is the sole purpose of providing storage.  He is creating every users folder on that share and then mapping a drive to each users pc instead of allowing a GPO to do this.  We have approx. 500 users that we are migrating over the next few months and this will be very time consuming that way he is starting it.  I need some form of help in helping him understand that there is an easier way to do things.  Also the screen shot is of the DC and the mapped drive is from the VDI server.  My suggestion was to have to DC have a LUN on it and not a networked mapped drive to be configured on another server as to the permissions and such would not reside on the same server.
LVL 25

Accepted Solution

Coralon earned 500 total points
ID: 38878815
He has the *basically* correct idea, but not the fully correct idea. He should not be manually mapping the home directories, he should be doing it by GPO.  

If you don't have a flat out file server to be the home directory storage, then the DC is a decent place for it.

He should create the root directory, set the share permissions to everyone:full.
Then, he should set the NTFS on that root directory with permissions something similar to these:
authenticated users: Read & Create Folder (this folder only)
administrators: Full Control (this folder and subfolders)
Creator Owner:Full Control (subfolders and files only)
Then he should use a GPO to assign the home directories, and map the drive for them.

The net affect is that when the user logs in, the home directory will be created, and they will have full control of the directory.  Then, as you migrate users, you just create their accounts, copy their data, etc..


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