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Folder redirection and Sync for desktops

Posted on 2013-11-05
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Last Modified: 2013-11-26
Hello, I have a site that has a windows 2008r2 server for a DC and a windows 2008r2 database/file server.  I have a mix of windows xp and windows 7 desktops, mostly windows xp.

When I set this up I configured the network to redirect "my documents" to a shared folder so all work would be kept on the server.   I also redirected the desktop to the server.

Most of the windows xp desktops sync everytime I log off and that does not seem practical.  If I have the desktop and document folders on the file server I don't think it should have to sync.

My question, what is the best practice way to have this configured?  Should it sync?  Any recommendations on production experience would be appreciated.  Please no "theory".
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Question by:tucktech
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LVL 22

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by:Nick Rhode
Nick Rhode earned 300 total points
ID: 39624840
It really all depends on your environment.  With desktops typically no you would turn it off because they are not going anywhere and as for laptops and mobile users it would be on.  But if you wanted a little extra failsafe in case the file server were to go down the desktops would have access to the offline files.  It is really up to you but for desktops I usually turn it off.
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by:slimpckins28
slimpckins28 earned 300 total points
ID: 39624847
the sync is probabaly the offline file sync.  Go to control panel, Folder options, uncheck enable offline files.

This is what was happening at a school i admin.  Disabled that, then files are kept soley on the server.
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Skyler Kincaid earned 600 total points
ID: 39624875
Are they all desktops that stay in the office?

If so you need to disable offline files via Group Policy. When you enable Folder Redirection, offline files is enabled by default for redirected folders.

If they are desktops I would recommend disabling offline files for those machines. I always created a seperate GPO called "Disable Offline Files" and here are the settings you will need to change:

Computer Configuration > Policies > Administrative Templates > Network > Offline Files and double click on “Allow of Disallow use of the Offline Files feature” and disable it.

Follow the same process to disable offline files for the “Enable Offline Files” policy by disabling it.

Like the new GPO to your computers and it will disable offline files. This will stop the sync. If you have laptops you will want to make sure that you change the "Enable Offline Files" to enabled, setup a new GPO with that setting and link it to the laptops.
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Author Closing Comment

by:tucktech
ID: 39678350
Thank you for your solutions.  As I have many customers I agree it does depend on the environment.  I have moved to the idea that if it is a desktop to NOT resync and to only allow this for laptops.
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