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DFS Setup

Posted on 2014-03-23
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Last Modified: 2014-03-25
I want to set up DFS between two offices so that the files in Office A replicate to Office B and Office B to Office A. Office A has some 300GB of files and Office B has some 100GB.

Setting up DFS and then just letting the files replicate will take too long, especially if I limit the available bandwidth, so I was wondering if I can take a copy of the respective source files and then take to the respective office and copy the files over to the DFS folders and then start the replication.

Would this work?
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Question by:TMS
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Expert Comment

by:gmbaxter
ID: 39949121
Why don't you bring the two servers together in one location for the initial replication?
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Author Comment

by:TMS
ID: 39949260
Well, that is an option but not exactly a great solution as that means downtime of services.
Are you saying DFS can't read the location and compare?  I've not really done much reading on this so maybe what on suggest is the only option.
Could I not create a local replication and then move that folder?
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by:Mahesh
ID: 39949881
What is the network bandwidth between two locations ?

Use below process to prestige data on destination server and then setup DFSR
1.Back up the data by using the Backup program. You can back up to tape or to a file.
2.Transfer the backup to the destination server.
3.Restore the backup to the destination server. The hashes that are computed by DFSR for each server should be identical for files that have not changed.

Check below post more information
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/947726

Mahesh.
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Author Comment

by:TMS
ID: 39952009
Thanks Mahesh.

The offices are connected via VDSL's so get about 8mbps upload.  The files are quite slow moving so once set up the demand will be very light.

Can I just robocopy the files or use the third party backup software that I use and just do a mirror backup?
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Mahesh earned 500 total points
ID: 39952549
Robocopy will tends to change Hashes of destination.
You need to use windows server backup which is a native feature of windows 2008 and take backup of data on external drive as indicated in above KB article
Then restore data on destination server with windows server backup only

If you want to use 3rd party backup solution, then 1st try 3rd party backup tool and copying some data from source and restore it on destination and check the hashes at both locations by using dfsrdiag filehash command which is provided in above KB article
If Data hashes are matched, you can use 3rd party backup tool or else you don't have any option other than native windows backup software

You do have to install DFSN and DFSR on destination server 1st so that DFSRDIAG tool will be available for you

Do not forget to make complete backup of DFS shares prior to deploy DFS replication as  if in case any thing goes wrong and you lose data, you will have data backup copy intact
Also always set replication from source server (not replica server) and set replication from your source location to destination to avoid data loss

Mahesh.
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Author Comment

by:TMS
ID: 39952559
Mahesh,
Thanks for the clarification.  I'll speak with BackupAssist, the backup vendor first to check but otherwise do as you have detailed.
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