I've been fighting the insane uphill battle with Mac clients using MS Word to save files to Windows Server 2008 for almost a year now. I've tried using a NAS instead but went back to Server 2008.
99% of the problems I'm seeing revolve around Mac OS on the client locking files open even when the file isn't open on the respective client. Windows Server shows files open after they're closed. My assumption is that the client isn't communicating the closure and the server is left in la la land. These issues consist of Word not saving files that you just opened from the server, saving errors (aka you don’t have permission all of a sudden), mysterious corrupt files (one mac can open a word doc fine and the mac next to them gets an error that the very same file is corrupt), inabilities to move/rename/delete files etc.
There are sooooo many problems with Word, Mac OS X and saving to networks I'm out of ideas (lots and lots of people are having this issue and Apple/MS are not being helpful). The only thing we haven't tried is using another Mac as the file server, which leads me to my quest for advice.
We're going to try and use a Mac Mini to host the Word files for 5 users.
The question/advice needed is this: which file sharing protocol should be used?
All the Mac clients are running 10.8.5 or 10.7. The new Mac Mini will be downgraded to 10.8.5 and will have the "server" app added to it.
Should we be using AFP or SMB or CIFS or something else?
The hope is that using a Mac to serve the files may help.