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DFS Replication Issue Server Offline for Several Months


I need advice how to deal with a DFS Replication site it has been offline for 5 month. Starting back the server, all the data is there (5 month old). Now in Event Log of the DFS I have this error :

This server has been disconnected from other partners for xxx days, which is longer than the time allowed by the MaxOfflineTimeInDays parameter (60). DFS Replication considers the data in this folder to be stale, and this server will not replicate the folder until this error is corrected.

I have a server currently in the DFS where all the data is accurate. Can I force DFS to replicate from the "Primary Server" into the Server back online ?

We have over 800GBs of data and we want to avoid data lost in the DFS.

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2 Solutions
No MoreCommented:

Is the server DC (which was offline) ?

I would say it's tombstoned and you will need to uninstall DC /DFSR clear data and then install and freshly replicate from Primary server.

Do not try to replicate it by force under any circumstances

Can you provide more detailed information about your infrastructure ?
No MoreCommented:
Also, can you include DFS event ID's from the server, which was offline?

Run DCDIAG /e   or DCDIAG /v /c /e           >output.txt

Run DFSDIAG /testdcs
JF SAuthor Commented:
Hi David,

This is the infrastructure

No it's not the DC.

We have currently :
One DC (Always running)
Data Server with DFS installed (Always running) Primary Server.
Data Server with DFS installed (Remote site A) (Always running) secondary server
Data Server with DFS installed (Remote Site B) Offline 5 month. **** This one is the problem.

Thanks for your feedback
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No MoreCommented:
Primary server is DFS root target folder ?

You could remove DFSR from server(siteB) clear all DFS data
(Data are stored in c:\system volume you need to take ownership get rights to remove all DFS data)

Remove/disable (siteB) target folder from primary server DFSR

Reinstall DFSR  

And then use Robocopy GUI to copy files from root target folder to target folder (site B)
JF SAuthor Commented:
Hi I change the value MaxOfflineTimeInDays for 180 days, do you think this will work or I have a risk of corrupted data ?

Thanks for your input.
No MoreCommented:
Did you run ?

c;\>wmic.exe /namespace:\\root\microsoftdfs path DfsrMachineConfig set MaxOfflineTimeInDays=180

If you did that, you will have to do that on every server

You might get lucky and sync might fix it
Adam BrownSr Solutions ArchitectCommented:
The Content Freshness protection method David is talking about should be configured with a longer date *before* this issue occurs. Once it happens, you have to rebuild the DFSr database on the server. https://blogs.technet.microsoft.com/askds/2009/11/18/implementing-content-freshness-protection-in-dfsr/ explains all of this. You'll want to follow the instructions in the "Recovering DFSR from Content Protection" section, which explains how to initiate a forced rebuild of the replication database on the stale server. Essentially, the steps are to disable the stale server in the DFSr configuration, run a manual replication, then enable the stale server. This will cause a non-authoritative replication to the stale server, which will cause the server to rebuild its DFS database.
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