One significant issue that organize overseers/sysadmins face is concluding how to share data, records and imparting to end clients and how to discover the share.
For example, if you share a folder called IT_Data Documents on server ‘X’, how do you make sure your users will find the folder and the files within it?
The users have to know the server name and the share folder or file name. This can be a huge problem if you have hundreds of share folders/files on multiple servers. If you want to have multiple copies of the folder called IT_Data Documents for fault tolerance and load balancing, the problem becomes even more complicated.
What is distributed file system ?
Distributed File System (DFS) in Windows Server 2012 R2 offers a simplified way for users to access geographically dispersed folders/files. DFS allows you to set up a tree structure of virtual directories that allows users to connect to shared folders throughout the entire network. DFS supports stand-alone DFS namespaces, those with one host server, and domain-based namespaces that have multiple host servers and high availability.
Advantages of DFS
These are the few of the best advantages of setting up a DSF server in your enviroment.
- When a user views this virtual tree, the shared folders appear to be located on a single machine.
- Simplified Data Migration distributed file system gives you the ability to move data from one location to another without the user needing to know the physical location of the data. Because the users do not need to know the physical location of the shared data, administrators can simply move data from one location to another.
- Security Integration: Administrators do not need to configure additional security for the DFS shared folders. The shared folders use the NTFS and shared folder permissions that an administrator has already assigned when the share was set up.
- Access-Based Enumeration (ABE) : This DFS feature (disabled by default) displays only the files and folders that a user has permissions to access. If a user does not have access to a folder, Windows hides the folder from the user’s DFS view. This feature is not active if the user is viewing the files and folders locally
- DFS uses the Windows Server file replication service to copy changes between replicated targets. Users can modify files stored on one target, and the file replication service propagates the changes to the other designated targets. The service preserves the most recent change to a document or files.