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DFS-R and Active Directory "Client Awareness" RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hello,

    I am working with a DFS infrastructure and have come across this statement in an old Redmond Mag blog:

    "DFS uses the "client awareness" feature of Active Directory to locate DFS servers closest to the user."

    What I am trying figure out is how this is supposed to work as I can find no reference to it out on the Intertubes.  I gather a user would access a DFS replicated share and would connect to the "nearest" server holding the replica. 

    My question is, how does AD determine the nearest server?  It makes complete sense that it would do this, but I would like to know more about the how.

    Wednesday, May 13, 2020 12:19 PM

Answers

  • Hi,

    DFS uses Active Directory (AD) site awareness, each site within AD has a cost, the clients will communicate to the site which has the lowest site cost by default.

    Example of the default referral properties of a DFS Namespace:

    A referral is an ordered list of targets that a client computer receives from a domain controller or namespace server when the user accesses a namespace root or folder with targets. After the client receives the referral, the client attempts to access the first target in the list. If the target is not available, the client attempts to access the next target. Targets on the client's site are always listed first in a referral. Targets outside of the client's site are listed according to the ordering method.

    More information here:
    https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-server/storage/dfs-namespaces/set-the-ordering-method-for-targets-in-referrals

    Best regards,
    Leon


    Blog: https://thesystemcenterblog.com LinkedIn:

    • Marked as answer by Ward Galanis Wednesday, May 13, 2020 5:34 PM
    Wednesday, May 13, 2020 2:32 PM

All replies

  • Hi,

    DFS uses Active Directory (AD) site awareness, each site within AD has a cost, the clients will communicate to the site which has the lowest site cost by default.

    Example of the default referral properties of a DFS Namespace:

    A referral is an ordered list of targets that a client computer receives from a domain controller or namespace server when the user accesses a namespace root or folder with targets. After the client receives the referral, the client attempts to access the first target in the list. If the target is not available, the client attempts to access the next target. Targets on the client's site are always listed first in a referral. Targets outside of the client's site are listed according to the ordering method.

    More information here:
    https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-server/storage/dfs-namespaces/set-the-ordering-method-for-targets-in-referrals

    Best regards,
    Leon


    Blog: https://thesystemcenterblog.com LinkedIn:

    • Marked as answer by Ward Galanis Wednesday, May 13, 2020 5:34 PM
    Wednesday, May 13, 2020 2:32 PM
  • Thanks a lot, I was searching for "client awareness" and was not sure of the proper nomenclature given the sparse results.  I'll take your answer and make sure I fully understand it.
    Wednesday, May 13, 2020 5:34 PM