Distributed File System (DFS)
The Distributed File System (DFS) allows files and directories in various places to be combined into one directory tree. Only Windows 2000 Servers can contain DFS root directories and they can have only one.
- The permissions of shared folders that are part of the DFS are still the same.
- Shares with important information can be replicated to several servers providing fault tolerance.
- The DFS root must be created first.
- DFS root - A shared directory that can contain other shared directories, files, DFS links, and other DFS roots. One root is allowed per server. Types of DFS roots:
- Stand alone DFS root - Not published in Active Directory, cannot be replicated, and can be on any Windows 2000 Server. This provides no fault tolerance with the DFS topology stored on one computer.
A DFS can be accessed using the following syntax:
- Domain DFS root - It is published in Active Directory, can be replicated, and can be on any Windows 2000 Server. Files and directories must be manually replicated to other servers or Windows 2000 must be configured to replicate files and directories. Configure the domain DFS root, then the replicas when configuring automatic replication. Links are automatically replicated. There may be up to 31 replicas. Domain DFS root directories can be accessed using the following syntax:
- DFS link - A pointer to another shared directory. There can be up to 1000 DFS links for a DFS root.
DFS administration is done on the Administrative Tool, "Distributed File System". This tool is on all Windows 2000 Server computers, and Windows 2000 Professional computers that have the ADMINPAK installed.
- Windows 2000 Server
- Windows 2000 Professional
- Windows NT 4.0 or later Server and Workstation
- Windows 95 and Windows 98 with DFS client software. (No access to DFS links on NetWare servers).
The File Replication Service (FRS) can used to replicate DFS shares automatically.