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Remote LAN tips - browsing remote shares

By wbarker ·
I have a network in the US and a network in India that are connected by firewall/firewall VPN.

Users are seeing very slow response times when they try to access network shares accross this great distance. I have pointed a sniffer at this traffic and I see a huge number of back-and-forth communication for relatively trivial actions (the order of 60 round trips just to highlight a file in Windows Explorer, taking about a minute).

These are Windows XP machines accessing shares using network neighborhood browsing to locate files.

Does anyone know of a way to reduce network traffic for simple share browsing? I think I once heard of some way to cache directory structure - does anyone know how to do that?

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by Joseph Moore In reply to Remote LAN tips - browsin ...

NetBIOS over TCP/IP is very slow over WAN links, since Windows is very chatty. This is just how it works.
I would suggest that, instead of using Network Neighborhood to do this, that you try FTP instead. It is cleaner, faster, less overhead, and, IMHO, will work better for your environment.

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by curlergirl In reply to Remote LAN tips - browsin ...

One simple way, although not everyone likes to do it, is to use mapped drives rather than letting users browse through the network. Mapped drives will give your users much quicker response time than browsing because you have a direct path to your resource. You would want to create mapped drives to the lowest level that will give your users access to all the files/folders that they regularly use. And, of course, you might have to create more than one mapped drive. Using a login script to refresh the drive mappings each time the user logs in is also a good idea. Hope this helps!

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