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Roaming profiles and folder redirection

By hanekwj ·
I am a little confused.

What is the fuss about in this article:

http://techrepublic.com.com/5208-11189-0.html?forumID=3&threadID=193354&start=0

I am thinking of implementing roaming profiles along with folder redirection.

The roaming because one of our sales people or technicians sometimes has to man the switch board. The roaming profile is alo so that i can quota manage the users as all users use company equipment and therefore they sould not store music or movies on the devices. So i restrict the size of the folder in \\server\share\FOLDER ("username")
Is this sound?

The folder redirection, to ease the backup process. I also want to quota manage this folder because we have a central or "Public" folder where all business data should be stored. The redirected folder can be quota managed because the user should have very little personal data, perhaps a few photos to feel more at home
Is this sound? What about the .pst file?


I am currently testing it in a "lab" environment and i dont see the problem as described in the article mentioned.

I my test machine uses Windows XP Pro and my server is MS Windows 2003 (i will migrate to Server 2008 at a later stage and to Windows 7 Pro sooner)

When i unplug the network cable of the machine though i get a message from windows saying that i am offline but i should not worry because when i log onto the network again all changes made will be updated "syncronized" automatically.

I havent set anything special on either the server nor the worksation.
Will it be this easy in Server 2008/Win7?

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Hi hanekwj

by Seaweedd In reply to Roaming profiles and fold ...

As a general rule, try to avoid implementing roaming profiles. They're the biggest cause of support time that I know and can grow to gargantuan proportions. Use them sparingly and only for your hot deskers. Local profiles are the preferred option.

Redirect your users' My Documents folder to their home area which will be on a network share. Can be done either manually or with Group Policy. Then you can back them all up in one go.

Offline files are straightforward to set up and will synchronise to the current version when you either log on, log off or both.

If you must use a .pst file put it in the user's home area where it will again be backed up. Cap your user's mailboxes to a reasonable size and stick to it for all users without exception, including senior managers. Educate your users to be ruthless with email retention. Configure Outlook to run in cached mode, you'll get less complaints.

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Ok, but...

by hanekwj In reply to Hi hanekwj

So you have a roaming profile and that roaming profile has its "My Documents" "Application data" and "Desktop" redirected, which in essence makes it no longer part of that roaming profile, what is in the profile that will make it so large in size?

And i understand that people say the roaming profile becomes corrupt, but if all the vital data is redirected, would you net be able to simply delete the roaming profile, and then when the user logs in the data will be restored due to the redirection?

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So ...

by Seaweedd In reply to Ok, but...

There are two separate issues here. Assuming that your users are saving their docs in My Documents, that's the part that needs redirecting - My Computer, My Documents, right click, Properties, in Target specify network location.
If a profile has become corrupt it's easier in the long run to rename the local and server based portions and get the user to log back on/off thereby creating a new one. You'll probably need to copy across the contents of the Favourites and Desktop folders.
Profiles grow naturaly in size over time. Take a look at one and you'll see what I mean. The two biggest culprits are the Outlook.ost file, and the Temporary Internet Files folder, which incidentally doesn't 'roam'.

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