Whats New in Windows Server – Longhorn – Offline Files

For anyone who has fought – and in my case given up trying – to use offline files, Longhorn seems to have made some major improvements.  I use RoboCopy for all of my synching because it lives up to its name “Robust” but easy its not!  Here are some of the highlights, for more info check out the attachment:

·      You can transition the Offline Files status to “online” without waiting for all cached files to be synchronized. For example, if you have Offline Files configured on a notebook computer and have been working offline, you can connect to the network and change your working status to “online” without waiting for all of your Offline Files to completely synchronize.

·      If you have open file handles on your local computer when connecting to the network, the open file handles will be converted to file handles on the server without requiring you to close the files. For example, you could have a file open in Microsoft Word when you reconnect to the network. Rather than being prompted to close the file before synchronizing, the file handle will transition to the server and you can keep the file open in Word without issue.

·      In Microsoft Windows® XP, if a single file cannot be synchronized then the entire server is considered offline and no shares on the server can be accessed, whether these shares are cached in local store or not. In “Longorn” versions of Windows operating systems, file availability is determined at the individual file level. If a single file is unavailable, yet other files in the same share and other shares are available, those files will still be available online. This provides better interoperation with the Distributed File System (DFS).

·      Sync Manager is improved in Windows Server “Longhorn.” New features include reporting synchronization errors, listing the files with errors, and providing multiple options for resolving synchronization conflicts when files have been modified offline.

·      The property page for any file or folder has an Offline Files tab that provides status and allows control of the offline status of the file or folder. To access this page, right click a file or folder, click Properties, and then click the Offline Files tab. Offline Files can be enabled by policy on the client. A Group Policy object (GPO) can be set to create a share or to make a path available offline. If Folder Redirection (Intellimirror) has been deployed, then Offline Files are automatically enabled. Folder Redirection applies the GPO to the My Documents folder after redirecting the folder to a server.

Steve Richards

I'm retired from work as a business and IT strategist. now I'm travelling, hiking, cycling, swimming, reading, gardening, learning, writing this blog and generally enjoying good times with friends and family

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