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I am researching alternative solutions for real-time-file-replication on windows Server OS. Now we use XO Soft WAN Sync for file-replication but in the next time we want to expand our Server-location and so we search for a alternative System for replication. Anyone has experience with real-time replication?

SAN is not possible because the System should be closed. So if the Network is down each node must still working with the replicated files. Any suggestions?

Regards Rene

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4 Answers 4

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Distributed File System (Microsoft)

DFS Replication

Early versions of DFS used FRS which provides basic file replication capability between servers. FRS identifies changed or new files, and copies the latest version of the entire file to all servers.

Windows Server 2003 R2 introduced "DFS Replication" (DFSR) which improves on FRS by only copying those parts of files which have changed (remote differential compression), by using data compression to reduce network traffic, and by allowing administrators flexible configuration options for limiting network traffic with a customizable schedule.

IBM General Parallel File System

The General Parallel File System (GPFS) is a high-performance shared-disk clustered file system developed by IBM. It is used by many of the supercomputers that populate the Top 500 List of the most powerful supercomputers on the planet. For example, GPFS is the filesystem of the ASC Purple Supercomputer which is composed of more than 12,000 processors and has 2 petabytes of total disk storage spanning more than 11,000 disks.

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thx for your answer but is it real-time? Do you know any Benchmark for sync-times of big File-catalogs? –  kockiren Feb 24 '11 at 17:07
    
DFS latency about 60 minutes...GPFS have different replication methods. In LAN Synchronous mirroring is real-time. –  ooshro Feb 24 '11 at 17:14
    
60 minutes? Wow! Do you ever install GPFS for mirroring? –  kockiren Feb 25 '11 at 8:29
    
Is this an error with 60 minutes latency? –  kockiren Feb 25 '11 at 8:38
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DFS is nearly real time, depending on rate of changes to be replicated, available bandwidth and network latency. I have no idea where this 60 minutes latency idea comes from, but its is plain wrong. –  ThatGraemeGuy Dec 9 '11 at 8:43

DFS seems like a good option.

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DFS is not a good option because there can be delays till 60 minutes. –  kockiren Aug 30 '11 at 14:16
    
Especially in your imagination. ANY> replaication over WAN chan habve a delay to 100 days - imagine I change 100 terabyte and it replicates over a modem. DFS does not delay 60 minutes if the system is well set up and capacity is enough to replicate. I see replication in seconds. –  TomTom Dec 9 '11 at 9:44

Terminology so badly wrong here, the replication times does not equal to latency time! Screenshot below shows the schedule to configure replication times on Win2k8r2.

Picture shows where to configure the replication time

Latency on the other hand between sites, really depends on bandwidth, QOS, type of connection and various other items put together.

One massive downside to DFS, there is no file locking mechanism (lets hope they sort this out soon)!

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They never will sort it out because it is file replication, not a distributed file store. Locking would require distributed real time transactions which would make tdfs totally unsuitable for what sensible users use it for. –  TomTom Dec 9 '11 at 9:43

I use MirrorFolder (http://www.techsoftpl.com/backup/) for this task. Its very stable, rediculously cheap and has a large number of options and modes. I've used it successfully on every version of Windows from 2000 to Win7 and on Windows Server 2003 and 2008.

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