I want to use Folder Redirection to redirect user's My Documents to a network share. First question is: What is best practices for mapping the drive? Should I use the profile tab in AD with the %username% variable, or a net use logon script, or something else? Second question is: How do I deal with laptops and syncing the network with the local storage?

I want to have 2-way syncing so if they manually map their networked home drive and edit it from a different computer, it will sync the newer version to their My Documents folder the next time they connect their normal work computer. I also want to be sure that if they edit a file offline on their laptop while away from the office, that the network version syncs the changes the next time they connect that laptop. Please advise best practices for this scenario in a 2008 R2/Win7 environment. I am also interested in Mac clients for this environment, and while I am very Mac savvy, I would like to hear what others consider to be best practices for Mac network homedirs in a Win environment.

  1. Why would you map a drive to the same folder that their My Documents is being redirected to? That makes no sense to me. Their My Documents folder is redirected to a network share, so when they open, create and save from and to their My Documents folder it's opened, created and saved from and to the network share. Why would you need or want a mapped drive to the same share?

  2. You're making it too complicated. Use Folder Redirection for the My Documents folder in combination with Offline Files. Nothing else need be done. When they log on to computerA they access their My Documents from the redirected folder, create, edit and save a document, then log on to computerB and voila! the document they created from computer A is there... of course.

  3. With Offline Files enabled for the redirected My Documents folder anything they do in My Documents while disconnected from the network will be synced when they reconnect.

  • To simplify on @joeqwerty's #3. Offline Files is enabled by default, so just use GPO to make Documents, Desktop, Favorites, etc. folders and they automatically sync for offline use. – Bret Fisher Sep 3 '12 at 20:38
  • Because I wanted to create a directory on the SAN that was specific to each user and restricted other users with permissions. I figured using the profile tab in AD would create a directory on the SAN specific to each user, then I could redirect their My documents to a sub folder inside of that dir. – user132844 Sep 4 '12 at 1:47
  • I'm assuming that you mean that you want a dedicated redirected My Documents folder for each user and that you don't want any user accessing another users' redirected My Documents folder. If that's the case, then make sure you set the parent folder permissions correctly and Windows will create each users' redirected My Documents folder and apply the correct permissions. The only thing you need to do manually is to create the parent folder and set the correct Share and NTFS permissions on the parent folder. – joeqwerty Sep 4 '12 at 2:10

When in doubt, read the documentation. Best practice is to use a group policy. Don't use a logon script if at all possible. They're a pain to troubleshoot.


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