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Creating a DFS root

Updated: January 21, 2005

Applies To: Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2003 R2, Windows Server 2003 with SP1, Windows Server 2003 with SP2

Creating a DFS root

You can create a DFS root on an NTFS partition residing on a computer in the Windows Server 2003 family. When creating a DFS root, you have the option of establishing either a stand-alone DFS root or a domain DFS root.

A stand-alone DFS root:

  • Does not use Active Directory.

  • Cannot have more than one root-level target.

  • Does not support automatic file replication using the File Replication service.

  • Supports fault tolerance through Server Clusters.

A domain DFS root:

  • Must be hosted on a domain member server.

  • Has its DFS namespace automatically published to Active Directory.

  • Can have more than one root-level target.

  • Supports automatic file replication through FRS.

  • Supports fault tolerance through FRS.

Using the DFS administration tool, you specify a target to assign as the DFS root. In addition to accessing this target, users can access any subfolders of this target.

You can host multiple DFS roots on a single computer when using Windows Server 2003, Enterprise Edition or Windows Server 2003, Datacenter Edition.

On server clusters, the name you give a non-clustered DFS root on a node's local storage must be different from the name you give a clustered DFS root on the cluster storage.

Large domain-based DFS namespaces might cause significantly increased network traffic due to the size of the DFS Active Directory object. As a result, it is recommended that you use fewer than 5,000 DFS links for a domain root. The largest recommended namespace size for a stand-alone root is 50,000 links on servers running Windows Server 2003.

If your DFS namespace includes roots and root targets which exist on both computers running one of the Windows Server 2003 family of products and computers running Windows 2000, you must administer those roots from a computer running a product in the Windows Server 2003 family, or from a computer running the Windows Server 2003 Administration Tools Pack. You can not administer the DFS namespace from a computer running Windows 2000.

For more information, see Create a DFS root.

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