Configuring offline folders

When you share a folder on a network, you can allow users to access the folder even when they are not connected to the network.

Network files available offline are stored in the computer's cache. The computer can access the cache even if it is not connected to the network.

When you create a shared folder, there are three caching options:

  • Manual caching for documents. Users manually identify which files they want to access offline. Manual caching is often used to access documents or graphics files in a shared network folder. This type of caching is set up by default if your shared folder is configured for offline use.
  • Automatic caching for documents. All folder contents are available offline. Users can access documents, pictures, applications, and other files without a network connection.
  • Automatic caching for programs. All files in a shared folder are available offline, but network traffic is minimized. This type of caching is often used by users who need to start programs from a shared folder. Users can run programs from the shared folder even when disconnected from the network. Cached programs generally run faster than those on the network, since the system does not have to wait for a response from the network every time the program starts.
ImportantImportant
When you use automatic caching for programs, make the files in the shared folder read-only.

Automatic caching for programs enables more than one person at the same time to start programs located on the network drive, increasing the performance of each program. Do not use automatic caching for programs when shared folders contain files that may change.

noteNote
For more information about setting permissions for files and folders, see Related Topics.

Synchronizing offline folders

By synchronizing offline folders, users can work on files even if the network resource is unavailable. Changes made to files can be automatically synchronized on the server when the network connection is restored. Changes made to files while the user is offline are saved locally and then synchronized when the network resource is available.

You can choose a full or quick synchronization. With full synchronization, the most current version of every cached network file is cached to the local drive. A quick synchronization is faster and ensures that each file is complete, but it might not provide the most current version of every network file available offline.

You can choose to synchronize:

  • Automatically when the user logs on
  • Automatically when the user logs off
  • Manually at any time
  • When the computer is idle for a specified amount of time
  • Automatically at specified times
noteNote
For synchronization to work, the network resources must be online or be able to reconnect to the network.

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