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Active Directory Replication

Updated: March 31, 2005

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

If you are deploying WPS technology in multiple physical locations, calculate your customers' travel times between these locations and adjust Active Directory replication so that user accounts replicate quickly enough for users to log on at different locations. Latency in Active Directory replication might temporarily affect the ability of a customer or user to log on to the network at a different location.

For example, if you deploy Wi-Fi hotspots at a shopping mall in Helsinki, Finland, and at an airport in Florence, Italy, imagine a customer creating an account at one location and then traveling to the other location. Calculate the minimum amount of time it will take your customer to travel from Helsinki to Florence (or from Florence to Helsinki), and then verify that Active Directory replication between these two locations occurs in a shorter amount of time. Thus if it takes a customer eight hours to travel from Helsinki to Florence, configure Active Directory replication between Helsinki and Florence to occur within seven hours of the creation of the account.

If a user account created at one location has not replicated to another location by the time your customer arrives there, authentication will fail and the customer will not be able to log on to your network using their new account credentials.

For more information, see the “Active Directory Replication Topology Technical Reference” on the Web at

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