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Difference between Folder Redirection and Offline Folders

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  #1  
Old 22-04-2008
JohnB
 
Posts: n/a
Difference between Folder Redirection and Offline Folders

What's the difference between Folder Redirection and Offline Folders? In
experimenting with this for the first time, it "seems" like they are at
least very similar, because after logging in the My Documents folder on the
Desktop had the Offline Folders symbol on it.

If I turn off Offline Folders with a GPO will Folder Redirection still work?
Thanks



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  #2  
Old 22-04-2008
Lanwench [MVP - Exchange]
 
Posts: n/a
Re: Difference between Folder Redirection and Offline Folders

JohnB <jbrigan@yahoo.com> wrote:
> What's the difference between Folder Redirection and Offline Folders?


Folder redirection does just that - folders such as My Documents,
Application Data, Desktop, etc., are redirected to a server folder.

Offline files is sometimes used in conjunction with this (or without), but
isn't the same thing - it creates a local sync'd copy of that data on the
hard drive. I find it problematic & error prone, and I don't want it on a
LAN connected computer, certainly.

> In experimenting with this for the first time, it "seems" like they
> are at least very similar, because after logging in the My Documents
> folder on the Desktop had the Offline Folders symbol on it.


Yes, because it's enabled by default.
>
> If I turn off Offline Folders with a GPO will Folder Redirection
> still work? Thanks


Absolutely. I never use offline folders, and I always use folder
redirection. I usually disable offline caching on my shares, even.


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  #3  
Old 22-04-2008
Ace Fekay [MVP]
 
Posts: n/a
Re: Difference between Folder Redirection and Offline Folders

In news:uMl5ts$oIHA.1580@TK2MSFTNGP06.phx.gbl,
Lanwench [MVP - Exchange]
<lanwench@heybuddy.donotsendme.unsolicitedmailatyahoo.com> typed:
> JohnB <jbrigan@yahoo.com> wrote:
> > What's the difference between Folder Redirection and Offline
> > Folders?

>
> Folder redirection does just that - folders such as My Documents,
> Application Data, Desktop, etc., are redirected to a server folder.
>
> Offline files is sometimes used in conjunction with this (or
> without), but isn't the same thing - it creates a local sync'd copy
> of that data on the hard drive. I find it problematic & error prone,
> and I don't want it on a LAN connected computer, certainly.
>
> > In experimenting with this for the first time, it "seems" like they
> > are at least very similar, because after logging in the My Documents
> > folder on the Desktop had the Offline Folders symbol on it.

>
> Yes, because it's enabled by default.
> >
> > If I turn off Offline Folders with a GPO will Folder Redirection
> > still work? Thanks

>
> Absolutely. I never use offline folders, and I always use folder
> redirection. I usually disable offline caching on my shares, even.


Ahh, but I find Offline Files works nicely with travelling folks (sales,
execs, etc) using laptops. This way they have their data on the plane, etc,
without connectivity. The old Briefcase thingy...

But I never use it on a desktop. It wouldn't make sense because they are
theoretically always connected.

I've been using them successfully for quite a number of years. Curious, what
kind of problems have you experienced with Offline Files?

Ace




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  #4  
Old 22-04-2008
ProtonJohn
 
Posts: n/a
RE: Difference between Folder Redirection and Offline Folders

Folder redirection is used to redirect the My Documents and/or Desktop to an
alternate location - such as a network server with redundancy to prevent loss
of files. Opposed to keeping the My Documents and Desktop directories on the
local drive and losing the contents in the event there is a software or
hardware system failure.



Offline files are normally used with a laptop or mobile computer. The files
are synronized with a network location likely used in conjunction with folder
redirection. A copy of the files are cached on the mobile device and changes
are synced to the network location when the mobile device connects to the
network.



"JohnB" wrote:

> What's the difference between Folder Redirection and Offline Folders? In
> experimenting with this for the first time, it "seems" like they are at
> least very similar, because after logging in the My Documents folder on the
> Desktop had the Offline Folders symbol on it.
>
> If I turn off Offline Folders with a GPO will Folder Redirection still work?
> Thanks
>
>
>

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  #5  
Old 22-04-2008
Lanwench [MVP - Exchange]
 
Posts: n/a
Re: Difference between Folder Redirection and Offline Folders

Ace Fekay [MVP] <PleaseAskMe@SomeDomain.com> wrote:
> In news:uMl5ts$oIHA.1580@TK2MSFTNGP06.phx.gbl,
> Lanwench [MVP - Exchange]
> <lanwench@heybuddy.donotsendme.unsolicitedmailatyahoo.com> typed:
>> JohnB <jbrigan@yahoo.com> wrote:
>>> What's the difference between Folder Redirection and Offline
>>> Folders?

>>
>> Folder redirection does just that - folders such as My Documents,
>> Application Data, Desktop, etc., are redirected to a server folder.
>>
>> Offline files is sometimes used in conjunction with this (or
>> without), but isn't the same thing - it creates a local sync'd copy
>> of that data on the hard drive. I find it problematic & error prone,
>> and I don't want it on a LAN connected computer, certainly.
>>
>>> In experimenting with this for the first time, it "seems" like they
>>> are at least very similar, because after logging in the My Documents
>>> folder on the Desktop had the Offline Folders symbol on it.

>>
>> Yes, because it's enabled by default.
>>>
>>> If I turn off Offline Folders with a GPO will Folder Redirection
>>> still work? Thanks

>>
>> Absolutely. I never use offline folders, and I always use folder
>> redirection. I usually disable offline caching on my shares, even.

>
> Ahh, but I find Offline Files works nicely with travelling folks
> (sales, execs, etc) using laptops. This way they have their data on
> the plane, etc, without connectivity. The old Briefcase thingy...
>
> But I never use it on a desktop. It wouldn't make sense because they
> are theoretically always connected.
>
> I've been using them successfully for quite a number of years.
> Curious, what kind of problems have you experienced with Offline
> Files?


Lost data, local copies that can't sync if I need to move the server
location, etc.

I've started to use separate GPOs for laptops (with loopback processing) so
that they redirect My Documents only (to c:\data\something) and then use
SecondCopy (www.centered.com) to sync the data to
\\server\sharedfolder\%username%\my documents at login & every X hours. This
works well. And if something bad happens, or if I decide to move all the
users' data to \\server2, I don't have to worry about the offline cache
being orphaned.
>
> Ace




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  #6  
Old 23-04-2008
Ace Fekay [MVP]
 
Posts: n/a
Re: Difference between Folder Redirection and Offline Folders

In news:eSYPIzGpIHA.4292@TK2MSFTNGP04.phx.gbl,
Lanwench [MVP - Exchange]
<lanwench@heybuddy.donotsendme.unsolicitedmailatyahoo.com> typed:

> Lost data, local copies that can't sync if I need to move the server
> location, etc.
>
> I've started to use separate GPOs for laptops (with loopback
> processing) so that they redirect My Documents only (to
> c:\data\something) and then use SecondCopy (www.centered.com) to sync
> the data to \\server\sharedfolder\%username%\my documents at login &
> every X hours. This works well. And if something bad happens, or if I
> decide to move all the users' data to \\server2, I don't have to
> worry about the offline cache being orphaned.


I can understand what you went through. I know it is a PITA and requires
extra steps to take care of things such as changing a server location such
as disabling Offline Files on the client, restart, delete the Windows\CSC
folder, restart and renable them and choose from scratch what to synch up
again. But for the most part, I've had pretty good results with it.

I like that Second Copy tool too. I've used it for database and other data
from various servers to copy to a single point so I can back them up with
the regular backup app or simply making sure a copy of something is
elsewhere. But the differences are with Offline Files is Offline Files
service preserves permissions on the objects.

Cheers!






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  #7  
Old 23-04-2008
Lanwench [MVP - Exchange]
 
Posts: n/a
Re: Difference between Folder Redirection and Offline Folders

Ace Fekay [MVP] <PleaseAskMe@SomeDomain.com> wrote:
> In news:eSYPIzGpIHA.4292@TK2MSFTNGP04.phx.gbl,
> Lanwench [MVP - Exchange]
> <lanwench@heybuddy.donotsendme.unsolicitedmailatyahoo.com> typed:
>
>> Lost data, local copies that can't sync if I need to move the server
>> location, etc.
>>
>> I've started to use separate GPOs for laptops (with loopback
>> processing) so that they redirect My Documents only (to
>> c:\data\something) and then use SecondCopy (www.centered.com) to sync
>> the data to \\server\sharedfolder\%username%\my documents at login &
>> every X hours. This works well. And if something bad happens, or if I
>> decide to move all the users' data to \\server2, I don't have to
>> worry about the offline cache being orphaned.

>
> I can understand what you went through. I know it is a PITA and
> requires extra steps to take care of things such as changing a server
> location such as disabling Offline Files on the client, restart,
> delete the Windows\CSC folder, restart and renable them and choose
> from scratch what to synch up again. But for the most part, I've had
> pretty good results with it.


I know many people like it. I will never touch it again. I've had clients
sync GBs worth of data and lose changes I couldn't recover.
>
> I like that Second Copy tool too. I've used it for database and other
> data from various servers to copy to a single point so I can back
> them up with the regular backup app or simply making sure a copy of
> something is elsewhere. But the differences are with Offline Files is
> Offline Files service preserves permissions on the objects.


Well, as to that, so does robocopy in a batch file ;-)
On which objects is the security an issue?


>
> Cheers!




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  #8  
Old 24-04-2008
Ace Fekay [MVP]
 
Posts: n/a
Re: Difference between Folder Redirection and Offline Folders

In news:eFQ9UjTpIHA.3900@TK2MSFTNGP05.phx.gbl,
Lanwench [MVP - Exchange]
<lanwench@heybuddy.donotsendme.unsolicitedmailatyahoo.com> typed:

>
> Well, as to that, so does robocopy in a batch file ;-)
> On which objects is the security an issue?


No, not an issue. Offline Files preserves NTFS file security descriptors.
:-)



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  #9  
Old 24-04-2008
Lanwench [MVP - Exchange]
 
Posts: n/a
Re: Difference between Folder Redirection and Offline Folders

Ace Fekay [MVP] <PleaseAskMe@SomeDomain.com> wrote:
> In news:eFQ9UjTpIHA.3900@TK2MSFTNGP05.phx.gbl,
> Lanwench [MVP - Exchange]
> <lanwench@heybuddy.donotsendme.unsolicitedmailatyahoo.com> typed:
>
>>
>> Well, as to that, so does robocopy in a batch file ;-)
>> On which objects is the security an issue?

>
> No, not an issue. Offline Files preserves NTFS file security
> descriptors. :-)


Ah. Well, that's never mattered to me. The only stuff I'd ever sync is the
user's home/personal directory on the server to which they have modify
rights. No shared folders, ever. And the local copy has the rights I give
it - meaning, they have modify.


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  #10  
Old 25-04-2008
Ace Fekay [MVP]
 
Posts: n/a
Re: Difference between Folder Redirection and Offline Folders

In news:ueYJZEgpIHA.4716@TK2MSFTNGP06.phx.gbl,
Lanwench [MVP - Exchange]
<lanwench@heybuddy.donotsendme.unsolicitedmailatyahoo.com> typed:
>
> Ah. Well, that's never mattered to me. The only stuff I'd ever sync
> is the user's home/personal directory on the server to which they
> have modify rights. No shared folders, ever. And the local copy has
> the rights I give it - meaning, they have modify.


Good way to do it. In some of the environments I'm in redirecting 100's or
in the position I'm in now, about 3000 users under redirect and about 1200
of them laptop users set for Offline Files, we have to preserve permissions.

I've used the way you've mentioned with smaller customers. It works nicely.
But in the larger firms, gots to watch security. :-)

Cheers!




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  #11  
Old 25-04-2008
Lanwench [MVP - Exchange]
 
Posts: n/a
Re: Difference between Folder Redirection and Offline Folders

Ace Fekay [MVP] <PleaseAskMe@SomeDomain.com> wrote:
> In news:ueYJZEgpIHA.4716@TK2MSFTNGP06.phx.gbl,
> Lanwench [MVP - Exchange]
> <lanwench@heybuddy.donotsendme.unsolicitedmailatyahoo.com> typed:
>>
>> Ah. Well, that's never mattered to me. The only stuff I'd ever sync
>> is the user's home/personal directory on the server to which they
>> have modify rights. No shared folders, ever. And the local copy has
>> the rights I give it - meaning, they have modify.

>
> Good way to do it. In some of the environments I'm in redirecting
> 100's or in the position I'm in now, about 3000 users under redirect
> and about 1200 of them laptop users set for Offline Files, we have to
> preserve permissions.
> I've used the way you've mentioned with smaller customers. It works
> nicely. But in the larger firms, gots to watch security. :-)
>
> Cheers!


<sniffle> I never get to play with the big kids. Not as a small-fry
consultant, anyway. Oh well!



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  #12  
Old 25-04-2008
Ace Fekay [MVP]
 
Posts: n/a
Re: Difference between Folder Redirection and Offline Folders

In news:OEMWeYmpIHA.1240@TK2MSFTNGP02.phx.gbl,
Lanwench [MVP - Exchange]
<lanwench@heybuddy.donotsendme.unsolicitedmailatyahoo.com> typed:
>
> <sniffle> I never get to play with the big kids. Not as a small-fry
> consultant, anyway. Oh well!


LOL!

Replied privately...




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