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Delay in accessing mapped network drives.

Discussion in 'Networks' started by Baba O'Riley, Jan 3, 2006.

  1. Baba O'Riley

    Baba O'Riley Gigabyte Poster

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    Hi Everybody,

    I could do with a bit of advice. I have a PC downstairs with two user accounts (my GF and I) and I have had the equipment lying around for ages to set up a multimdia PC in the living room and a server which I've finally got round to setting up.

    The first thing I did, was create a domain with the server (Win 2k3) as the domain controller, file server etc. I copied our exsisting profiles from the PC (XP Pro) to a share on the server which is connected via a router and Ethernet. Everytime I tried logging on, I got the message that the roaming profile could not be loaded as the network could not be found. Once I logged on with the local profile, I could not see any problems.

    Anyway, I decided that a domain with roaming profiles wasn't the way to go, so I've set up a share on the server with our My Documents, which I have redirected in the My Docs properties box and also mapped them as drives on each profile. Now this all seems to work fine except if I set the offline files to synchronize at logon. When I do this, the synchronization fails and the PC switches to working offline. They synchronize fine at logoff.

    I narrowed both of these problems down to the fact that it seems to be taking the PC a few minutes after startup to detect the network. For example, if I log on while the PC has been running for a while, all is good, if I logon immediately after booting the PC it doesn't work.

    I have never encountered this on a networked PC before, in my experience (IE at work) I've switched the PC on and off I went. Has anyone any ideas how I can resolve this?

    Cheers.

    PS. Sorry for the essay :)
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+
    WIP: 70-270
  2. simongrahamuk
    Honorary Member

    simongrahamuk Hmmmmmmm?

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    Can you not simply specify for it to only synchronise at log off?

    I mean why have it synchronise twice? what will have changed from you logging off and starting up again?

    You are probably getting the problems at startup because the system is still loading in the background, hence the delay.

    8)
     
  3. Baba O'Riley

    Baba O'Riley Gigabyte Poster

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    First of all, it would resolve the roaming profile problem.

    Secondly, I have my screen saver set to show pictures in the shared pictures folder. Until I access the folder manually, the drive shows as disconnected in the properties dialogue box and when the screen saver starts it can't find any picture files. I'm guessing that synchronizing first would connect the drives and the screen saver will be able to find the picture files without any manual intervention.
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+
    WIP: 70-270
  4. ffreeloader

    ffreeloader Terabyte Poster

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    Have you stuck a sniffer on your DC to see what's actually happening? That's been a lifesaver for me many times. You can see if the pc's are actually reaching the DC at boot and many times you'll see the errors transmitted by the DC to the pc's, if there are errors. At least this way you're not shooting blind at this problem. You'll have some idea as to where to start.
     
    Certifications: MCSE, MCDBA, CCNA, A+
    WIP: LPIC 1
  5. simongrahamuk
    Honorary Member

    simongrahamuk Hmmmmmmm?

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    Why not try changing the path of the screen savers pictures?

    By default the slideshow will use the pictures in your My Pictures folder. You can set the location for the pictures it uses by clicking the Browse button and choosing a new path.

    Try putting them onto a new network share.

    Just a thought. 8)
     
  6. Baba O'Riley

    Baba O'Riley Gigabyte Poster

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    Already have mate.

    It doesn't matter where I save them. I tried making the folder available offline and still got the same result. I assume because the drives are there the PC doesn't switch to offline mode. Basically, I just want a way of making the drives connect automatically (I have checked the "reconnect at logon" box, so they show up in My Computer, but if I go into the properties, it says it's a disconnected network drive. It only connects if I explore the folder.)

    Freddy,

    I've now reconfigured the setup as a workgroup so there is no longer a DC. I have theServer 2k3 machine configured only as a file server. Would a sniffer still work in this case? And can you recommend one?

    Cheers.
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+
    WIP: 70-270
  7. _omni_

    _omni_ Megabyte Poster

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    a sniffer would still work, and server comes with one, installed through
    Add/Remove Programs > Add/Remove Windows Components > Management and Monitoring Tools > Network Monitor Tools.

    or you can just download Ethereal, which is free and the best.

    edit: here's a link for using Window's NetMon. in fact just take a look at that site, you might find some solution there.
     
    Certifications: MCSE 2003, MCSA:M
  8. Baba O'Riley

    Baba O'Riley Gigabyte Poster

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    Thanks Omni, I'll give it a try.
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+
    WIP: 70-270
  9. Baba O'Riley

    Baba O'Riley Gigabyte Poster

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    OK, I've fixed the screensaver issue which, TBH, was bothering me the most. I changed the folder path from "y:\Shared Docs\Shared Pics" to "\\Server\Shared Docs\Shared Pics" and now it works fine. Strange one that.
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+
    WIP: 70-270
  10. Bluerinse
    Honorary Member

    Bluerinse Exabyte Poster

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    It doesn't apply now so much but most slow logons are due to DNS issues. Your clients should be pointing at your local DNS server to resolve local hosts DNS requests for your LAN. Your DNS server should be configured with forwarders to Internet DNS servers, typically your ISPs. So DNS requests for DNS domains outside your local network (the Internet) are forwarded on.

    If you set your clients DNS to point at your gateway (router) or directly to your ISPs DNS server, they will not see the SRV (service) records in your local DNS zone and hence they will fail or be very slow in finding your domain controller or other Windows servers providing file or print server functions.
     
    Certifications: C&G Electronics - MCSA (W2K) MCSE (W2K)
  11. ffreeloader

    ffreeloader Terabyte Poster

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    Baba,

    Windows server OS's come with a program called Network Monitor but it a resource hog, or it was when I last used it anyway. I've used Ethereal for years now. It's about as good a sniffer as you're going to get and it's open source.
     
    Certifications: MCSE, MCDBA, CCNA, A+
    WIP: LPIC 1
  12. Baba O'Riley

    Baba O'Riley Gigabyte Poster

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    Thanks guys. I now have everything doing what I want it to. I've abandoned the idea of roaming profiles for various reasons so I no longer have the network configured as a domain. I'll keep all this in mind if I ever do decide to revert back to having a domain though.

    Cheers.

    Baba.
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+
    WIP: 70-270
  13. eyeball

    eyeball Nibble Poster

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    IMHO there is no need for a domain controller in a network with less than 10 computers. Just creates un-required overhead and hassle.
     
    Certifications: A+, Network +, MCSA
    WIP: CCNA, MCSE+security
  14. Baba O'Riley

    Baba O'Riley Gigabyte Poster

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    Is it not compulsory to have a DC when using AD? I thought it was.
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+
    WIP: 70-270
  15. _omni_

    _omni_ Megabyte Poster

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    yes it is...but i suppose he was saying that a domain is not necessary with <10 computers.
     
    Certifications: MCSE 2003, MCSA:M
  16. Baba O'Riley

    Baba O'Riley Gigabyte Poster

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    No, not always necessary but roaming profiles can be damn handy.

    Thanks everyone.
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+
    WIP: 70-270
  17. Bluerinse
    Honorary Member

    Bluerinse Exabyte Poster

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    Hmmm, well in the real world purely because of the TCO you wouldn't!

    However, considering that this is an IT forum with many members studying for IT certs where knowledge of Active Directory and other technologies relying on having at least one domain controller in place to practise with. I would have to disagree with you.

    If you are studying for MCSA or MCSE it is an absolute must.
     
    Certifications: C&G Electronics - MCSA (W2K) MCSE (W2K)
  18. _omni_

    _omni_ Megabyte Poster

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    yeah, i have only two computers but have a domain, and always log onto the domain.
     
    Certifications: MCSE 2003, MCSA:M
  19. _omni_

    _omni_ Megabyte Poster

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    btw Baba you can use roaming profiles without a domain.
     
    Certifications: MCSE 2003, MCSA:M
  20. Baba O'Riley

    Baba O'Riley Gigabyte Poster

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    Really? Full blown roaming profiles as opposed to just redirecting My Documents etc. to a network share? I didn't know that :oops: . How's it done then?
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+
    WIP: 70-270

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