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Users Are Accessing a DFS Root Replica in a Remote Site

This article was previously published under Q282071
In several circumstances, users are accessing a Distributed File System (DFS) root replica in a remote site and not in their own site.
To resolve this issue, reset your site preferences. If you execute the following command, you should be aware of the negative side effects.After this procedure, clients will not get any referal for a replica outside their own site. This means that if the Replica sets in the client Site are down, the client will not do a failover to a Replica set in another site.

To reset your site preferences, type the following command at a command prompt on the server that hosts the DFS root replica:
dfsutil /insite:\\\dfsroot /set
The syntax to remove the /insite switch is:
dfsutil /insite:\\\dfsroot /reset
The /insite parameter is not listed in the Command help for Dfsutil.exe.

Dfsutil.exe is part of the Windows 2000 Support Tools program. To install this program, double-click Setup.exe in the Support\Tools folder on the Windows 2000 Server CD-ROM.
The behavior described in the "Summary" section can increase costs and slow performance if the sites are linked by a slow wide area network (WAN) link. This behavior may occur even if you have already followed the steps that are described in the following Microsoft Knowledge Base article:
274411 Console and Terminal Services User's Access to Distributed File System Share Ignores Site Preference
If you run either of these commands from a DFS server, these changes are not picked up immediately. This is because the command actually modifies data in Active Directory, not on the DFS server itself. Specifically, it writes the change to the pKT, pKTGuid, remoteServerName attributes of the Active Directory object that represents the DFS root. Typically, this modification is made on the domain controller that holds the operations master role (also known as flexible single-master operations or FSMO) on the primary domain controller. Although the DFS service re-reads the data that is stored in Active Directory on a regular basis, the modification is subject to the normal replication latency. After the data has reached a local domain controller, the DFS service can be forced to re-read the DFS data in Active Directory by restarting the service.

To determine if the /insite switch is active on a DFS server, use the following command:
dfsutil /pktinfo /dfs /level:1
This is sample output from the command:
2 entries...
Entry: \MYDOM\dfsrt
ShortEntry: \MYDOM\dfsrt
Expires in 0 seconds
0:[\DCDFS003\dfsrt$] State:0x09 ( MASTER REFERRAL )
1:[\DCDFS006\dfsrt$] State:0x09 ( MASTER REFERRAL )
Entry: \MYDOM\dfsrt\apps
ShortEntry: \MYDOM\dfsrt\apps
Expires in 0 seconds
0:[\DCDFS003\apps$] State:0x21 ( MASTER DOWNLEVEL )
1:[\DCDFS006\apps$] State:0x21 ( MASTER DOWNLEVEL )
The command completed successfully.

Article ID: 282071 - Last Review: 02/28/2007 01:04:58 - Revision: 2.3

  • Microsoft Windows 2000 Server
  • Microsoft Windows 2000 Advanced Server
  • kbdfs kbpending kbprb KB282071