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Wireless Networks Thread, Distributing WDS images via DFS in Technical; Hi, Hope everyone is enjoying the summer hols always easier to work without the kids :P Now am trying to ...
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    Distributing WDS images via DFS

    Hi,
    Hope everyone is enjoying the summer hols always easier to work without the kids :P

    Now am trying to speed up WDS when pushing an image out to a classroom of computers, I was wondering if anyone has managed to successfully configure WDS to make use of DFS so that images can be held across multiple servers in the hope to boost speed.

    Cheers

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    I think your best bet would be to configure wds to distribute images from one server via multicast. Unfortunately I think multicast is only supported in wds on server 2008, but it might be a good chance for you to explore 2008 af you are not already.

    Matt

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    powdarrmonkey's Avatar
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    If you're distributing using WDS the way you should be, you can't. The images aren't stored as flat files, they are incorporated into the Single Instance Storage Groveler, which mangles them to improve efficiency.

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    Agreed. You won't boost speed but you can make it easir to run across multiple sites.

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    Best thing you can do is look at speeding up your servers network interface (teaming NICS etc) and your network backbone links, as these are probably the 'weak' link in the chain. We regulalry maxed out our 1GB backbones using WDS on more than about 15 machines or so at once.

    Mike.

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    Quote Originally Posted by maniac View Post
    Best thing you can do is look at speeding up your servers network interface (teaming NICS etc) and your network backbone links, as these are probably the 'weak' link in the chain. We regulalry maxed out our 1GB backbones using WDS on more than about 15 machines or so at once.

    Mike.
    If you're already on gigabit switches and they're being saturated then NIC teaming probably won't help.

    this is where multicasting really scores and Server 2008 becomes the best solution - instead of sharing bandwidth between all the machines, they effectively all get to use all of it.

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    powdarrmonkey's Avatar
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    The multicasting caveat I'm wary of is that unlike Ghost, WDS doesn't decompress on the fly - it multicasts the image to the targets, then they each decompress the image off their hard drives afterwards. I may be wrong, I haven't tried it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by powdarrmonkey View Post
    The multicasting caveat I'm wary of is that unlike Ghost, WDS doesn't decompress on the fly - it multicasts the image to the targets, then they each decompress the image off their hard drives afterwards. I may be wrong, I haven't tried it.
    You are correct, if does save the image first and then expand it, which is my only bugbear with it. It isn't significantly slower than ghost, as we seem to get higher multicast transmission speed (although this may be due to testing on newer hardware).

    Matt

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    powdarrmonkey's Avatar
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    I might have a go with it. At the the moment I'm seeing 25 and 8 minutes for Ghost and WDS respectively on a unicast to a single machine, but WDS crawls as soon as I add more than two more machines. But it will have to wait until September, I'm not taking any risks before all the machines are imaged.

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    Hi, thanks for your responses, I found an article on Microsoft's Technet that describes how to get images hosted on DFS but I have to say I don't quite understand how you tell WDS to point clients to the DFS share.. then again maybe it's just for WDS on Win2k8 server, anyone got any views on it?

    Here's the link to MS' technet article: Storing and Replicating Images Using DFS

    If not workable then I'll probably have a look into upgrading our application server to Win2k8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael_84 View Post
    Hi, thanks for your responses, I found an article on Microsoft's Technet that describes how to get images hosted on DFS but I have to say I don't quite understand how you tell WDS to point clients to the DFS share..
    You don't, you just add the image to the WDS server in the normal way but open an image hosted on a DFS share instead of a local drive. The clients don't care.

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