Are you looking into using DFS (Distributed File System) for your organization?

You might be wondering about the pros and cons – or perhaps you’ve simply heard of it and you want to know what exactly it is. Let’s take a look at what DFS is and explore the advantages of using it in your organization.

What is a Distributed File System?

A Distributed File System is also often known as a “network file system” (even though other file systems also use networks to transmit data).

A Distributed File System is designed to be as user-friendly as possible for client programs, so that the distributed file system operates in a way that seems similar to a local file system. In terms of your organization, that means that users can interact with the Distributed File System easily and intuitively.

The best-known Distributed File System is Microsoft’s DFS.

DFS consists of a server component (included in all versions of Windows Server) plus a client component (included in all versions of Windows since Windows 2000).

As Microsoft explains:

“The Distributed File System (DFS) functions provide the ability to logically group shares on multiple servers and to transparently link shares into a single hierarchical namespace. DFS organizes shared resources on a network in a treelike structure.”

This means that, if your organization has virtual files in lots of different locations, you can group them logically regardless of where they’re physically located on the network.

You can even add cloud services to your DFS infrastructure, by using Microsoft DFS cloud file sharing.

7 Advantages of Using DFS in Your Organization

#1: Easy Navigation Between Different Shared Folders

DFS uses a hierarchical and directory-based system that makes it easy to navigate between different shared folders. If you’ve ever had to hunt through multiple different locations to find the file you need, then you’ll know how useful this can be.

#2: User-Friendly System That Won’t Require Lots of Training for Employees

With DFS, you won’t need to spend lots of time and resources training employees on how to use it. From the end user’s point of view, using DFS is just like accessing local files on a computer.

#3: Reduces Your Bandwidth Usage

“[DNS] monitors for changes in files and updates only the changed blocks in files, so bandwidth usage is highly efficient.” This means it will work fast and you won’t need a lot of bandwidth.

#4: Built-In Data Replication (Redundancy)

Distributed File Systems replicate data blocks onto multiple clusters, meaning that it’s easy to recover a data block if a cluster or rack fails. Plus, the same file can be accessed by more than one person at the same time.

#5: Easy for Administrators

DFS is straightforward to administer, meaning less work for your IT team. DFS is also self-healing, meaning it will automatically attempt to recover files when there’s an error.

#6: Physical Location of Files Doesn’t Matter

Perhaps, for legacy reasons, some files are stored on a small server in your office building and others are stored remotely on remote servers. With DFS, it doesn’t matter where your files are physically located.

#7: DFS Keeps Files That Fail Conflict Resolution

If there’s a conflict, the last person to edit the file has their changes kept. However, DFS also moves any files or folders that fail conflict resolution to the “Conflict and Deleted” folder. This also stores files that are deleted from replicated folders.

DFS could be the solution that your business is looking for, especially if you have files spread across multiple physical locations. It’s relatively straightforward for your IT team to set up, and extremely easy for your other employees to use.