Branch Office: 5 Ways Server 2008 Improves WAN Utilization.

Bandwidth utilization, latency, and the reliability of the Wide Area Network are three major concerns when administering a branch office environment. Windows Server 2008 helps to address these concerns through the following 5 technologies.


  • RODC
    • Since the RODC does not accept changes, writable domain controllers that are replication partners do not have to pull changes from the RODC. This reduces the workload of bridgehead servers in the main site and the effort required to monitor replication.
    • RODC unidirectional replication applies to both AD DS and distributed file system (DFS) replication. The RODC performs normal inbound replication for AD DS and DFS replication changes.

  • Group Policy

    • New XML-based format for policy-definition files called ADMX in Windows Server 2008 addresses policy file replication issues.
    • The ADMX format supports a central store for information relating to all policies. Specific Group Policy Object (GPO) settings associated with previous policy-definition file formats are no longer replicated as a result.
  • SMB 2.0
    • SMB 2.0 protocol enhances communication by:
      • :Multiple SMB commands within the same packet. This reduces the number of packets sent between an SMB client and server, which was a common complaint against SMB 1.0
      • Larger buffer sizes compared to SMB 1.0.
      • Larger number of concurrent open file handles on the server.
      • Larger number of file shares for a server.
      • Durable handles that can withstand short interruptions in network availability.
  • Next Generation TCP/IP stack
    • The Next Generation TCP/IP stack optimized for use in the variety of networking environments that exist today. Branch office environments benefit from enhancements to performance, connectivity, and reliability. The new TCP/IP stack includes or enhances:
      • Receive Window Auto-Tuning
      • Compound TCP
      • Enhancements for high-loss environments
      • Neighbor Unreachability Detection for IPv4
      • Changes in dead gateway detection
      • Changes to path maximum transmission unit (PMTU) black hole router detection
      • Routing compartments
      • Network Diagnostics Framework support
      • Windows Filtering Platform (WFP)
      • Explicit Congestion Notification (ECN)
  • DFS
    • Adopts all of the changes made in Windows Server 2003 R2 including:
      • New state-based, multimaster replication, which is optimized for WAN environments and which supports replication scheduling, bandwidth throttling, and a new byte-level compression algorithm known as remote differential compression (RDC).
      • DFS namespaces, which help administrators group shared folders that are located on different servers. The shares can then be presented to users as a virtual tree of folders.
      • Read-only DFS, which enables members to access data without the ability to change it.

Jeff Loucks
Available Technology
Available Technology
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