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Monday, August 8, 2011

Site Costed Referrals

Windows Server 2003 and above supports the ability to provide finer control over how DFS referrals are returned for the SYSVOL and NETLOGON shares.

By default, in Windows Server 2003 the DFS referral list will contain all local domain controllers of the client’s domain in the local site, randomly ordered, and then all other domain controllers in the domain randomly ordered.
Defining the SiteCostedReferrals Registry value on the domain controllers will alter the DFS referrals so that all local domain controllers are listed first, randomly ordered, then the “next best” site’s domain controllers, and then all others. The “next best” logic is based on site link costs where the lower cost is preferred.
Windows Server 2008 uses the SiteCostedReferrals behavior by default and does not require the Registry value to be set. Windows 2000 Server does not support this feature.
The SiteCostedReferrals Registry value should be defined across all domain controllers in a domain to ensure consistent behavior. The DFS service must be restarted or the domain controllers rebooted for the change to take effect.
This behavior is controlled via the following Registry value:
HKLM\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Dfs\Parameters
Value: SiteCostedReferrals
Type: REG_DWORD
Data:
  • Windows 2003
= Disabled
0 = Disabled
1 = Enabled
  • Windows 2008
= Enabled
0 = Disabled
1 = Enabled

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